Cenacolo is a movement set up by an Italian nun called Sister Elvira, to support young men and women who have suffered from addiction. There are over 54 communities worldwide who rely purely on providence and prayer for their everyday needs. Unlike a rehabilitation unit there are no psychiatrists, psychotherapists, or medication. Life in the community is simple and centered on work, prayer and spiritual healing. Each community is run by recovering addicts themselves under the overall direction of Sister Elvira, who views the community as a school of life where members learn again to live with dignity and respect for themselves and each other. You do not have to believe in God to join the community but you must have a strong commitment to change the way that you have lived your life.
The Cenacolo prayer group at St. Patrick’s provides an opportunity for those who support the movement and the addicts we meet on the street and elsewhere, to come together in the spirit of prayer, solidarity and togetherness. It is hoped that through the encouragement and support that the prayer group offers, the addicts will eventually choose to enter a Cenacolo community house. Those who have already moved into a Cenacolo community continue to be strengthened and to grow in the desire to leave their old self and to put on their new. It is truly a joy to see a young man who has suffered from that temptation to find their way again in life and to accept the joy that God gives us in abundance. Cenacolo recently opened its first house in England near Kendal in Westmorland. This has been a fantastic moment in the life of Cenacolo in this country and gives hope to those that the state is not often able or equipped to deal with.
The prayer group meets at St. Patrick’s every Monday at 7.00pm and all are very welcome to come along.