Last Friday morning I left home nice and early to travel north and then east to visit the furthest outreach of the Diocese, North East Lincolnshire! There was a very warm welcome from St Mary’s Primary school in Grimsby.
St Mary’s School, Grimsby
Lovely displays of artwork and written work around the school. And thanks to some of the chaplaincy team for getting in the photo! The CAFOD BrightenUp Assembly was made even brighter by the children of Lisieux House who were all dressed in yellow! It was lovely to share in the news of the recent fantastic achievements of the basketball and tag rugby teams who performed brilliantly in local tournaments. Harvest Fast Day will be celebrated next Friday 5 October which will include donations of food for the local food bank. Since the current Year 6 have started the school has donated nearly £4000 to CAFOD with most of their fundraising done during Lent so some of it will have been doubled due to UKAid match funding. Well done everyone. It was lovely to visit you all. If any parents/grandparents are interested in supporting your school putting their Faith in Action, join us as a school volunteer. You won’t regret it!!
Wearing my Brighten Up shoes while soaking in the sun
After an opportunity to soak up some sun on Cleethorpes Prom I then visited St Joseph’s School in Cleethorpes. Again I led the CAFOD BrightenUp assembly for Harvest Fast Day. I had met the head Mrs Pollard and some other staff and students when we took part in the Humber Bridge Cross in May. So it was great to meet up again. The children are also combining Fast Day with supporting the local food bank as well as fundraising for CAFOD. What great mission in caring for their local and global neighbours! It was also a very full Good Work Assembly with lots of awards and trophies being given out for attendance, writing and personal achievements. A very expressive and detailed report from the young girl who got a swimming certificate! Great singing, a stunning window, lovely displays of work and a very inviting library! Thank you all at St Joseph’s and I look forward to seeing your Harvest Fast Day photos from your assembly and fundraising tomorrow!
St Joseph’s School, Cleethorpes
Again, an invitation to consider becoming a CAFOD school volunteer! A great opportunity to support your school putting their Faith into Action!
Family Fast Day is on Friday 5 October and we offer an invitation to eat simply – perhaps by giving up a meal, or just having a bowl of soup – and make a donation to CAFOD? It could save someone’s life.
Every life around the world is precious, but I’d like to tell you about a mother in East Africa. Longora lives in Uganda – 14 hours from the capital – in a remote village that has no electricity, no gas and no hospital nearby.
The area is so hot and dry, people struggle to get enough clean water to survive. A few years ago, when Longora was in the late stages of pregnancy, she became seriously ill after drinking dirty water from a local river. She gave birth while she was still sick. Because of the water, her baby was also born seriously ill. She said: “Ten people died from drinking river water then. My baby died too.”
No one can bring Longora’s baby back. Hearing from her, it is clear the loss stays with her. It was obvious her community needed clean water and – thanks to donations from people like you – CAFOD repaired the well in her village and trained local people in how to maintain it, so they can fix it if it breaks again. Now Longora and her neighbours have a reliable supply of clean, safe water.
One of the many benefits of having the CAFOD Volunteer Centre at the McGuinness Centre in Roman Catholic Diocese of Nottingham is being able to pop next door to the Convent Chapel for weekday Mass. This morning we celebrated the Dedication and Consecration of the parish church of #OurLadyofPerpetualSuccour in Bulwell on this day in 1961.
Fr John wore vestments made by the Sisters of the #PoorClare community at that time. We received communion from the Chalice given to Fr Short (the PP) by his parents for his ordination in 1917. Finally Fr Anthony enthralled us with the history of the building of the church and also shared beautiful words from St Augustine about the dedication of a church – (Sermon 336,1,6: PL 38 [edit. 1861]. 1471-1472, 1475)
As the skill of construction joins together bricks, mortar and carpentry to create a place of worship and sanctuary, so are we who use it to be joined together. Whether it be the parish, the town, the diocese, our universal church.
“The work we see complete in this building is physical; it should find its spiritual counterpart in your hearts. We see here the finished product of stone and wood; so too your lives should reveal the handiwork of God’s grace.”
And so it calls to mind the work of CAFOD, founded and sustained and supported by the Catholic Community of England & Wales, living out its mission to bring about the Kingdom of God.
A very blessed start to the day.
And a reminder that we can increase the work we do by taking advantage of the few days left to double our donations! The UK Government will double donations up to and including May 12 – £5million!