The Christmas holidays are one of the highlights of the association of the Petits-Frères des Pauvres de Nancy. It distributes parcels to isolated and elderly people and offers them a good Christmas meal.
Christmas is a time of joy for families who take advantage of this holiday to gather around a good table and offer gifts. But it can also be a very sad time for isolated, elderly or sick people.
For the latter, as early as 1946, a man with a big heart, Armand Marquiset, created in Paris the lay association of the Little Brothers of the Poor. The aim was to go out to meet people over 50 years old suffering from loneliness and to bring them a little comfort and human warmth. This solidarity with the most destitute was expressed by various forms of help throughout the year but also by the distribution of a meal, especially at Christmas.
300 groups in France
After the 1960s, the association grew. And in the 1980s, it was structured and created 300 groups of volunteers working throughout France.
In Nancy, the association of the Little Brothers of the Poor, presided over by Maurice Chaudron, takes care of about a hundred poor, isolated or excluded people, whether they live at home or are placed in an institution.
We accompany them throughout the year,” says Michel Berthélémy, a member of the board of directors. With about 80 regular volunteers, we visit these people regularly. We also organize outings with some of them, either cinema or show outings, or summer holiday outings in the Vosges or elsewhere. And, in fine weather, on Sundays we welcome a dozen people in a large house which was bequeathed to us on the heights of Dommartemont, near Nancy. After a good convivial meal, everyone can enjoy the garden. »
A convivial meal
However, Christmas remains a special moment in the work of the Little Brothers of the Poor. For the occasion, the association received support from France Bénévolat. A large meal is served on December 25 at noon to about fifty guests at the Novotel de Laxou (54) with animation during part of the afternoon.
For those who are unable to travel, the Little Brothers of the Poor distribute festive meal trays. And, for those placed in institutions, a package of sweets.
This year, at the premises of the association in Nancy, 35 packages were prepared and distributed on Tuesday, December 24th between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. and 15 meal trays.
This is an opportunity for the volunteers to stay a little with isolated or sick people,” explains Michel Berthélémy. It’s a moment of exchange, friendship and fraternity. »
Christmas is also about thinking of others.
Les Petits Frères des Pauvres de Nancy, 150 Avenue du Général Leclerc-54000 Nancy.
e-mail : email@example.com