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St George’s News - Waterlooville’s Parish Magazine

The Website for St George’s Church, Waterlooville and its Parish Magazine St George’s News

Christmas 2017 issue

Mothers’ Union Notes

The MU speaker at the October meeting was Audrey (Mentor) who spoke about her work with Save the Children.

Audrey trained as a nurse in London. One evening she and a friend went to a Save the Children meeting (mainly, she said, for the free cup of tea and currant bun!) But this evening was to change her life and determine her future path.

As she left the meeting she knew that this was her calling and that she would devote her life and talents to this cause.

She applied to join Save the Children and was accepted. They needed people with languages and Audrey spoke French, a little German and fluent Cantonese and Madarin.

She hoped to be sent to Africa but her first posting was to Hong Kong, working in Kowloon amongst opium addicts, whose babies were being born already addicted to the drug. After 18 months she was transferred to India, about 3 miles outside Bombay/Mumbai where she found children living and working on a big rubbish dump. Here she helped with an outbreak of cholera. Next she was moved to Brazil, working with very poor families whose children left home to earn a living, sleeping by day and rummaging in dustbins for food during the night.

Audrey helped start a small children’s home and encouraged local people to care for them.

One of the most frightening places she encountered was Algiers where there had just been an earthquake in which 10,000 people had died. The ground was still shaking while she was there; working together with many other charities.

In Angola, during a Civil War she had to walk (very carefully!) through minefields following a local guide. Villagers were fighting against their neighbours, people being shot and stabbed and their huts burned down.

Audrey helped set up a small hospital, dealing with gashes, wounds and burns, before sending patients on to other hospitals.

While they were there they heard about a famine developing in Ethiopia. There was an urgent call to send as many people as possible to help. There had been no rain for nearly two years, animals and crops were dying.

The Red Cross had set up camps and thousands of people walked for many miles without food or water to get help.

Heartbreakingly, people couldn’t always get to the camps in time - Mothers with dying children and lone children who had lost their families on the way. With such desperation it was a dangerous place to work, but as they served up a kind of porridge in ½ coconuts, the children stuck a finger in, ate and then smiled at them, which gave the helpers joy.

In a different area of Ethiopia she treated children with dysentery, cholera and sores.

Audrey said Save the Children does a great deal of valuable work with the money which is donated to this worthwhile charity. She finished her talk with a quotation from the Bible: “Whatever you do for these the least of my brethren you do for me”

and words from the beautiful hymn -

“I the Lord of Sea and Sky,

I have heard my people cry.  Whom shall I send?

Here I am Lord, is it I Lord,

I have heard you calling in the night.

I will go Lord, if you lead me

I will hold your people in my heart.”

This was an inspirational story of a life of devotion and care told by a most remarkable lady.

Autumn Coffee Morning

We held our Autumn Coffee Morning to help the “Mothers’ Union Wheels Appeal” on Wednesday 11th October. There were homemade cakes, a Bring and Buy table, MU Merchandise and a raffle. A total of £109 was raised.

Cathedral Communion Service

On Wednesday 18th October, three of us went to the Cathedral for the 12noon Communion Service. It was St George’s turn to be Chalice Assistant, prepare and lead the prayers and to read the Lesson and Psalm.

Originally four of us were going but when one dropped out due to illness I gained the task of reading - something I had never done before in St George’s and certainly not in the cathedral!

The chosen verses from Acts 16 contained several possible mis-pronunciations - including “Phyrygian”, Bithynia” and “Samothrace” - so I consulted Google the night before.

All went well, and afterwards there was time for a quick browse in the Cathedral shop before we “retired” to the Dolphin Pub for coffee and lunch.

Janet Johnson