In this fast-paced world with our never-ending obsession with self, it can be hard to hear the cry of the poorest and most vulnerable people in society.
But at CAFOD we believe that no-one is beyond reach and our mission is to raise awareness in our Catholic schools about the impact of our choices, the situation that refugees are facing due to conflict, persecution and climate change and to inspire children in England and Wales to pray, to act and to give through their fundraising efforts to support and empower people who are really suffering: suffering from a lack off access to water, suffering from a lack of access to education, suffering disempowerment through gender inequality; suffering from lack of access to enough food and basic healthcare; suffering from having no place to call home.
If these issues touch your heart and you want to take action, why not come along to our Education Volunteer Refresher training next Monday, 17 September between 11 and 3.30pm (lunch provided) at The Mostyn Room (adjacent to St David’s Cathedral in the heart of Cardiff and behind Marks & Spencer).
This is a vital role working alongside teachers, priests, school chaplains and catechists.
We provide you with all the training and resources you will need. And we are always on hand to support you with any questions you may have. We work in partnership with you and without you we can’t get the message out widely enough.
So it’s safe to say that joining our Education team and working with our schools is one of the most rewarding and important volunteering roles with us at CAFOD.
We can say, hand on heart, that you will relish the opportunity to spend time discussing issues of global justice with children and young people and supporting the amazing teachers we have working in our schools.
We urgently need more volunteers to join our team, so please don’t leave it to someone else to get involved – why not give us a ring on 02920 344 882 or email us to find out more.
You will be welcomed with open arms! Thank you.
Saturday 1 September Day of reflection at Ty Croeso Centre, Llantarnam Abbey from 11 am to 4 pm. (Coffee from 10.30 am). Free event, please bring a packed lunch. We are meeting on the 4th World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation – as instituted by Pope Francis.
Sunday 9 September– Share the Journey walk following Mass at Our Lady, Queen of Martyrs, Hereford.
Monday 17 September – Education Refresher Day in the Mostyn Room (next to St David’s Cathedral in Cardiff) 10-4 pm. Existing and potential new School volunteers explore the Family Fast Day resources.
Friday 21 September – Share the Journey walk at The Priory of Our Lady & St Michael, 10 Pen-y-Pound, Abergavenny NP7 5UD
Saturday 22 September – CAFOD Supporter Day at Our Lady, Star of the Sea, Promenade Terrace, Mumbles SA3 4DR. We have requested a speaker for the event, tbc.
Saturday 29 September – CAFOD Supporter Day at Our Lady, Queen of Martyrs in Hereford, following on from the Soup Kitchen (12-2) starting at 2.30-4 pm. We have requested a speaker for the event tbc.
Friday 5 October – CAFOD Family Fast Day
Saturday 6 October – Oscar Romero talk by Clare Dixon. Clare has been Head of CAFOD’s Latin America programmes for nearly 40 years – and since its inception in 2005 she has been Secretary of the Archbishop Romero Trust. Join us at The Cornerstone, Cardiff (opposite St David’s Cathedral) Time 7 pm (following Mass in the Cathedral at 5.30 pm).
14 October – Canonisation of Oscar Romero
Tuesday 16 October – CAFOD Education training Day 1 for new schools volunteers 10 am – 4 pm. The Mostyn Room, adjacent to St David’s Cathedral, Cardiff (if you are interested in joining our schools volunteer team, please contact email@example.com
Tuesday 23 October – Talk by Barbara Davies on the peace process in Colombia and an update on Hands On. Venue & timing tbc
Saturday 10 November – Campaign retreat day at Downside Abbey (10-4 pm). Countering Consumerism: Lessons from Gaudete et Exsultate. All welcome. Book here.
Monday 12 November – Memorial Mass for the Diocese of Menevia at St David’s Priory Church, Swansea at 12.30 pm. All welcome.
Sunday 18 November – World Day of the Poor
Monday 19 November – Memorial Mass for the Cardiff Archdiocese at St Helen’s Church, Nantagarew Road, Caerphilly CF83 3FB at 7 pm. All welcome.
Tuesday 27 November – CAFOD Education Training Day 2 (10-4) in the Mostyn Room, adjacent to St David’s Cathedral in Cardiff.
