Bratislava (Slovakia) With the increase in infections in Slovakia and to avoid the blockade, the Slovak government has adopted new measures to contain the Covid-19 pandemic, with checks on the entire population to track and stem the spread of the Coronavirus.
The Daughters of Mary Help of Christians of the Slovak Province of St. John Bosco (SLK) collaborated with civil and health institutions on the coronavirus tracking project by making available some rooms of the Center of free time of the city of Dolný Kubín. The FMA were able to accompany and support young people and families in this time of fear and uncertainty.
From 23 to 25 October 2020, the Animator and the sisters of St. Mary D. Mazzarello Community set up the rooms and welcomed young people and families for the administration of health tests: “We set up the premises, freeing them from the furnishings and preparing the waiting area with adequate distances, thanks to the large space in front of the Center and the playing fields”.
Some sisters of the provincial community were involved as volunteers in administrative registration and health care.
Since 31 October 2020, the Provincial Sr. Monika Skalová, participated as a volunteer and health assistant in a team operating in a square in Bratislava. “Collaborating as a religious with members of the police, the army, medical staff, and volunteers for the health of the people was an enriching experience. I am happy that I was able to put my nursing expertise into play. We strove to be cordial with the people, exchange a few words, and joke with them. Some laughed, others filled their eyes with tears. People faced everything with courage and there was no lack of words of encouragement, gratitude, and support for the personnel”.
Sr. Marta Baňasová, Provincial Councilor, served in a school in Bratislava: “It was an experience of cooperation with the team and of witness in an attentive and responsible service. An atmosphere of family work, support, and mutual help was created. We carried out checks on citizens, who came with respect, openness, and good humor”.
The FMA of Bl. Maria Troncatti Community of Nitra, who carry out pastoral activities with a Roma community and work as teachers and coordinators of the Orechov dvor Center, collaborated in the management of health checks. Sister Anna Chrkavá, an FMA of the Community, says: “There was collaboration on the part of the people and a good team atmosphere. For the lack of paramedics, I made myself available with my skills as a pharmaceutical laboratory technician. I was able to converse informally with people and I appreciated the work of the military at the service of all”.
It is not just a question of going, but also of welcoming; not only of going out, but also of making space by hosting. It is the intentionality that pushes the FMA in the world to live active citizenship.
Vivamente commossa ringrazio il Signore per le inedite esperienze di collaborazione, di servizio e di generosità ce ci avete raccontato. Il carisma del nostro amato Istituto sa trovare risposte creative sulle orme di don Bosco e di Madre Mazzarello, per affrontare situazioni di emergenza, e voi tutte siete state all’avanguardia. Mi sento partecipe del bene che state svolgendo ed assicuro la mia vicinanza con il cuore costantemente in preghiera. Grazie con affetto fraterno nello spirito salesiano.
Well done, It is so heartening to hear of the great work you are doing in these difficult times. I assure you of a remembrance in my prayers and send you an Irish blessing.
Kathleen Taylor fma