The Union of Catholic Mothers at Our Lady of Lourdes, Perth, recently had a visit from members of Cenacolo House in Kendal.
The Cenacolo community was founded by an Italian nun called Mother Elvira in 1983. She was concerned about the destruction that addiction to alcohol and drugs can bring in society to a young person’s life, their families and the wider community. Mother Elvira was keen to help young people and show them a different path to take to the one they had chosen. She herself had experienced the difficulties that addictions can bring as her father had been addicted to alcohol. Mother Elvira sees the Cenacolo as a “school of life” which teaches people how to close the door on their past by healing old wounds and building a brighter future. Cenacolo gives hope and opportunity to live an addiction free life. It offers help to those who have lost direction and enables them to go forward with a new strength to face the challenges of every day.
Cenacolo should not be confused with drug rehabilitation as it is so much more. Cenacolo has 60 houses worldwide with one in the beautiful lake district at Kendal and one in Knock in Ireland.
There are no medical staff in Cenacolo only people that have already followed a similar way in life and have chosen to seek help. Recovery begins with the addict learning that they can trust the experienced house cenacolo housemate who is referred to as their ‘guardian angel’ Three representitatives from the Cenacolo house in Kendal visited us and gave very personal accounts of what brought them to the Cenacolo and how through working in the house, on the land, hard work and determination along with daily prayer they were able to free themselves from their addictions and live a more healthy,positive and spiritual life. At times their accounts were very touching and l feel we all gained a different perspective on addictions and the hope that change is possible if you want it enough and prepared to work hard and sacrifice perceived luxuries in life. In the house there are no tv’s no mobile phones and other such distractions modern life can bring. If there is no food they quite simply don’t eat and therefore they have an area of land they use to grow vegetables.