Romero Festival in South Wales (9-15 March)

Today brought wonderful news from the Vatican: Pope Francis has recognized a second miracle from Blessed Oscar Romero which puts him on the path to canonization.

He was beatified by Pope Francis in May 2015.

Romero was Archbishop of San Salvador, the capital of El Salvador. He was assassinated on 24 March 1980 as he was celebrating Mass.

At the time, El Salvador was in the grip of a cruel civil war between guerrilla forces on the left and a dictatorial government on the right.

When he was appointed, Oscar Romero was seen as a “safe” pair of hands but during his three short years as Archbishop, and seeing the oppression and violence at first hand, he became an outspoken critic of the injustice he was witnessing all around him. Continue reading

Rohingya Crisis Appeal

More than 500,000 people are now estimated to have fled to Bangladesh, escaping violence in Rakhine State in neighbouring Myanmar. Needs are so great that the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC), of which CAFOD is a member, has launched an emergency appeal for the refugees. Here you can watch a impassioned appeal by Wales’ First Minister, Carwyn Jones. Continue reading

Celebrating Oscar Romero’s Centenary

To mark the Centenary year of Oscar Romero, both Therese and I attended the Ecumenical Evensong in Westminster Abbey to pay tribute to this truly inspirational, soon to be, saint.

It is hard to separate our work in CAFOD from the witness of Blessed Oscar Romero with the poor in his own country in El Salvador. Even before he was assassinated in 1980 for speaking out on behalf of the poorest in, Monsenor Romero, as he is known by the Salvadoran people, was already a saint in their eyes.  Continue reading

Magnficent Mumbles response to Lent and East Africa Crisis appeals

Give, Fast, Pray

Giving alms, Jesus teaches us, means making the needs of others our own.  In his message for Lent, Pope Francis said that:

 “Lent is a favourable season for opening the doors to all those in need and recognising in them the face of Christ. Each of us meets people like this every day.”

Joy Stafford, Tess O’Donahue, Anne Lane, Sue Philippart, Sarah O’Kane and Diane Davies

For CAFOD’s Lenten appeal, the parish of Our Lady, Star of the Sea in Mumbles hosted a tasty soup and bread lunch which was provided by the ladies of the parish.

Continue reading

Meet Sister Yvonne

sryvCome and meet our overseas partner who is living out Pope Francis’ call to hear the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor. Sr Yvonne, who works in Zambia, will be sharing the inspiring story of her work on livelihoods and how she is supporting some of the most vulnerable communities to adapt to climate change. Continue reading

Former Step into the Gap volunteer from Wales meets Pope Francis

 

eleanor-meets-the-pope

Eleanor met Pope Francis at the Vatican

A former CAFOD Step into the Gap volunteer and Swansea University graduate has been specially selected to travel to a prestigious conference in Rome where she met with Pope Francis.

Eleanor Margetts, who grew up in Bridgend and attended Archbishop McGrath Catholic Comprehensive School, has previously spent some time volunteering in the CAFOD South Wales office in Cardiff. It was through this volunteering experience that Eleanor originally heard about and applied to attend the conference.

Read about Eleanor’s story on the CAFOD website

eleanor

Christ the King ‘brighten up’ for CAFOD

img_0378Pupils from Christ the King Catholic Primary School in Cardiff all took the ‘brighten up’ theme of our Harvest appeal to heart. Putting on a full production for parents, Year 2&3 created their own song and delivered an inspirational assembly on the story of Ruben in Bolivia.

The children had also made cakes which were being sold to the parents at the assembly, with all money going to support CAFOD’s work around the world.

Kieran O’Brien, who attended the event said:

The school had done an amazing job, and the pupils were so inspirational. Their play, based on the story of Bolivian boy Ruben, touched upon themes of sharing, caring and loving our neighbour. I can’t see how any parent who attended was not moved by such a wonderful assembly.

 

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Remembering Bernie

Photo_of_Bernie_looking_10yrs_youngerIt is hard to believe that a year has passed since we lost our beloved and very much admired colleague Bernie Mills. The anniversary of her passing, on the 1 Oct, was remembered sincerely by her colleagues through Masses and personal reflection Those who worked closely with Bernie absolutely respected her and were touched by her real passion and concern for the work of CAFOD. Her passing was a complete shock, given that she had no previous signs of any ill-health or concerns, and was on the evening before she was to attend a Harvest Fast Day lunch in Bridgend. Continue reading