Sharing the Journey from the Cathedral to Bulwell

Today I joined 10 others as we walked the 4.5 miles from St Barnabas Cathedral to the CAFOD Volunteer Centre in Bulwell.  We gathered in prayer before leaving on our journey; remembering those who are forced to flee their homes because of conflict, persecution, hoping for a safer and better future – many hoping that they will be able to return home.Cathedral 1

We followed the Tram route and then stopped at St Mary’s Hyson Green where we were offered refreshments and use of the facilities by the CJSP sisters! Continuing along the tram route a bit further, we then crossed the road just after Wilkinson Street Tram Stop and followed the Leen Valley Way……… a hidden part of Nottingham and a real hidden gem! Then out onto Highbury Vale and up Piccadilly, finally arriving at the Volunteer Centre 2 hours later. Jo was there to meet us with a welcome cuppa and biscuits and cakes!

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49.5 miles in total we have added to the ‘#sharejourney totaliser! Well done Liz and Patricia for organising it. Special thanks to Demi and Emily our young walkers who took turns carrying the Lampedusa Cross and wearing my Cordaid bracelet, made from lifejackets abandoned on Lesbos. Then Dominic, Sue and Krsytyna from Holy Cross parish in Hucknall joined us – we presented them with the Lampedusa Cross and they set off on their walk to Hucknall.

Organise a walk and add your miles to the campaign

What is really humbling and inspiring is that we are not only walking in solidarity with migrants and refugees.  This is a global Catholic campaign, launched by Pope Francis last September.

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By taking action, by taking part in parish or school or group or individual walks, we are uniting with our worldwide Catholic brothers and sisters to remember and pray for the needs of all our global brothers and sisters who are on the move; the majority of whom are displaced in their own countries or in refugees camps in neighbouring countries.

 

 

 

Grandma Duty – Attending Stations of the Cross

On Grandma duty today and attended English Martyr’s Primary School in Long Eaton to join staff, students, parents and grandparents for the last day of term and a most beautiful and moving Stations of the Cross.EM stations 1

Mrs Mann informed us that each class had been preparing all week for their ‘station’, each presenting some visual to share.  The children processed into the hall so quietly and prayerfully.  As each Station was announced we reflected on scripture and each class presented their work.

The choir performed  ‘Something inside so strong’ – beautifully and powerfully sung!  Wonderful images were presented for the 4th Station, when Jesus met His mother; the children having written about the qualities of their own mothers.   We ended with the 12th Station, the chaplaincy team placing candles on and around the wooden cross which was placed in the middle of the hall.  EM stations 2

Donate to CAFOD this Lent

A most beautiful service!  Thank you especially to the Chaplaincy Team who led the service and afterwards told me about their CAFOD fundraising activities during Lent; sponsored silence, sponsored run, nail bar!  Their eyes lit up when I reminded them that all their donations would be doubled this Lent, thanks to UK government!

What a creative idea to engage with the Stations of the Cross.  How easy it would be to adapt for a parish setting; different groups in the parish preparing and presenting each Station.

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The Chaplaincy Team

 

 

#LiveSimply in the High Peak

Last Saturday afternoon I set out for St Anne’s in Buxton and the stunning scenery along the A515.  I had been invited by Fr Gerry Murphy and the Parish Council who have registered for the CAFOD LiveSimply Award.  They were launching it this weekend and I was going to speak at both Masses.

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It was also an opportunity to meet up with Yvonne, CAFOD parish contact; we had first met back in 1993 when we were doing the Catholic Certificate in Religious Studies (CCRS).  She was also putting me up for the night!

 

The parish of St Anne’s first registered for the award in 2016 but it was put on hold due to the ill health and subsequent death of Fr Denis Higgins, who had been parish priest for over 30 years.  So now with their new parish priest they were ready to revisit their plans.

The Live Simply Award, originally introduced by CAFOD over 10 years ago, but reinvigorated by the letter of Pope Francis, Laudato Si, calls and challenges Catholic communities to live simply, to live in solidarity with the poor and to live sustainably with creation.  The origins go further back to Populorum Progressio, the 1967 Encyclical written by Pope Paul VI which stated:

“All Catholics are called to act…Catholics of richer lands must play their part to help development. They should be in the forefront of those who fight to build a better world, based on justice and equality.” 

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In 2002, the Catholic Bishops of England and Wales in their letter The Call of Creation stated; Individual actions may seem insignificant but together the small steps of many people can have an astonishing impact.”  This is truly reflected in the Award being a community achievement, people working together and supporting each other to achieve their Live Simply goals, because “The way we live and the choices we make affect the lives of others.”

And so as a community and as individuals, the parish of St Anne’s will work together to achieve the award through small, simple acts; continuing to support their local food bank and NightStop, working with CAFOD to fundraise and campaign. A big action is working towards being a Fair Trade parish.

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Not only does it give the community an opportunity to nurture their spiritual lives, the Live Simply award also offers opportunities to:

  • Strengthen friendships in the parish, school and communities
  • Offer support for taking practical steps
  • Play their part in big issues that affect them and
  • Develop and nourish connections within the wider community in Buxton, in the Diocese, with their global neighbours

So we wish them well on their journey and will encourage them in their efforts as they strive to ‘Live simply so others may simply live’.

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Our Lady & St Edwards parish in Thorneywood, Nottingham are also working towards the Award!

Are you interested?