Thursday 29 November – Campaign Retreat Day of Reflection for parish and campaign volunteers – Ty Croeso Centre, Llantarnam Abbey (11-4). Please bring a packed lunch. All welcome. Please let us know if you are able to attend. Tel: 02920 344882 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
On Sunday, 15 July, 43 parishioners from St Helen’s RC parish in Caerphilly (plus 4 dogs) answered Pope Francis’s call to ShareThe Journey which calls on us all to be “welcoming, protecting, promoting and integrating migrants and refugees.”
Parish priest, Father John Kelly, welcomed the walkers and the group was blessed with good weather (32 degree heat!) as they set off from the church at 3 pm to walk around the beautiful and historic Caerphilly Castle.
Long-serving local MP for Caerphilly, Wayne David, joined the walk and added his support to the global campaign which is calling on the UK government to take a lead when the United Nations meet in September and December this year to agree new global agreements on refugees and migrants.
These agreements will set the tone for many years to come on how refugees are treated and welcomed around the world.
“Refugees are not numbers to be distributed and allocated, but persons with a name, a story, with hopes and aspirations.”
It’s volunteers week (1-7 June) and we want to say publicly how enormously grateful we are for all that YOU, our volunteers, do in our parishes and schools. Without your prayers, support and commitment to CAFOD we could never achieve as much as we do. You are invaluable! THANK YOU!
This week is an ideal opportunity to ask the question: “What is it that motivates you to volunteer for CAFOD?”
One of our wonderful volunteers is Sarah O’Kane who lives in Swansea. Sarah is an invaluable part of our Education volunteer team covering the Menevia diocese. She is also a parish volunteer at Our Lady, Star of the Sea in Mumbles.
“I’m motivated by trying to act as Jesus would towards others. I like fundraising for CAFOD because as an Agency it helps to make the world a fairer place. I feel a sense of solidarity with those combatting enormous difficulties.
CAFOD helps people to help themselves e.g. setting up a struggling farmer with enough fish and tools to build a pond and start a fish farm.
I like the fact that CAFOD projects are sustainable because of the way they work with local partners who have the knowledge needed in setting up and maintaining a new venture.
I like the way CAFOD works with people regardless of their beliefs. Continue reading
Bishop Tom endorsed Share the Journey, the global campaign launched by the Holy Father in September last year, as he joined other world leaders and bishops in making the “Reach Out” gesture of welcome – which is at the heart of the campaign – stretching his arms out wide.
“Hope is what drives the hearts of those who depart… it is also what drives the hearts of those who welcome: the desire to meet each other, get to know each other, to dialogue.” Pope Francis.
The Share the Journey campaign is being supported by more than 200 Catholic organisations around the world. CAFOD and Caritas Social Action in England and Wales (CSAN) and Caritas sisters agencies in over 40 countries.
The campaign is calling on all governments, and us, as individuals, to play our part in welcoming and protecting people who are forced to flee their own homes because of persecution, poverty and emergencies.
Inspired by Pope Francis’ special concern for people on the move, we are asking the people of England and Wales to step up and make their voices heard as world leaders draw up ambitious new UN agreements (compacts) on migration and refugees in September and December of this year. There are many resources available to support you, but one of the easiest ways to add your voice is by signing the online petition.
“If we bond with refugees and migrants, we will break down the barriers with which some are trying to separate us. The campaign reaches out to recognise, restore and share our common humanity.” Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, President of Caritas Internationalis
To support the campaign we are attempting to walk 24,900 miles – the distance around the whole world. We are hoping that many parishes across the Menevia diocese will get involved in this act of solidarity, to Share the Journey with our global neighbours fleeing their homes.
Every step you take, together with others from across the country, will send a message to world leaders that we want them to step up too; to act with courage and compassion.
If you want to get involved, you can download a copy of the Share the Journey organiser’s guide to get all the information you need. And there are free campaign (cards) which you can order or please get in touch with us and we can support you as much as possible.
One of the most important questions we can ask ourselves as individuals, communities and countries at this time of mass movements of people and global doubt is ‘Do I allow fear to prevail in my heart, or do I allow hope to reign?’
