December 20, 2011

Good Cup of Tea: A Big Thank You to all our supporters (MIA)

We want to take this opportunity to thank each person who has supported the ‘Good Cup of Tea’ event. It has been wonderfully successful, not just from a financial point of view but very importantly as a Mercy event that created an opportunity for sharing and celebration.

The stories we heard were marvellous - sisters and lay friends, male and female, young and old met together around the world to enjoy a ‘cup of tea’ together.

Tea events were held in communities, hospitals, schools, elderly and juvenile care homes, offices and even in private homes. In some places groups linked up together, in others a tea party was sponsored by a donor, some came in fancy dress, others enhanced the event by social activities or additional fundraising activities.

Many used the opportunity to include a Mercy prayer or a presentation on some aspect of Catherine’s life. Indeed it has been reported that Catherine herself turned up at some events – distance of places one from another posed no barrier and her ability to appear as a young woman in some places and more elderly in others has left us marvelling at her ingenuity! The ‘cup of tea’ also proved its capacity for cultural accommodation with many places choosing their own way of showing hospitality.

What most pleased us was the way in which this simple gesture of sharing a ‘cup of tea’ together called forth in all of us something that is very deep in our Mercy tradition – hospitality, community, celebration, fun, sharing, support, story-telling, solidarity and the ability to do extraordinary things in very ordinary ways. We are in no doubt that Catherine would have approved of the many and varied events and would probably have marvelled that her desire for the Sisters to ‘ have a good cup of tea’ when she was gone has such an appeal and relevance today.

While not all of the pledged money is in, our present count shows that your support of us has reached a whopping €68,000. What a magnificent show of generosity! We are both humbled and grateful.

We have also been encouraged by a suggestion from many of you that we make this an annual event. If you have any ideas or suggestions to share with us on how we can build on this year’s experience, please get in touch with us.

In the words of Catherine, written to Frances Warde on December 23, 1837 we thank you again ‘May God preserve and bless you and grant you all the graces and precious gifts reserved for this holy season’.

Messages to Mary Reynolds rsm - Executive Director MIA

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