This time last year the impact of financial pressures on recruiting helpers for the annual pilgrimage to Lourdes was great. The fare of c.£650 for the 5 days trip to Lourdes by air from Gatwick was too high for so many students and other prospecive helpers to raise by November 30th 2009, that it began to look as though the Group would not join the annual HCPT pilgrimage for the first time since formation by the late Brian Burgess. Thankfully there was a last minute rush of sufficient applicants to make the trip as worthwhile as it has always been.
For 2010 the outlook seems far brighter. We are taking Eurostar St Pancras/Paris thence an HCPT chartered train from the Gare du Nord overnight to Lourdes and as a
result the fare is about a third cheaper than the journey by air from Gatwick. This in turn has resulted in a wealth of new voluntary helpers so much so that we are being worked hard meet and greet etc them all but have started the processes now with optimism.
The lesson issurely that even when money is tight the old saying 'where there is a will there is a way' is true.