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Question 104

Hi,Father,does the church help the poor in Cyprus?  


Answer to Question 104


I'm not sure about other towns, but in Limassol the Church runs a few food kitchens. We have one in my parish of Apostolos Andreas in Mesa Geitonia. The food is prepared in the kitchens of the Metropolis church (Katholiki) and delivered to the parishes who participate in the effort of providing food to those in need.  When the crisis was at its height, the church also had food stores that provided not only food, but many items like washing up liquid and powder, shampoos, soap, nappies etc. The Local municipalities also had food stores, but I think the only ones that still exist are those that are run by the church.  At our food kitchen we provided for about 100 families. I think now the figures are much less and about 50 families still come daily.  The church also provides sandwiches and drinks for school children whose families can’t afford to give them money to buy something from the school canteen.  The Church also gives out a small but weekly sum to hundreds of people who are truly in need. Of course this is not done arbitrarily, they are screened before they receive this help, because there are also many drug addicts who would take advantage of this help.  The church also gives yearly grants to university students whose families have economical difficulties.  Each parish also has a Woman’s Committee whose main concern is to raise money for charity works. Each year at Christmas and Easter, the money is divided to many families in need to help out with extra costs of the feasts.  Thus the church is very active in providing for the poor. A lot of people think that the church just takes and takes without giving back, but that is because the church doesn’t advertize her good works. The church works in silence fulfilling what Christ said: “when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth.” (Matth. 6:3)