“Epsom Salt. I Need Epsom Salt.”

“Epsom Salt. I Need Epsom Salt.”

With the onset of social isolation due to the Corona virus, my church began Corona Care Calls. The effects of these calls are felt in many different ways. So far my most favorite concerns Hannelore, one of our long standing congregation members, and the right call at the right time. 

We now know that even as a young woman, Hannelore had problems with her feet. Now that she was 75+, the need for foot care had become a daily routine and a necessity. Hannelore didn’t think much about COVID-19. She was safe and well looked after in her senior residence. The newspaper was delivered to her door, she had three square meals and sometimes a special treat brought all the way into her room by a pleasant care taker, and morning exercise took place at a distance with the instructor in the hall and the seniors in their doorways. Nothing was amiss, until Hannelore realized that she would be running out of Epsom Salt in the next day or two. Having been self-sufficient all her life, she felt uncomfortable asking the staff at her senior home for help, especially since they were already going out of their way, every single day, to ensure she and her fellow residents were safe and so well taken care of. What to do?

This is when the phone rang. Hannelore picked it up and listened to the young voice introducing herself and the reason for her call. The Martin Luther Church was reaching out to all members and friends of the congregation. The person told Hannelore all about the wonderful things the church was doing to help during the extraordinary times of Coronavirus isolation. Then the young voice asked: “Is there anything you need?”

Before Hannelore could think, she had already spoken:

“Epsom Salt, I need Epsom Salt.” 

“No problem,” said the young voice, “I will go shopping tomorrow and drop it off around four at your senior residence.”

To Hannelore’s surprise, the next day, just after the evening meal, a senior residence staff dropped off a 2 kg bag of Epsom Salt. Attached was a note saying “Looking forward to calling you next week! –Brigitta.”

Almost 30 volunteers at our church are now calling people on a regular basis to stay in touch and offer their assistance. This outreach program started just one month after lockdown; the isolation measures implemented by our government to slow down the spread of COVID-19.

Iris Schweiger is Co-Team Lead of Fresh Expressions Canada and President of Martin Luther Church in Toronto ON.

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