8th August. St. Dominic

I don’t visit many care homes at the moment unless called in for emergencies. But yesterday I had to go in and see Mary Henry, who the staff were concerned about. Mary is a famous character in Kendal as for many years she was the night sister at the old hospital. Her care for her patients and her staff was renowned. She looked after her mother for many years, was a Eucharistic Minister, and great support of the parish, as well as engaging with other denominations as well, and being a member of the Carmelite Order. She was particularly well known for wearing wellington boots at all times of the year in her later retirement years. But she is less able to get around now. Her faith has never diminished. I asked her if she wanted to receive the sacrament of the sick and her reply was, ‘If you think it right then I do, Father.’ Her prayers for everyone never stop. Our care homes are full of characters whose lives cover the whole experience of what it is to be human. Some know what is going on, others are no longer able to rememebr a lot, except for the distant past, or perhaps nothing at all. Some can communicate, others cannot. We owe a great deal to these people, whether relatives or not, and to those who care for them. This is something our society needs to take on board before the lockdown comes to an end and they can be forgotten once more.

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