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Monday, 14 January 2013

Bonn and Cologne, a parish with a heart

Parish life in St Boniface, Bonn and All Saints Cologne continues to flourish. The Revd Andrew Sillis, chaplain, (above left)  has now completed his first year in post which will all new appointments is normally a time to listen, learn and get to know the parish. He is now looking forward to working with the lay leadership leadership in framing a vision for the parish's mission in the future. Confirmations (and a reception from the Roman Catholic Church) were celebrated last Sunday in a joint service for the two congregations held in All Saints, Cologne, so new and committed disciples being actively recruited! The Reader, Mr Richard Gardiner, (above right) is in the final stages of preparation for ordination, so there some exciting days ahead for the parish in 2013.

I learned of one very moving outreach project of the parish while I was there: the Herzkissen or heart cushion project. Two local hospitals which treat women with breast cancer are being supplied by the Anglican Churches in Bonn and Cologne with heart-shaped, soft pillows, made by members of the parish. These are designed to give support under the arm and thus much needed comfort to women following breast-surgery. The heart shape also signifies the love and prayers of the Christian family as these women recover from what is often very painful and worrying procedures. Many moving expressions of gratitude are received by the parish for these gifts. About 50 are distributed by the hospitals each month.

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