Liverpool’s Thanksgiving Event for Volunteers – 10th June

On Saturday 10 June, CAFOD volunteers from the Archdiocese of Liverpool came together to celebrate their achievements in an afternoon full of events, cake and friendship.

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One of the delicious cakes on offer

The afternoon began with tea and cake, made by the staff and volunteers, and we were asked to discuss our highlights of volunteering for CAFOD with the person next to us.

18e 10.6.17 CAFOD Volunteers at St Bartholomews Rainhill

We heard from volunteers from across the diocese, some of whom were schools’ volunteers and parish volunteers from their local CAFOD groups.  There was such a huge mix of activities that people take part in for CAFOD: from beetle drives to giving talks in schools, from selling fair trade goods to holding collections after Mass… It is inspiring to see such variety and we are grateful for it all!

04e 10.6.17 CAFOD Volunteers at St Bartholomews Rainhill

Every Christmas, Elizabeth takes part in the Liverpool Fun Run for CAFOD in fancy dress… Past costumes include a ‘Christmas pudding’ and last year, Jesus, who gave out books to the children who were attending the run!

23e 10.6.17 CAFOD Volunteers at St Bartholomews Rainhill

Justine is CAFOD Liverpool’s Education Volunteer Co-ordinator who goes into local schools to spread the word of CAFOD and the various campaigns we run. She is always looking to make the experience for schools and volunteers the best it can be, sharing her thoughtful reflections on poverty and justice, and inspiring volunteers and children and young people with her work.

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Bernie (left) and Justine (Right)

After we shared our highlights, Weronika from CAFOD’s Latin America team gave us a talk about the Connect2 programme and specifically Connect2 Peru.  It was great to see the hand of friendship that local parishes are extending through this programme and the rewards that both sides see from being involved.

19e 10.6.17 CAFOD Volunteers at St Bartholomews Rainhill

Weronika

We had a wonderful afternoon together and it was great to be able to celebrate our volunteers in the Liverpool diocese and share and inspire us all with the brilliant stories!

Thank you!

You Are Invited To Our Volunteers’ Thank You Celebration!

We would like to invite you to join us on Saturday 10th June 2017 for a Special Volunteer Thank You Celebration as part of volunteers’ week.

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We will be meeting at St Batholomew’s Parish Centre in Rainhill (L35 6NY).

Doors open at 2pm for a 2.30pm start, and we expect to finish at around 5pm, after which there is the option of attending the 5.15pm Vigil Mass.

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There will be an opportunity to look back over the past year, and an input from Weronika Ozerianska from CAFOD’s Latin America team who is newly back from visiting the Connect2 Peru communities!

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Join us so we can express our gratitude for your hard work, and hear how your support is helping our brothers and sisters in the world’s poorest countries!

Please RSVP to Colette and Ged at CAFOD Liverpool on 0151 228 4028 or liverpool@cafod.org.uk

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Ged Edwards’ Visit to St Bartholomew’s Primary School

On Wednesday 3rd May, Ged visited St Batholomew’s Catholic Primary school and talked to the children in the Infant assembly about the work of CAFOD and his forthcoming visit to the Philippines next month.

 

He was presented with a cheque for the magnificent sum of £1526.00 which is the amount our school raised during Lent.  Ged intends to return to school next half term to tell us all about his trip and work in the Philippines.

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Ged said “It was lovely to meet the wonderful staff team and the children and see something of the fantastic work St Bartholomew’s does with CAFOD’s materials throughout the year and its wonderful support for CAFOD. The huge cheque is merely a sign of this and the way that all are included in the School family, especially those who most need it here and overseas.”

Meet Our Volunteers – Eamon and Maeve O’Neill

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Eamon and Maeve lead the 17-strong CAFOD Group in St Bartholomew’s established when Vin McMullen, CAFOD’s first Regional Organiser inspired them in 1993.  The Group continues in the sure knowledge that their work is in solidarity with one another, the parish at large, clergy and CAFOD Liverpool Volunteer Centre as well as with our sisters and brothers overseas.

In this spirit they have enabled the parish to remain aware of our work and in response to donate £264,098 to date, supporting Fast Days, emergencies, Connect2 and hold two main community events, a sponsored walk and Coffee Evening for the parish and beyond into Rainhill.  Eamon is a speaker at Mass in St Bartholomew’s and in other settings on request, and he takes donations from the parish each week to the CAFOD Shop in Liverpool.

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Members of St Bartholomew’s CAFOD group

Maeve was also a Diocesan Team member and adviser and an Education Volunteer for several years.  She is a Traidcraft representative and the Group runs a weekly Fairtrade stall at Masses, and she supplies other groups and events in the area during the year.

Both have also been part of the Group’s longstanding efforts to promote CAFOD’s campaigns through lobbying for many years as well as its prayer life (e.g. Lampedusa Cross: Holy Week 2017).

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Maeve and members of her group

 

Lampedusa Cross Walk of Witness

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Archbishop Malcolm McMahon Blessing the Cross

50 Rainhill residents led by the St Bartholomew’s CAFOD Group led a Walk of Witness for Good Friday in Rainhill.  The Walk was an ecumenical event with parishioners from St Ann’s CE Church and St James’ Methodist Church walking in solidarity.  The Group had asked to use the Liverpool Lampedusa Cross for the walk which was also used at other times during Holy Week at St Bartholomew’s.

Lampedusa Cross at St Teresa's Norris Green

The Lampedusa Cross at  St Teresa’s in Norris Green

This cross was made from pieces of a boat wrecked off the coast of the Italian island of Lampedusa. The first Lampedusa cross was made from a boat on which 311 Eritrean and Somali refugees were drowned making their way from Libya to Europe. The community on the island helped save the lives of 155 others.

In Lampedusa’s church, Francesco Tuccio, the island’s carpenter, met some of the survivors who were Eritrean Christians. Moved by their situation, he used his skills to make each of them a cross from the wreckage as both a reflection of their salvation from the sea andalso as a powerful symbol of hope for their future. A similar cross was made for Pope Francis, who carried it at a memorial service for those who had perished.

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The Lampedusa Cross at St Oswalds in Warrington

In 2016, Mr Tuccio made the Liverpool Lampedusa Cross. It bears witness to the dangerous journeys and many uncertainties migrants and refugees face today. It reminds us of the power of our own acts of love, mercy and hope.

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The Lampedusa Cross at the Walking Day Event in Warrington. 

The Lampedusa Cross Service is a simple and powerful liturgy which can be used by anyone.  At the end, people are invited to respond by writing their own messages of hope to refugees which are sent to CAFOD and distributed to refugees around the world.  Here’s a picture of the Archbishop Malcolm blessing the Cross and his own Message of Hope.  And the messages do reach refugees, as you can see here through the work of our partner Caritas Hellas on the island of Lesbos in Greece.

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The Lampedusa Cross Logo

The Cross is available to use for parishes and communities in the Archdiocese and there are beautiful resources to accompany it and to engage people in consideration of the plight of migrants and Jesus’ call to love our neighbours.  If you are interested in using the Cross for a small or large group of people, please call Ged or Colette on 0151 228 4028 or email liverpool@cafod.org.uk.