Over 400 residents will be spending there first Christmas in sanpa this year.
Many former residents returned to San Patrignano to exchange wishes. Gifts such as “La Saponaria” soap bars and Lindt chocolate were given for Christmas.
A Christmas filled with warmth and enjoyment shared amongst the 1300 residents of San Patrignano. After years of living on the margins of society, with the difficulty of finding their place in the world, to now be able to find a safe haven, 423 precisely, have passed Christmas here for the first time. Of these, 49 have entered the last month, 15 on Christmas Eve, when the community, as usual, opens its doors to anyone who is in need.
For all of them these have been and will be days of celebration, to share with those who have became their second, if not, their first family, surrounded by the affection, and someday will be ready to return the favor and help out the new residents.
“It was an important year” – explains Antonio Tinelli, president of San Patrignano – “The numbers are never enough to show the commitment that we put behind everything we do, but it says a lot about the current situation on the drug problem in our country. The residents that entered into the Community were approximately 50 more than 2015, adding up to 350. But the requests for help are those that affect us most. Receiving about 5000 requests via phone, Skype, email and letters and that unfortunately are not always followed up, without helping those cases in deciding to make the difficult choice of entering.”
Many former guests came back to visit San Patrignano
A Christmas filled with joy, although it makes us think about the many former residents who have finished the course this year: “There were close to 264, who chose to return for Christmas and a few others that will go home after the holidays. Here, seeing the light in their eyes after a four-year program with is the best gift that we can receive in return. I send them all my best wishes, but also to those who still face the community program to later be able to turn their dreams into reality. ”
Our Christmas trees
It was a true feast in the magnificent dining room of San Patrignano decorated for the occasion, with the Christmas lights covering the entire ceiling and many Christmas trees made with reclaimed barrel wood, decorated by each sector.
Eve and toast
For all residents of the community, on December 24, we held the traditional Christmas Eve dinner serving Maltagliati with chickpeas, cod with mashed potatoes, vegetable strudel, mixed salad and pineapple with whipped cream. Following the Holy Mass celebrated by Father Fiorenzo Baldacci in a packed auditorium, with many former guests of the community that arrived in San Patrignano to share the event.
Subsequently, the Christmas toast in the dining room: almost half a kilometer of tables for more than 1600 people who celebrated with champagne and cake, then take part in the exciting delivery of gifts for each one of the residents. Comprising: soaps graciously offered by La Saponaria and chocolate donated by Lindt & Sprüngli. The following day for all the residents on Christmas dinner according to local tradition: there’s Cappelletti in broth, 100 thousand of which are prepared on Christmas Eve by the kitchen, residents and some of the mothers. Boiled beef and chicken with parsley salsa, mustard, chard, potatoes and red beets, whipped cream and oranges were also made during this time.