Parishioners in Hillsborough are organising a simple meal to be in solidarity with communities around the world who struggle to get food, as part of this year’s CAFOD Lent fundraising campaign.
On Sunday 10th March, Mass goers at Sacred Heart Catholic church will also enjoy a simple ‘Family Fast day’ community meal, to raise funds for CAFOD.
The donations will go towards helping CAFOD to reach more people around the world who are currently facing some of the devastating effects of climate change.
The money will go towards teaching people new farming skills, providing hardy seeds that grow despite droughts. As well, it will support teaching communities new skills like mechanics and tailoring to help them adapt their livelihoods to survive when unpredictable weather hits.
Ailsa Rodgers is one of many volunteers who promote CAFOD’s work in Sheffield, she said ” I am spurred on to support CAFOD ‘s ‘Family Fast Day’, by the injustice in our world. A light soup lunch for us may equate to a hearty meal for some of those we support”
Angela Powell, CAFOD’s local representative, added: “It is amazing to see our local community rallying together to help our global sisters and brothers. “The generosity from parishioners at Sacred Heart is a lifeline for women, men and children all over the world. Thank you so much for your compassion this Lent.”
Climate change is the single biggest threat to reducing poverty. Whether it is floods destroying homes or unpredictable seasons leading to failed harvests, climate change is undoing years of our work together to improve people’s lives.
Heating Our Common Home! The sun shone warmly as CAFOD supporters, along with members of Christian Aid and Sheffield Wildlife Trust, met with Louise Haigh MP for Sheffield Heeley to discuss the actions needed to urgently address the problems of Climate Change.
This hard-working MP was knowledgeable about the issues and shared links and advice to help with campaigning at local, national and international levels as well as committing to keep raising the issues herself, whenever possible amidst Brexit, when Parliament resumes on 3rd September.
We talked about the fact that aid money should not be used to support fossil fuel projects. Instead of lifting people out of poverty, this aid money is burdening poorer nations with outdated technology which will only make the climate crisis worse. Instead, it should go towards local renewable energy projects that we know benefit the poorest communities. It is important to tweet or write via our MPs to Mr Alok Sharma, the Minister for the Department for International Development (DfID) with our concerns. Louise also spoke of the need to safeguard the 0.7% GDP that funds the Overseas Aid budget and ensure this is not subverted for the UK’s self-interests. Our MPs need letters from us to show them that we care about these issues! If you are interested in writing to your MP about this and other issues, please consider becoming an MP Correspondent with CAFOD. You can help ensure the voices of those living in poverty are heard in Parliament, just sign up here.
We also need to make changes in our own lives to better care for creation. Despite the UK’s commitment to the Paris Agreement targets to minimise temperature rises to 1.5À°C, if some private companies continue unchanged, they alone could exceed the agreed levels of carbon emissions. 80% of fossil fuels need to stay in the ground if climate targets are to be met. As a group we discussed what Pension Fund managers are doing about this. Current investment returns rely on the expectations that these reserves will be tapped, and the oil/gas sold. How will investors be compensated if this becomes legally impossible? What are their plans to move to growth assets in low carbon infrastructure? Following our meeting we have decided to write to our pension fund managers to query investments held in companies promoting fossil fuels. Closer to home we are going to look at how we source and use our own domestic energy.
We were pleased to see that recently the Bishops have signed a contract to supply renewable energy to over 4000 UK Catholic churches and schools. Join in responding to Pope Francis’ call to Care for Creation by making changes in your home too by switching your energy supplier to a green energy provider – as well as remembering to switch things off when not needed! If you’ve not done so already, have a Creation Celebration Mass in your parish. There are plenty of resources to help from CAFOD, Share food, ideas, films and fun to encourage each other to take more steps forward together to care for our common home.
Everyone loves visiting other people’s gardens and the weekend of 29th and 30th June is an opportunity to see some of Castleton’s Secret Gardens. There’s another reason too. Maria Kenyon, a CAFOD volunteer, not only opens her hillside garden but the Hope Valley CAFOD Group serves tea, coffee and very excellent cakes. This year the money raised will go to the Cyclone Idai Appeal. Please come along and visit all of the gardens (tickets at the Post Office) or just pop along to The Stones, Castleton where Maria and co will give you a warm welcome.
When people from all over the Diocese of Hallam gathered with Bishop Ralph at St Marie’s Cathedral for a Creation Celebration, he renewed Pope Francis call in Laudato Si, ‘Living our vocation to be protectors of God’s handiwork is essential to a life of virtue; it is not an optional or a secondary aspect of our Christian experience.’
The news reports show the increasing frequency and severity of the impacts of climate change across the world – including here in the UK. Bishop Ralph warned that we are rapidly approaching the tipping point. Yet we still have chance to mitigate the worst effects if we act now. Continue reading →