CAFOD thank you, and looks forward to working together in 2023, for a world transformed, guided by the Spirit

At the start of the new year, we give thanks for all we were able to achieve together in 2022, remaining in solidarity with our brothers and sisters around the world. The women who founded CAFOD, whose 60th Anniversary we celebrated in 2022, would be proud the legacy of dignity, hope, and compassion has continued. Thanks to the love and generosity of supporters in the Catholic community in Hallam, we have been able to continue to work in partnership with inspirational community leaders, and church communities overseas. We are very aware of the challenges faced by all, be they economic, political, or environmental, and we keep the most vulnerable in our hearts and minds.  Inspired by their hope, we respond with prayer and practical support to ensure local experts have what they need to put their creative ideas to tackle adversity, into action.  In the context of a post covid world, war in Ukraine affecting supplies of basic needs everywhere, and devasting climate events, CAFOD was able to fund humanitarian relief and help people to adapt their livelihoods to sustain themselves and live the dignified life God intends for all. We start our new year in the faith we will continue to work together for a world transformed, guided by the Spirit. 

So to begin 2023, this Lent CAFOD is supporting families with the skills and tools they’ve asked for to fight the climate crisis. In Bangladesh, one of the most at-risk countries from the effects of the climate crisis,  14-year-old Dristy and her mum Rupali are building seed beds and planting palm trees to protect their crops from flooding and cyclones that used to devastate both their homes and crops. Now, she passes these techniques on to her friends, some of whom have begun planting saplings of their own.

Thanks to local organisations supported by CAFOD who have worked alongside the village and share cutting-edge techniques, Rupali teaches her daughter how to plant diverse crops, build seed beds, use discarded household items to grow saplings and plant palm trees that protect their crops from the impact of regular cyclones and seawater flooding. They are doing what they can to help themselves but so many others are still without the resources or training they need.

To give thanks for the impact of your support and to prepare for Lent, all are welcome to join us at a Mass near you, followed by an opportunity to meet after and hear more about CAFOD’s work.

31st Jan, 10 am: CAFOD Mass, St William of York, Sheffield S11 8TL  

3rd Feb, 12 pm: CAFOD Mass, St Peter in Chains, Doncaster, DN1 2AA

Could you help us this Lent Family Fast Day – Friday 3rd March 2023?

During and since the pandemic, many of our long-serving parish volunteers have stepped away from activities in their parishes and while we are working to find new volunteers to take over the role, it would be great to hear from people who would be willing and able to help out this year by:

Giving the fast day talk in your parish at Masses on the weekends of 25/26th February or 4/5th March

Helping to distribute the collection envelopes that are sent to your parish

Or by using one of our Zettle devices or QR lanyards to collect online payments in parishes that no longer take cash donations

There may be young people in the parish who would be willing to help with this –could you ask them?

I can send you the talk and other information if you can help, just email me: [email protected]  

Do you enjoy walking?

We’re excited to invite you to take part in CAFOD’s Big Lent Walk, our newly relaunched challenge to walk 200km over 40 days to help people overcome poverty. 

That’s right – that’s 5km a day and you’re in good time to get in plenty of training!  You can walk, run, skip, or stroll your 200km, when and where you choose, alone or with friends. You’ll be among thousands of people up and down England and Wales conquering your 200km targets in time for Easter. 

Last year, many of our schools, individuals and some parishes took part in our walking challenge, Walk Against Hunger during Lent. This year we’re asking you to join us in our Big Lent Walk. I have signed up to do it again myself and you can sign up here:

The money you raise will help people as they overcome poverty. Remember: every step you take is a step closer to a fairer world. Let’s tell poverty to jog on!