LEARNING TO LIVE SIMPLY IN EWELL

IMG_2295

It all began when a small group of St. Clement’s parishioners met to study the papal encyclical Laudato Si.  We were inspired by the writings of Pope Francis, who was himself inspired by the life of his namesake, St. Francis of Assisi.

We reflected on the messages in Laudato Si and considered how we as a community could respond practically to protect our world, act with tenderness to each other and reach out to those in our community in need. We were keen to bring together young and old and encourage those who do not always get involved in the day to day life of the parish.

Our answer was to become a Live Simply parish and to apply to CAFOD for their Live Simply award.    

Capture 1

With the backing of our Parish Priest, Fr. Graham Bamford, and the parish we launched the initiative in May 2017 and were registered by CAFOD as a participating parish on 10th July 2017.

Since then we have

  • made a Live Simply banner and a special notice board
20170511_203747
  • built a vegetable garden, which has been a great success, despite our very dry summer this year, producing good organic vegetables for sale. The proceeds from the sales went to our Connect 2 Cambodia appeal
Capture
  • made sure that all coffee and tea served at St. Clement’s is Fairtrade. We have purchased recyclable cups and started a compost bin
  • set up a walking club to encourage spending time together and appreciating our surroundings
  • held a walk to church weekend encouraging car sharing for those who couldn’t walk
  • held a “Live Simply” reflection during Lent, leading the Stations of the Cross
  • produced a Parish Christmas card, as an alternative to individual cards
  • run a parish social in aid of Epsom and Ewell Food Bank, raising £620
  • raised awareness about refugees and migrants by taking part in CAFOD’s Share the Journey.
garden produceIMG_1604

We are now hoping to become the third parish in the Diocese to receive CAFOD’s Live Simply award and we shall be submitting our evidence very soon.

We hope the experience of working towards the award will continue as a positive opportunity for everyone in the parish, young and old, to come together with one goal: to make God known by the way we, as a community, act.

Story: John Farrell, Jonathan Inns and Charlotte Gregory    Picture:  Charlotte Gregory

CAFOD would like to wish Fr Graham, John Farrell, Jonathan Inns, Charlotte Gregory and all the St Clements Parishioners luck in their forthcoming assessment and to thank them for all their hard work in striving to achieve this award.

CAFOD is proud to support ‘The Justice and Peace Assembly 2019 Human Trafficking: Slavery On Our Doorstep’

capture 1

Last Saturday around 160 people from the Diocese attended the Justice and Peace Assembly at the St Philip Howard Centre (DABCEC) on the theme of “Human Trafficking: Slavery on our Doorstep.”

A very interesting talk was given by Richard Lancashire from Sussex Police about ‘What is Modern day Slavery which is often hidden from plain view. It could be happening to people working as car washers, in care homes, cleaning hospitals etc. He emphasised that although some of them may think they were better off in this country, it was unacceptable practice to exploit them for miserable wages. People were encouraged to contact the Police and the Modern Slavery Helpline – if they suspected exploitation.

Mick Duthie, Deputy Director of Santa Marta Group spoke about ‘The Church and Law Enforcement Combating Modern Slavery’ and the great work being done by the Catholic religious sisters in tackling the issue to overcome modern day slavery in conjunction with the police. Pope Francis instigated the Santa Marta Group to bring the Church and law enforcement agencies together.

Sr. Pat Mulhall (Brigidine) who works at Bakhita House in London spoke movingly about the work of supporting women victims who have been trafficked. Deacon Roger Stone who was the Apostleship of the Sea Port Chaplain for Southampton highlighted the challenging problems of helping victims of human trafficking but of the necessity for the Church to play a key role in supporting them.

John Paul de Quay (Ecological Conversion Group/Social Action Commission) ran some thought provoking workshops challenging us to look at every aspect of our lives and how it effects others and the earth.  Although the problems that the world faces may seem insurmountable and our efforts insignificant; every little bit helps – he reminded as to do all things well – even  recycling!

 

capture

There were many stalls representing a wide variety of charities and it was clear to see how each one is meeting a need in our society today.  Furthermore, there was a fairtrade stall with a huge array of fairtrade goods to buy. I enjoyed chatting to people about CAFOD and was very impressed to see so many of our CAFOD parish volunteers at ‘The Assembly.’ 

Should you wish to find out more about volunteering for CAFOD please visit our website.

https://cafod.org.uk/Volunteer/Volunteer-with-us

CAFOD’s Young Leadership Training Day

st peters

Young Leaders 2018-2019

At CAFOD we recognise that young people can make a huge difference, which is why we want to equip senior students to be Young Leaders  in their local and global communities. CAFOD’s Young Leadership Programme is designed for Sixth Formers and provides them with training to develop leadership skills.

st peters

On Wednesday 16 January, St Peter’s Catholic School in Guildford kindly hosted CAFOD’s second training day for  Young Leaders in their amazing purpose-built St Cecilia’s Hall. The day was ably led by CAFOD’s Sarah Burrows, Young Leadership Coordinator for Youth. There were over sixty Sixth Former attendees from schools across Arundel and Brighton and Portsmouth including: St Peter’s Guildford, Salesian College Chertsey, Cardinal Newman School Hove, Christ the King Isle of Wight, Salesian College Farnborough, St Anne’s Southampton, St Joseph College Reading, Oaklands College Waterlooville, and Farnborough Hill School.

capture 2

The day involved prayer, reflection, icebreakers and feedback on how the students had undertaken leadership projects last term. I was amazed at how brilliantly these young people engaged with one another and enthusiastically shared what they had done previously; such as making videos to show awareness of CAFOD, leading CAFOD assemblies to primary school pupils, organising CAFOD stalls, mufty days, cake sales etc.

capture 3

During the day they also explored Lent family fast day.   Training was given on CAFOD values, motivating listeners to become engaged in CAFOD projects, hearing about how young leaders work in Colombia and learning how to speak up for justice and peace. In the afternoon they were asked to plan a school fund raising event and present their ideas to a critical ‘Dragon’s Den’ panel who made them justify their decisions! One group even came up with the idea of the Sixth Formers raising money through giving up their time to help out in younger classes.

capture cn

My thanks to Sarah Burrows for leading the day, Kevin Mendes and St Peter’s Students and staff for hosting the event, Jo Lewry for her assistance, staff and chaplains from the schools who supported the day; but most of all, to the Young Leaders 2018-2019. You are an inspiration!

There certainly is HOPE for the future when you see the commitment, compassion, energy, drive and creativity of these young people empowered to make a difference. We look forward to seeing you all again for the final day in May.