Thursday, 27 June 2013

Do you believe in angels?

I'm not the "praying kind" but today I heard about a group of people who might well be described as angels.

My husband went for a walk on the south coast today with his dad.  They try and do a number of "man walks" every year and it's an opportunity to enjoy the countryside and shoot the breeze at the same time.

Today they were walking near some cliffs and a man wearing a high visibility vest approached them and started a conversation.  He was a Beachy Head Chaplaincy volunteer.

About 30 volunteers take turns patrolling the area near Beachy Head looking for those who are seeking the only solution they believe is left to them.  Their lives are desperate and they are looking for the exit door.

Beachy Head cliffs stand 530 feet high and are, at the same time, a beauty spot and the world's third most popular suicide location.  

Last year this volunteer chaplaincy team saved the lives of 305 people who were despondent.  In May this year they saved 39 lives but one body was recovered, In April they saved 25 lives but two bodies were recovered.

I don't know how one talks someone out of a pit of despair but I admire greatly those who try and succeed.

You, like me, had probably not heard of the Beachy Head Chaplaincy Team until today.  If you'd like to find out more, click here.

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