reflections, updates and homilies from Deacon Mike Talbot inspired by the following words from my ordination: Receive the Gospel of Christ whose herald you have become. Believe what you read, teach what you believe and practice what you teach...
Saturday, December 24, 2022
Preparing Christmas lunch for the poor, homeless and Ukranian refugees
The Community of Sant‘Egidio to host its traditional Christmas Lunch for the poor in Rome with extra seats around the table for Ukrainian refugees.
By Linda Bordoni
The Rome-based Sant’Egidio Community is busy preparing Christmas Lunch in the magnificent setting provided by the Church of Santa Maria in Trastevere.
As per tradition, guests of honour are the poor, the homeless, the elderly, and this year also Ukrainian refugees who have found shelter and assistance in the eternal city.
2022 marks the 40th anniversary of the very first such lunch organized by Sant’Egidio and foresees the presence of Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin.
On 25 December 1982 there were 47 people seated at that Christmas table. Since then, through the years, the community has prepared a festive Christmas lunch for 80,000 poor people in Italy and 250,000 across the world.
A powerful message of solidarity and hope
This year’s event also aims to proclaim a message of hope at a time marked by crisis and the war in Ukraine.
This year’s guests, who include some Ukrainian refugees – most of them women and their children – will be served a traditional Christmas menu of lasagne, meatloaf, lentils and dessert. There will also be a gift for each person.
Alongside Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Mayor of Rome, Roberto Gualtieri, will also be present.
Many other initiatives, including events for prison inmates, are being organized in the name of solidarity by the community, and will be held at the same time in about a hundred Italian cities and around the world.