Today is Harvest Fast Day and across the country families, individuals, parishes and schools will be standing in solidarity with people such as Edelmira (below) and her family in her community in El Salvador which is the focus of this year’s Fast Day appeal.
El Salvador was of course also the home of Blessed Oscar Romero, who is still held with deep reverence by Salvadoreans and many millions of others across the world. The prayer attributed to Oscar Romero, ‘A step along the way’ reminds us of the importance to allow space for God’s grace in our work and in our lives:
We provide yeast that produces effects far beyond our capabilities.
it is a beginning, a step along the way, an opportunity for the Lord’s grace to enter and do the rest.
We may never see the end results, but we are workers, not master builders, ministers, not messiahs.
Grace and abundance are two themes closely connected to CAFOD’s approach to Harvest. Drawing on the story of the wedding at Cana, CAFOD’s theological adviser, Fr Augusto Zampini Davies describes how an appreciation of the significance of harvest is enriched by an understanding of ideas of grace and abundance:
“In ancient biblical times, harvest was a feast connected with God’s abundant gift. As citizens of our modern world, detached from actual food production, we can misinterpret the importance of those feasts. But we are still familiar with wedding feasts. The celebration of a good harvest, whose first products were offered to God, could be compared to a good wedding feast, in which wine, food and gifts are offered to the invitees. In both celebrations, when related to God, the centrality is abundance: of fruits, love and joy, an abundance that transforms all who partake in the feast, bolstering their capacity to live life to the full”.
So let us make room once more for God’s grace this Harvest, and as we fast and enjoy our simple soup lunches, remember that in our work for CAFOD we are sowing the seeds for the great Harvest that is to come.
Thank you to all our volunteers for all you have done and are doing this Harvest Fast Day.