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Mercy House - News and Thanks August 07

From Diana:

We wish to say a thousand " thank you's" to everyone who helped and and supported the luncheon organised by Penny and Mick Finn and Judy McGregor.

We are immensely delighted that we may be able to pay Jean Paul's full fees with the proceeds. Jean Paul would like to say a big thank you to you all. Here in the picture he is trying his hand in preparation for the Mercy House Table Tennis Championships, using our newly donated pingpong table. It has been a dream for a long time to get a table tennis table at Mercy House. Recently we advertised in 6 parishes and actually got 4 responses! We were able to get a kit and it has given immense joy to our residents, particularly as some of them are on school holidays, which can get a bit lonely and boring

On Sunday 26th August we had our first Mercy House Table Tennis Championships, which we intend to hold 3 or 4 times a year. There were quite handsome money prizes and in the picture the winners have just received these awards: Riccardo (Rwanda) on the right came first. Dibaba (DRC) on the left, came second and Richard (Rwanda), beside Diana, came third.

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On Sunday 12 August, we celebrated the 80th birthday of our very sprightly and energetic Sr Fidelis. Having lunch together with us are from left: Sister Fidelis, Brother Eric (Combonis Missionary) , Father John (Comboni Missionary) and Monica, a new volunteer, who will be the UK from October for around 6 months and who is keen to go to Chichester to met the St Richard's community and communicate about Mercy House. She will contact Judy and Penny and hopes to be able to go down for the Xmas stall, depending on her work commitments.

On Sunday 26 August we also had a wonderful surprise: Simon, out from Rome on a very short holiday, came back to visit Mercy House. He did voluntary work for Mercy House when he was a lecturer at Witwatersrand University in Johannesburg from 1998 to 2003. Many of the people he knew then are still around, but no longer at Mercy House. One, however, whom he remembers well and who also remembers him well, is our young Burundian orphan, Shadadi, who was 6 when he came to us in 2000 and who is now 13. Simon could not get over how he has sprung up like a beanstalk - from being a very tiny little boy to a real tall one! In the picture you see the two of them together.

Simon came out from Rome, not only to see his family, but also to receive his minor orders from the local Bishop who will also ordain him next year in Johannesburg. Some of us attened the very beautiful and simple ceremony last Friday 24th August, when Simon received his minor orders. Simon was also delighted to hear of the wonderful support St Richard's has continued to give to Mercy House. If anyone from St Richard's visits Rome, I am sure Simon would be happy to see you: he lives at the French College near the Vatican.

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