BY SCO Admin | April 17 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print


Bittersweet celebration for St Patrick’s pupils

Children from St Patrick’s Primary School in Glasgow had a bittersweet celebration over Easter as they hit a £2000 target for a mission in Africa and said goodbye to a nun who has worked at the school for 15 years.

Six weeks of events from the schoolchildren raised the four-figure sum for the Sisters of Mercy, who run a mission in the South African township of Addo helping people living in poverty, the unemployed and those suffering from HIV/Aids.

The school decided to help the mission after pupil support staff member Sr Annette McCartan revealed she would be leaving the school after a decade and a half, and asked that instead of personal gifts the pupils help something close to her heart and raise money for her order’s mission.

The Sisters of Mercy have in the past helped St Patrick’s by buying whiteboards and helping with school trips, and the pupils will now return the favour by helping the sisters’ work.

Addo is a township in South Africa near Port Elizabeth. The Sisters of Mercy arrived in March 2006 at the invitation of Bishop Michael Coleman of Port Elizabeth Diocese, beginning their work in an area around Addo known as the Sundays River Valley.

Their ministry involves enabling people to help themselves, particularly in education, running programmes on Catechetics and the Sacraments. As many people in the area are seasonal workers who are employed in fruit growing from April to September, the sisters help the unemployed in the African summer, and run summer schools for children.

The St Patrick’s pupils have previously helped the Sisters of Mercy by buying plates and utensils to help fellow children in the African township. As they presented the £2000 raised this Easter, they received an update on their work from a visiting nun back from Addo, Sr Patricia McMahon, who works in a local prison where many of the inmates have been incarcerated as a result of literacy problems and poor education.


—This story ran in full in the April 17 edition print of the SCO, available in parishes.

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