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A year of our mission supporting Asylum Seeker Women

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Sr Pat Devine refelcts on the first year of the Sisters' mission to support women Asylum Seekers in London.

I cannot believe that a year has passed since we started our mission here in Beckenham for Asylum Seeker Women. In this year we have l learnt a lot, journeyed with the ladies who have lived here with us in our community.

Sadly, the year has not brought them much help. Despite the fact that one lady had a very favourable judgement, the Home Office appealed on a point of law and it is still being investigated. This lady has a serious cancer, she has really suffered as the chemo did not agree with her, she also suffered a form of depression because of the judgement I have described. As we approach Christmas she is in a better place, but cannot breathe easily as yet since she is still in suspense about the outcome of the appeal and what will happen regarding her health.

Another lady left us in August, going to Shelter from the Storm. She also has not been successful in her appeal.

Our third lady was totally winded with the news that her appeal was turned down on every count. She can put in a fresh appeal until March, when the law changes, however she needs new evidence which in her case is extremely difficult to present.

To be honest we have felt the pain of these ladies very keenly, they are not a number, they have really suffered huge trauma and are still left with the residue effects of this in their skin. The pain they feel is very much in evidence. There is little we can do and in fact we do not know enough to be helpful in this, it is a minefield. Our aim is to provide a home, a warm welcome, a refuge where love is strong and where we can support in a family like way kind of offering balm for the suffering endured.

On Sunday another lady will join us also from DRC she has suffered greatly. Her English is limited but she is happy to come here and we are delighted to welcome her giving her all the support we can.

I ask you to join us in prayer. 


Thank you for your support it is much appreciated, and you are remembered in prayer daily.

We think of Jesus going to Egypt possibly in romantic ways seeing how our ladies suffer and try to learn how to adapt to a new culture we realise for Joseph and Mary things were possibly similar in some ways.


Happy, blessed Christmas to you all - thinking of you very specially

Sr Pat and the little family here in Beckenham.

Last modified on Tuesday, 19 December 2017 17:38


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