In remembrance and celebration – Brentwood Diocese CAFOD Memorial Mass 2017

During November, the month of remembrance, we take time to pray for those who have died and give thanks for loved ones who have made a deep and lasting impression on our lives. 

Over the years, CAFOD has been blessed to work alongside the kindest and most committed friends any charity could hope for. The insight, faith and strength of our founders and early supporters still shape our values and way of working today.

But one of the saddest aspects of growing older, as individuals and as an organisation, is that some of our closest friends have passed away in recent months and years. In our own diocese, we have lost a number of friends who have played an inspirational and important role in our work.

Some may be familiar names to many of us, such as inspirational parish priests, or parish volunteers who’ve organised events and rallied local support for CAFOD campaigns. Many more will be men and women who’ve gone about their busy lives but also quietly found time to offer love, practical support and prayers to the world’s poorest and most vulnerable communities. Ordinary men and women who have made an extraordinary difference to people’s lives.

So in celebration of our inspiring friends, and as a small token of our appreciation for their years of kindness and dedication, CAFOD Brentwood will be holding its fourth Memorial Mass at Brentwood Cathedral on Thursday November 9 at 9.15am. We are honoured and indeed fortunate to have Bishop Alan Williams as the principal celebrant at the Mass.

 

All are welcome to join us, whether to remember fellow CAFOD supporters or members of your own family, friends and community who’ve passed away. At our Memorial Mass, you can take precious time to remember your loved ones, knowing that you’re among friends.

A Book of Remembrance will be presented and blessed by the celebrant at each Mass. If you would like to add a name to this list you would be very welcome; whether or not you can attend the service itself. Please get in touch with our volunteer centre at brentwood@cafod.org.uk or by calling 01277 218730 if you’d like to know more.

Refreshments will be provided after the service, so we hope you’ll be able to stay on for a while to speak with other local CAFOD supporters and staff. It would be wonderful to see you at such a special event.

Biggest Catholic Youth event set to light a ‘flame’ in Wembley

On 11 March, up to 10,000 Catholics will attend Flame 2017, a youth event at Weflame-poster-1-734x1024mbley arena, and share stories of faith and hope from across the world.

Young Catholics from across the country will come together for the biggest event of its kind in the UK. The theme of the day is ’10,000 reasons to hope’ based on the song by Grammy-award winning singer-songwriter Matt Redman, who will be performing at the event.

Four young leaders from Brentwood diocese, who are volunteering with aid agency CAFOD, will be attending the event and running lunchtime workshops around the themes of refugees and climate change.

During the event, CAFOD is aiming to collect 10,000 messages of hope to send to refugees around the world. This is part of a larger campaign by the charity, who have so far received over 25,000 messages from communities across England and Wales.

CAFOD youth volunteers, Leah Fox, 19, and Ryan Wilkinson, 18, will be speaking on the day about their experiences of meeting refugees in Lebanon, in hopes of inspiring the young people to act.

“I am so excited to speak at Wembley,” said Ryan, who is currently volunteering at Savio House, the Salesian retreat centre in Sheffield. “From my own personal experience, sharing messages of hope makes a massive difference and shows refugees that they are not alone.”

 

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CAFOD Young Leaders at FLAME 2015

“During these turbulent times, it is great that so many young people will be coming together for one cause,” added Leah, who is currently training to be a primary school teacher. “I hope that by sharing my story, I will encourage young people to take further action in solidarity with refugees.”

The event, organised by the Catholic Youth Ministry Federation, will also include talks by the Archbishop of Westminster Cardinal Nichols Myanmar’s first Cardinal Charles Bo, and Matt Redman.

Tickets are still available for the event which will take place on 11 March at the SSE arena in Wembley. Doors will open at 10am with the event expected to finish at 5:30pm.

Find out more at: cafod.org.uk/flame

The cry of the earth and the cry of the poor: sustainable livelihoods in Zambia

Sister Yvonne Mwalula Mwila, our partner from the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary, is helping communities in Zambia to transform their lives. We are pleased to announce Sister Yvonne will be speaking in Walthamstow and other regional events in England and Wales ahead of Lent Fast Day.

Sister Yvonne writes: “I am a Religious Sister in the Congregation of the Sisters of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary which I entered in 1997. _mgl9326

The Founder of our Congregation asked us to serve the poor of the poorest in our society. “To go where no one wants to go and do what nobody wants to do. Because for you dear sisters there are only two things that matters, Jesus Christ and the poor, the moment you forget this, you should cease to exist” we do try to accomplish this calling in our Programme in Mbala”.

In the light of the HIV and AIDS pandemic, the Sacred Heart Sisters committed themselves to respond to urgent needs. It was with this situation in mind, that the Sisters established the Households In Distress (HID) Programme in 1991 which contributes to the reduction of the impact of HIV and AIDS on the infected and most affected families in communities through quality care and support and livelihoods initiatives.

The HID Programme carries out its various interventions in Mbala district through the provision of information, education and commuication; home based care; livelihoods/village orphan support groups and orphans and education for  vulnerable children.

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Sister Yvonne is also working alongside farmers to help them grow drought-resistant crops, so they can stand up again on their own two feet. The communities she supports are gradually lifting themselves out of poverty and sending their children to school. Our neighbours are also protecting the planet by installing solar panels on their homes.

 

Sr Yvonne will be speaking about our work at Our Lady & St George parish hall in Walthamstow on Wednesday 22 February at 7.30pm. The full address is Our Lady & St George Catholic Parish, Shernhall Street, Walthamstow, E17 9HU. The talk will be preceded by an opportunity to participate in a beautiful Lampedusa Cross lent-2017-photo‘pilgrimage’ and liturgy in the church. ALL ARE WELCOME. If you would like to attend Sr Yvonne’s talk, please register or contact us at brentwood@cafod.org.uk or call 01277 218730

If you are unable to join us for her talk in Walthamstow, Sr Yvonne will be talking online
the following day. Join us online on Thursday, 23 February from 1pm to 2pm to listen to Sr Yvonne’s talk.