Mercy Works Updates
March 25th 2020
An Update to our supporters regarding Mercy Works and the COVID-19 Pandemic
Due to COVID-19 crisis both locally and globally we are all facing an uncertain and a rapidly developing situation.
Mercy Works is closely monitoring advice provided by government and relevant authorities and following their directives to ensure the safety and wellbeing of all our project participants and our staff.
In terms of both our staff and Board, most of us at Mercy Works are therefore working from home, so are able to be contacted by email and by phone (where calls can be diverted to the individual staff member if required). We are also valuing regular online meetings where we can stay in contact and give support to each other.
As always Mercy Works remains committed to our mission amongst marginalised communities in Australia and in the Asia Pacific region.
The current status of our various projects is as follows:-
- In Papua New Guinea we hope to start new projects in the province of Simbu later this year. We plan to continue our projects in Kiunga into the future. Projects in Goroka, and Mt Hagen continue till mid 2021 as we transition into Simbu.
- In Timor-Leste we support one health project in the Suai Covalima district and if funds permit we are hopeful of partnering with new projects in the Baucau district later this year.
- Mercy Works Mercy Connect Refugee Student Mentoring is running in schools which remain open and where the school and the volunteer have deemed it is safe to continue. We are also exploring possible creative ways to continue this
- The Mercy House of Welcome in Kilburn in Adelaide continues to offer support to asylum seekers via telephone while the Centre has been closed to comply with social distancing guidelines.
- We are still exploring possible new Indigenous projects in Australia to start later this year, and we will keep you posted.
In the words of Catherine McAuley, foundress of the Sisters ~
‘The Poor Need Help Today, Not Next Week’
I recently received this beautiful reflection by Lyn Ungar and I offer it to you to ponder ~
What if you thought of it
as the Jews consider the Sabbath –
the most sacred of times?
Cease from travel.
Cease from buying and selling.
Give up, just for now,
on trying to make the world
different than it is. Sing. Pray. Touch only those
to whom you commit your life.
And when your body has become still,
reach out with your heart.
Know that we are connected
in ways that are terrifying and beautiful.
(You could hardly deny it now.)
Know that our lives
are in one another’s hands.
(Surely, that has come clear.)
Do not reach out your hands.
Reach out your heart.
Reach out your words.
Reach out all the tendrils
of compassion that move, invisibly,
where we cannot touch.
Promise this world your love –
for better or for worse,
in sickness and in health,
so long as we all shall live.
‘Compassion’ – Mary Southard CSJ
Yours in mercy,
Sally Bradley RSM