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Slovakia

A Centre for youth and families :
As soon as possible!

Situated in eastern Slovakia, around 22 miles (35 km) from the Ukrainian border, the parish of Saint Stephen in Kamenica nad Cirochou, has a Catholic congregation around 2,600 strong. Compared with other parts of the country, this region is struggling economically and has a high unemployment rate.

As a result of this struggle, many children are left with only one of their two parents because their mother or father must travel to another part of the country.  Sometimes, they must even leave and go abroad to search for work that will allow them to feed their family. This in itself is a major problem and is often the source of great harm for the families.

 

In addition, there are three Roma communities within the parish and the pastoral and social care of the Roma people represents a major challenge for the Catholic Church in Slovakia. Father Peter Sepesi is particularly committed to the youth and family apostolate for these reasons.  He organizes gatherings for children and young people and a whole range of other pastoral and social activities to meet the needs of the families he serves.

 

However, there is a major problem – in that the parish has no suitable premises for all these wonderful pastoral activities. And so, a few years ago, the basement rooms of the presbytery were made available for this purpose. However these two rooms are poorly suited to the purpose since the ceilings are low and the rooms poorly ventilated, poorly lit and also very cold. Despite it all, the rooms are used every day for: Youth Group meetings and children‘s groups, Mass servers‘training sessions, Confirmation classes, Children‘s choir rehearsals, evangelization courses and much more.

Construction of the youth and family ministry center in the parish Kamenica nad Cirochou

 

If the numbers are too large, then the meetings are held in the refectory of the primary school – but the parish has to make arrangements every time with the school. There are also problems with the summer camps for the children organised by the parish each year with tents set up in the parish gardens because when the weather is bad, it is very difficult to find alternative venues to house the program and facilities to feed the children.

 

The parish community has a vision of a new building for their future activities! It would be constructed on the grounds and would include a hall with a capacity for 60 people along with other smaller rooms.

 

Father Peter has asked us to help them with the construction of this pastoral centre.
Thanks to our benefactors,
we were able to promise Saint Stephen’s $72,500 CAD dollars for to fulfill their vision.

 


 

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