On Friday, the church of Bonnevoie hosted a memorial service for the thirty homeless people who passed away in 2023.
The service has become a tradition and this year's slogan was "Don't leave anyone standing in the rain."
A broken umbrella was set up in the centre of the church, which was progressively repaired with new fabric during the mass. 'Many people are left out in the rain in our society,' laments Priest Nico Weiler.
"You come across this in many areas of our society, where we don't show enough support for people who shout and scream for help. But that's exactly what we do every week on Tuesdays by handing out food, drink and clothes and chatting to each other. "
Between 160 and 180 people come by every week, emphasises Jij Linster-Besch from the social team in Bonnevoie. She explains how the idea of the mass for the deceased came about:
"Back then, we still had a telephone booth here where a Luxembourger froze to death inside. That shocked us to the core and made us take an initiative."
During the mass, Bishop Leo Wagener took up the topic of begging and emphasised that there are different forms of mendicity. He said that with various people who ask for money, you can recognise from their posture alone that they are crushed by the world:
"If you go so far as to make yourself as small as a dog and just hold out your cup, I think about how you can't be very far from self-loathing."
The volunteers agree that there is an absolute need for people who are committed to this and who support those affected to keep raising their heads so that they no longer have to hide.