Sport and Games
The Lazarists were very keen on sport and games. During the mission days (Emmaüs days) but also on other relaxation moments, the Lazarists exerted themselves. For that reason, each house or garden within Emmaüs had its own soccer team. In the beginning, the Lazarists still wore their cassocks during soccer; later on they the cassocks were replaced by shirt, shorts and real soccer boots.
Sometimes, the games were very tough, as if it concerned a match between Holland and Belgium. Once, a priest consecration was postponed because of the fact that a Lazarist had broken his leg and wasn’t able to attend the consecration.
Around 1935 the Lazarists built a large mall with a reed roof. They could also play on a mall near the Lazarists’ monastery.
Others read a book, worked hard in the various gardens or songs were sung by enthusiasts. During all these activities many horseflies were swatted, since this insect could become a real plague on Patershof. Other relaxation- and sport activities were amongst others.
During and after the war Patershof was opened; floor days were organized and Patershof also served as first refuge for the Priests of De Berckt, when they had to leave their monastery in Baarlo due to the war. Later on, many school children from the municipality visited these so-called Emmaüs days; the Lazarists organized matches and relaxation games for the citizens by way of thanks for collecting old paper in favour of the mission.
The avenues of Emmaüs are completely planted with linden trees. This will certainly strike you, when you walk over the present camping site terrain. Especially, pay attention to the symmetric planting shape (see map). The linden trees are grouped neatly from the roof tops on the main building, in 4 directions. While walking in the shadow through the linden avenues, the Lazarists thought about and discussed worldly matters in a musing and philosophical way.