The Sisters of Mercy of the Holy Cross in the Indian state of West Bengal are immensely grateful to our benefactors for having enabled them to purchase essential personal protective equipment against the coronavirus. The sisters are working on the front line against the disease and the 22,862 Euros given by our generous benefactors will help them in this work, especially against the devastating second wave of the virus, which has struck India particularly hard.
„We are helpless in the face of the situation. There is a shortage of vaccinations, oxygen, hospital beds and medication generally. It is not even possible to conduct funerals properly. Every day we hear news of the death of friends and relatives. The sick are being cared for in their homes, in the convents and in the presbyteries“, the sisters report. And of course, in caring for the sick, they themselves are exposed to a very high risk of infection.
At the same time their usual income has collapsed, since the sole source of income they had previously was the schools they ran, schools which are now closed on account of the pandemic. Instead, they have set up quarantine stations for the poor and needy, who simply cannot self‐isolate in the cramped conditions of their own homes, and at the same time they are providing accommodation for stranded migrant workers who have not only lost their jobs but are unable to get back to their home villages in other parts of India.
But it is not only medical and material help that the sisters are providing for the poor, especially in the remote outlying villages, but equally importantly human and spiritual accompaniment and support. The sisters have observed how people are becoming increasingly depressed and fearful, having lost their employment and with it their little remaining sense of security, and also how many of the children are becoming addicted to the Internet. They are praying with the people and for them and accompanying them through this difficult time.
Thanks to the essential PPE that you have provided, the sisters can now continue in the selfless work to which they have dedicated themselves, and in a way that makes them and others feel just a little safer. May God bless and reward you all!