This year, the Bishop’s Lent Appeal hopes to aid the plight of unaccompanied child migrants in the Calais area. These youngsters have been reduced to sleeping rough in the open since the closure of the refugee camps last year. They are extremely vulnerable.
We hope two projects will benefit: Firstly, a safe house and outreach ministry to child migrants run by an Old Catholic monk – Br Johannes Maertens – who is a member of the congregation in Calais. The project is called Maria Skobtsova House, named after an Orthodox Saint and Martyr who took care of Russian refugees, migrants, the homeless and Jewish people in Paris during the last century.
Secondly: In partnership with Canterbury Diocese and the USPG, we are recruiting a priest who will serve as Chaplain to the Pas-de-Calais congregations and as a refugee project officer to give pastoral support and assistance, liaising with the various NGOs and agencies present on the ground. So, the second purpose of the Appeal is to raise funds to help the new priest by having financial resources to hand to support small projects.
Please do support our Lenten Lunches to raise monies for these worthy causes.