Harvest Fast Day – focus on El Salvador

This Harvest Fast Day we draw inspiration from the Oscar Romero prayer which will be in all the Fast Day packs.

If your parish is holding a Harvest Fast Day collection, the pack will be with all parish priest and parish volunteers in the first week of September.

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Former Step into the Gap volunteer from Wales meets Pope Francis



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


November Memorial Masses in Cardiff and Menevia


The dates for the Memorial Masses in November, the month of remembrance, are finalised.

In Menevia, the Mass will be celebrated at The Sacred Heart Church in Morriston, Swansea – on Friday 11 November at 7.15 (brief presentation on the Lampedusa Cross) and Mass at 7.30 pm.

In Cardiff the Mass will be at St Joseph’s in Penarth – Friday 25 November at 7 pm.  Refreshments will be available after Mass.

Traditionally November is when we make extra time to remember those who have died – especially family, friends and those who have left a lasting impression in our lives.

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Speaking up for CAFOD and 12,000 feet up in the Andes

Bernadette, Sue (Mumbles) Paul &  Stella (Pontyberem) and Sandra (Neath) with a Lampedusa Cross at the Swansea briefing (Mary from St David's is missing from the photo)

Two parishes in Menevia – St David’s Priory Church in Swansea and Our Lady, Queen of Peace in Llanelli hosted Fast Day briefings for some of our dedicated volunteers earlier this month.

This year the country of focus for Harvest is Bolivia.

It’s a landlocked country in central South America and one third of the country is the Andean mountain range.

It’s the poorest country in South America.

The Altiplano is a vast, inhospitable plain almost 4,000 metres above sea level.

The soil is poor quality because the area is incredibly arid.  The climate is changing and becoming increasingly unpredictable. Continue reading

Wedding bells for our office volunteer

JR Diaz and his new wifeWe are delighted to see JR Diaz, our office volunteer from the Cardiff office, say “I do” to his beautiful bride at a moving ceremony in St David’s Metropolitan Cathedral on Saturday 16 July.

JR, a keen pianist who is very active in music ministry within the church, enjoyed a wide range of hymns and songs throughout the wedding service, making it a really moving ceremony and a memorable event for the couple as well as all the guests. Continue reading

Volunteering in the Year of Mercy

UK - Southwark - Lampedusa Cross - Refugees - St George''s Cathedral - Leah Parker-Turnock.JPGCAFOD is a charity built upon the values and teachings of Catholic faith; volunteering with CAFOD can be an expression of faith, especially in the Year of Mercy. Elouise Hobbs reflects on these thoughts at the end of Volunteers Week.

During the Year of Mercy, I have been reflecting on the tireless work of our volunteers to change the lives of people who live in some of the poorest communities in the world. Our volunteers bridge the gap to help solve the poverty crisis’ by praying, acting and giving in so many different ways. Volunteers Week is a perfect time to say thank you and look at how the Jubilee of Mercy calls us to act.

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My Faith inspired me to volunteer

Sue Scanlon_Holy Family

Sue on a Schools Visit 

Sue Scanlon volunteers in the Cardiff Archdiocese and works in both Cardiff and Hereford. She has been an amazing volunteering force for over three decades and I spoke to her about her volunteering journey and why, being a volunteer now is just as important as it was when she began.

Learn more about the different volunteering roles 

“I have been volunteering intermittently since the 1980’s; at the moment I am a schools volunteer. In the past I have been involved with our parish CAFOD group, fundraising and promoting the campaigns.

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Sally celebrates volunteering for 35 year



Sally at a volunteering day

Sally Ann Meredith, a retired teacher who worked at St Alban’s, Pontypool, is continuing to educate pupils across South Wales by holding assembilies and talks about the work of Catholic charity, CAFOD.   

“As soon as I started teaching in 1980, St Alban’s, Pontypool, I became involved in organising extra curricular activities to raise awareness and funds for CAFOD.

“Long before the Hunger Games we had ‘Hunger Lunches,’ where we ate bread and soup and sang hymns, they became so popular that we were impacting on the canteen profits! Many students would fast for 24 hours raising a great deal in sponsorship and thousands of pounds were raised each fast day.

“When I decided to take early retirement I knew that I would want to continue to be involved with CAFOD’s work and have visited primary schools in both Cardiff and Menevia Diocese presenting assemblies, delivering workshops and Sixth form days.

Learn more about volunteering 

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St. Helen’s Catholic School raises £550

The Chaplaincy Team presenting Mr Coyle with a cheque for £550.

The Chaplaincy Team presenting Mr Coyle with the cheque

Recently, Mike Coyle, Education Volunteer at CAFOD visited St Helen’s School in Barry and Ms Giernalczyk, Acting Headteacher has written a report on their recent fundraising activities:

The children at St. Helen’s Catholic Infant & Nursery School recently welcomed Mr. Coyle from CAFOD to receive a cheque for £550. Continue reading