“Through ‘Share the Journey’ we hope to dispel fear and understand why so many people are leaving their homes at this time in history. We also want to inspire communities to build relationships with refugees and migrants. We want to shine a light and lead the way. Migration is a very old story but our campaign aims to help communities see it with new eyes and an open heart.” Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manila
You may want to know more about the position of the Catholic Church in England and Wales on the refugee and migrant crisis in Europe?
I hope this helps: CAFOD’s mandate from the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales is to support poor communities overseas. CSAN (the Catholic Social Action Network) is the social action arm of the Catholic Church for work in England and Wales. Their members support refugees who have already arrived in the UK, and they do advocacy work on poverty in the UK. Together CAFOD and CSAN form Caritas England and Wales.
Both organisations support the Share the Journey campaign.
The Herefordshire deanery of parishes attended a presentation on Share the Journey, followed by Mass at Our Lady, Queen of Martyrs in Hereford on Tuesday, 8 May.
Our thanks to the Dean, Fr Matthew Carney for his kind hospitality and welcome.
Share the Journey is a global campaign launched by Pope Francis in Autumn 2017. The Holy Father is hoping that each and every one of us will step up and show our support for refugees and migrants.
The meeting was called to give more background to the campaign and what it is calling for and to ask our supporters and their fellow parishioners to get together to organise a walk in their individual parish – to show solidarity with our neighbours who are fleeing their homes.
Every step we each take, together in our parishes, with our fellow townspeople, with other faith groups, will send a message to world leaders that we want them to step up too.
The aim is to walk 24,900 miles around the world – it isn’t as difficult as you might imagine… you don’t have to attempt the strenuous Pen y Fan and Corn Du circular walk or the Black Hill (Crib y Garth) in the Black Mountains in Herefordshire… you can just walk inside your church, around the pews, slowly, in pairs – holding the CAFOD action card in your hand, to guide your conversation.
You might walk around the church a couple of times – you might achieve half a mile each, but with a group of people, all walking together, the miles will soon add up…
The action cards include a story, prayers and questions for reflection; a message to send to the Prime Minister, Theresa May, calling for global agreements which put the human dignity of people on the move at their heart.
You can download a Share the Journey Organiser’s guide and if you order any of the petition cards, you will be sent a copy of the organiser’s guide automatically.
There is an informative Share the Journey factsheet with all the information you need at your fingertips to get started and which you can share with your fellow parishioners.
If you are thinking of inviting your MP, then why not take a look at this template for ideas which you can then personalise.
If you would like us to come along to your parish to give a short presentation on the campaign, we would be delighted to support you.
Lastly, if your parish is getting involved – please, please let us know when and where!
We are here to help publicise your good work and we want to do that as effectively as possible.
You might like to think about holding a walk or card signing during Refugee Week which is from 16-24 June. Some frequently asked questions can be found here.
There is a Share the Journey online petition here which you can sign. Please encourage others to do the same. Thank you.
Here’s the Health and Safety guide for your walk.
If you can’t get together with others to organise a walk, please can we encourage you to organise a petition card signing event after Mass.
Don’t forget to send us any photos you take, and if you have enough time, a few details about what motivated you to get involved and raise your voice in solidarity?
Her mission was to find enough sponsors to reach her goal of funding a CAFOD World Gift – a Health Centre. This amazing World Gift can pay for the running costs of a life-saving clinic in a remote community. It keeps the clinic stocked with medicines, medical equipment and even provides petrol for the clinic ambulance, giving vulnerable people vital access to much needed healthcare.
Read Jenny’s moving account in her own words… Continue reading
Kayleigh is one of our Step into the Gap programme volunteers, who is leaving to visit our partners in Sierra Leone tomorrow. We wish her a safe journey and will keep her and all the Gappers in our prayers.
Here’s an insight from Kayleigh on the eve of her departure on January 24.
On Saturday 18 November, CAFOD supporters from across the Archdiocese of Cardiff travelled to the peaceful environs of the Tŷ Croeso centre just outside Cwmbran in south-east Wales (for those of you who don’t know this beautiful part of the world) for a retreat on Blessed Oscar Romero, lead by Libby Abbott from our Campaigns team in Romero House, London.