Wednesday morning meant an early start, to visit Carecent at Central Methodist Church. Carecent started 25 years ago when I was minister at Central, and provides meals, drinks, clothes and friendship to people who are homeless. The volunteers who staff it come from many different churches (and none). Apparently there are currently about 200 people who use what's on offer at Carecent from time to time. One of the most noticeable changes since my time was the number of younger people using Carecent. I spoke to two young men, both of whom had become homeless at the age of 15. Two older men asked me to pray with them. Others very openly told me something of their story. I think 25 years ago when we set up Carecent we might have imagined we were providing something which would not be needed for too long. The opposite has proven to be the case.
Our visit to the York and Hull District ended on Thursday March 25th with a research day at Holy Rood House in Sowerby on issues related to clergy sexual abuse. The day was actually spent in Thorpe House (pictured), home of the dog on which James Herriott based 'Tricky woo' in his novels.