Christmas Meal 2018
During a funeral mass in St Mary's in November 2017 I had a thought "Do a Christmas meal". This prompted a new venture and a year-long journey for RYM.
Loneliness is a huge problem in the L25 area, George Kuruvilla, a Woolton GP started Woolton Community Life as a result of loneliness suffered by elderly in the area. This became the focus of the meal, to provide a Christmas Day meal where the emphasis was on Fellowship rather than food.
After a year of overcoming hurdles, we finally reached 22nd December, where our dreams finally turned into reality! A whole raft of volunteers turned up to transform St Mary's church hall, some in response to the church newsletters & articles in the Liverpool Echo and on Radio Merseyside.
St Julie's' helpers
There were 5 pupils and a member of staff from St Julie's, volunteers from St Mary's & Bishop Eton, but volunteers came from as far as Ormskirk! With their help the hall was transformed into a beautiful dining experience in 50 minutes!
The beautiful tree and tables
Christmas day arrived, so did 30 volunteers to apply the finishing touches and offer service to our guests. At 1pm all the preparation was complete, finishing touches applied and finally, our 40 guests arrived.
Some of our volunteers
In this wonderful Christmas experience, the guests were given personalised gift boxes containing an array of home-made festive treats. This was followed by a 4 course Christmas meal.
Some of the local clergy joined us.
A group of violinists provided musical accompaniment during the meal. Following the meal, guests were then each given a Christmas gift before happily departing for home.
The lovely violinists who played traditional carols and some modern Christmas classics
As I review this year-long experience, I have been bowled over by the kindness, generosity and selflessness of people from all walks of life. The result far exceeded my expectations, the overwhelming memory for me was one of multiple blessings, happiness, love & service to others.
In conclusion a quote from a thank you card I received
"It was lovely to see so many happy faces on people who otherwise might have been alone. Believe me the Spirit of Christmas was truly there!"
Anita meeting and greeting
Anita Carson Redemptorist Youth Ministry – Co-coordinator
Watch our slideshow below for more of a flavour of the day