WelCom November 2020
Work by the Society of St Vincent de Paul during the Covid-19 lockdown to support the needs of the community has helped many people to feel connected in a suddenly disconnected world, Cardinal John Dew said at a Mass for the feast of St Vincent de Paul on September 27, 2020.
The Mass was hosted by the Wellington Area Councils of the Society of St Vincent de Paul, at St Benedict’s Church, St Francis of Assisi parish of Ōhāriu. It was able to occur because Covid-19 level 2 restrictions had been lifted the previous week.
Quoting from the first reading of the day from St Paul’s letter to the Philippians urging that ‘people not think of their own interests first but everybody thinks of other people’s interests instead’, Cardinal John acknowledged in the face of the Covid-19 threat, the Society’s members, volunteers and staff could have chosen to look after their own interests.
Instead the St Vincent de Paul Society ensured many people continued to receive food parcels, personal hygiene supplies, winter blankets and bedding for new-born babies.
St Vincent de Paul Wellington are now supporting 33 per cent more people than this time last year, and are providing 55 per cent more services. These needs are expected to increase as the wage subsidy and rent freeze schemes come to an end.
Cardinal John asked the Society to continue to accompany and support parishes in identifying and responding to both new and old forms of poverty and injustice.
He told St Vincent de Paul volunteers, members and staff, ‘Please continue to be a living example of the mission inspired by St Vincent de Paul.’