Belfast’s Black Santa prepares for Good Samaritans’ Service

Wednesday January 30th 2013

Black Santa, Dean John Mann.Good Samaritans from all walks of life will be gifted monies raised by the Christmas 2012 Black Santa Sit–out on the steps of St Anne’s Cathedral.

The annual Good Samaritans’ Service takes place in the Cathedral on Sunday February 3, when a total of £192,000 will be handed out to 207 charities.

The amount raised, while not hitting the Dean of Belfast’s target of £200,000, was up on the 2011 total of £185,000, and Dean John Mann said this was a ‘fantastic result’ considering the economic climate and disruption in Belfast due to the flag protests.

Dean Mann said that the 1p, 2p, 5p, 10p and 20p coins, which people brought in great quantity in everything from plastic bags to sweet tins, amounted to over £4,700 alone.

“I would like to thank everyone who has contributed to the Cathedral Charity Sit–out last Christmas and my friends and colleagues who helped in the collection,” the Dean said.
Mayor Gavin Robinson.

“The generosity of people in our community is proven time and again from large cheques and thick envelopes of notes to a child emptying a piggy bank. As much as anything, it is the cheery smile and greeting with which it is given.”

The Dean added: “It is a privilege to be part of this annual effort for the City of Belfast and if we all start now, putting away a few coins each week, I have every hope we will reach the £200,000 target at the next sit–out, Christmas 2013, but let us acknowledge at this point that £192,000 is a fantastic result!”

The cheques will be distributed by the Lord Mayor of Belfast, Alderman Gavin Robinson, and his wife Lindsay, Lady Mayoress, at the service beginning at 3.30pm on Sunday February 3.

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