This November we are holding a special online Memorial Mass on All Souls Day to pray for our supporters and loved ones who have died.
For most of us, 2020 has been one of the most challenging years we’ve ever experienced, and the loss of our loved ones during these difficult times may have seemed unbearably hard.
At a time like this it’s important for us to remain a virtual community and stand together in prayer to remember those who are no longer with us. With all the restrictions still affecting our churches, we are hosting a special online Memorial Mass on All Souls Day.
At Mass we will present a Book of Remembrance which includes names of supporters who have sadly passed away during the year. We would be honoured to remember your loved ones in this way, so please don’t hesitate to add the names of your loved ones that you would like us to pray for.
We hope you can join us in our LIVE Memorial Mass on Monday 2 November at 6pm. Mass will be celebrated by CAFOD’s Chair of Trustees, Bishop John Arnold, with music, readings and prayers from CAFOD staff and supporters.
In his new encyclical, Fratelli Tutti, Pope Francis writes of ‘dark clouds over a closed world’, evoking the uncertainty we have about the future.
Millions more vulnerable families around the world are now struggling with food shortages and loss of income as a result of coronavirus. Pope Francis reminds us that ‘despite these dark clouds’ there are ‘new paths of hope’. He tells us ‘God continues to sow abundant seeds of goodness in our human family.’ The generosity of CAFOD’s supporters is proof of these seeds of goodness. In Brazil, CAFOD’s partners are helping to distribute emergency food packages to families in urban areas unable to earn money and to assist farmers safely sell their produce. In Sierra Leone, Sister Gertrude and her fellow doctors and nurses at the Handmaids Health Clinic and Maternity Unit now have personal protective equipment so they can treat patients safely. In Cambodia, migrant worker Pheng has participated in training in rice farming so that she can overcome travel restrictions and find work in her home country. In Fratelli Tutti, Pope Francis looks at the world today through the lens of the well-known parable of the Good Samaritan.
Pope Francis writes ‘the parable shows us how a community can be rebuilt by men and women who identify with the vulnerability of others, who reject the creation of a society of exclusion, and act instead as neighbours, lifting up and rehabilitating the fallen for the sake of the common good.’ This year, CAFOD’s Family Fast Day looks very different. Coronavirus restrictions mean our parishes in Hallam cannot come together in all the normal ways to fundraise or gather for soup lunches or coffee mornings to support our brothers and sisters around the world. But now, more than ever it is vital to come together as a community, even from a distance. CAFOD has created a programme of free events between Thursday 8 and Sunday 11 October to enable people to gather online as a big Church community. Everyone is welcome and there is something for everyone. Please invite your friends and family. Let us recognise Christ in our abandoned or excluded brothers and sisters in the global South and respond to Pope Francis’ call to ‘care for the needs of every man and woman, young and old, with the same fraternal spirit of care and closeness that marked the Good Samaritan.’ Find out more at http://www.cafod.org.uk/fastday or click on the links below to register.
Throughout September our volunteers have been meeting online to prepare for CAFOD’s traditional Harvest appeal. Normally we would be planning parish events such as frugal meals. We would be coming together to give thanks for the good things of God’s creation, and to share what we have with our poorest brothers and sisters overseas.
At this time of great need during the coronavirus pandemic, people are reaching out in hope and love, and we know even small acts of kindness can make all the difference to those suffering at this time. Through our global church network, CAFOD workers on the ground have been sharing how they are responding to the challenges exacerbated by the pandemic, compelling us all to do as much as we can help them relieve suffering and save lives:
We are all called to be part of the response and now more than ever and we need to embrace this spirit of togetherness. This Family Fast day will be like no other. We are unable to come together in person as we have done before but we still need to reach out beyond our homes and parishes, to help the poorest and most vulnerable people in the world to survive, rebuild and heal.
We have all felt the impact of this terrible disease and CAFOD is committed to helping those who are facing the worst of the coronavirus. Please invite others to:
Share the appeal as far as possible using social media and all other communication networks you have.
We have sent envelopes to parishes, but you can also donate by text – Text CAFOD to 70085 to donate £10. Texts cost £10 plus one standard rate message and you’ll be opting in to hear more about our work and fundraising by telephone and SMS. If you’d like to give £10 but do not wish to receive marketing communications, text CAFODNOINFO to 70085.