COVID-19 Update

Featured

CAFOD Supporters taking action against Climate Change

Thank you for your patience while we take on board the changing situation with COVID-19 and the incredibly important role you play in support of our development and humanitarian work.

Thanks to your compassion and commitment, we can reach some of the poorest and marginalised communities around the world.

Volunteer offices closed (for now) – but there are still many ways to get involved

CAFOD is following the advice issued by the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England & Wales (CBCEW) as well as the UK government.

Following the government’s advice, we have taken the decision to cancel all face-to-face events and meetings and have closed all regional offices until at least June.

All the latest information about CAFOD’s response to COVID-19 will be on our Coronavirus Q & A and COVID-19: Information for volunteers pages.

Get in touch: All your usual local office contacts will still be available by mobile phone, email and via social media, so if you have any questions or thoughts do not hesitate to be in touch whatever your query:

Patrick Gardner        Email: pgardner@cafod.org.uk       Mobile: 07920 565 454         

Emma Nolan            Email: enolan@cafod.org.uk          Mobile: 07769 931 373

Online worship

With the Coronavirus pandemic causing masses to be cancelled, there are now lots of parishes and cathedrals offering virtual worship.

You can find out more information about local live-streamed services at The Diocese of Lancaster website.

We’ve also created a ‘Children’s Liturgy Live!’ session which will take place every Sunday to help families to worship in their own homes.

Online resources

If you’re looking for community, we have a CAFOD community group on Facebook. Please do join and invite others to do the same.

If you’re a parent, we have a large range of online education resources tailored specifically for primary and secondary ages, alongside worship and prayer content.

If you’re looking to learn more about CAFOD’s international work, we will be releasing a weekly timetable of online talks.

Feel-good stories

If you are a CAFOD volunteer and hear of a great story in your local parish – please let us know so we can share it on our social media channels and website.

It would be great if you would be able to email over a few sentences about what happened, along with a photo.

Prayer for the Coronavirus

Even though the volunteer centres are temporarily shut, we hope to be able to continue to offer opportunities to connect with the lives of our sisters and brothers around the world. 

Please keep an eye on our social media pages for the latest updates:

Find us on Facebook  and and Twitter at CAFOD in Lancaster.

In the meantime, we continue to pray for all those affected by the COVID-19 virus and the healthcare workers here in the UK and overseas, who are on the frontline of this crisis – and ask that you too join us in keeping them in our thoughts and prayers.

How can we put our faith to action after this pandemic?

You’re invited to join us to discuss the world we want to create after the pandemic – one where we respond to Pope Francis’s call and ensure plans for recovering from the crisis tackle poverty, inequality and the climate emergency.

We’ll gather online for a few hours to reflect on what changes we want to see after the coronavirus crisis in participatory sessions led by practical theological Sam Ewell and climate campaigners from around the world.

We’ll also look at how we can turn Pope Francis’s most recent call to action into a reality, learning about his new encyclical, Fratelli Tutti.

And we’ll hear from CAFOD’s Director of Advocacy Neil Thorns on the crucial global talks the UK is hosting next year and discuss the practical steps we need to take to rebuild our common home.

This event is open to everyone who is interested in campaigning with CAFOD – new and experienced campaigners alike. All are welcome!

Book your place

Remembering our loved ones on All Souls Day

This November we are holding a special online Memorial Mass on All Souls Day to pray for our supporters and loved ones who have died.

For most of us, 2020 has been one of the most challenging years we’ve ever experienced, and the loss of our loved ones during these difficult times may have seemed unbearably hard.

At a time like this it’s important for us to remain a virtual community and stand together in prayer to remember those who are no longer with us. With all the restrictions still affecting our churches, we are hosting a special online Memorial Mass on All Souls Day.

View the Prayers on the theme of remembrance here

At Mass we will present a Book of Remembrance which includes names of supporters who have sadly passed away during the year.  We would be honoured to remember your loved ones in this way, so please don’t hesitate to add the names of your loved ones that you would like us to pray for.

View and add to the Book of Remembrance here

We hope you can join us in our LIVE Memorial Mass on Monday 2 November at 6pm. Mass will be celebrated by CAFOD’s Chair of Trustees, Bishop John Arnold, with music, readings and prayers from CAFOD staff and supporters.

Watch the LIVE streaming here. If you’d like more information, please contact Roisin at remembrance@cafod.org.uk or call her on 020 7095 5348. 

Sowing seeds of goodness in our human family

Emergency support to Peruvians and Venezuelan migrants with food and medicine supplies during coronavirus.

In his new encyclical, Fratelli Tutti, Pope Francis writes of ‘dark clouds over a closed world’, evoking the uncertainty we have about the future. We are affected here in Lancaster Diocese. Millions more vulnerable families around the world are now struggling with food shortages and loss of income as a result of coronavirus.

Pope Francis reminds us that ‘despite these dark clouds’ there are ‘new paths of hope’. He tells us ‘God continues to sow abundant seeds of goodness in our human family.’

Sister Gertrude, Matron, hand washing

The generosity of CAFOD’s supporters is proof of these seeds of goodness. In Brazil, CAFOD’s partners are helping to distribute emergency food packages to families in urban areas unable to earn money and to assist farmers safely sell their produce.  In Sierra Leone, Sister Gertrude and her fellow doctors and nurses at the Handmaids Health Clinic and Maternity Unit now have personal protective equipment so they can treat patients safely. In Cambodia, migrant worker Pheng has participated in training in rice farming so that she can overcome travel restrictions and find work in her home country.

In Fratelli Tutti, Pope Francis looks at the world today through the lens of the well-known parable of the Good Samaritan. Pope Francis writes ‘the parable shows us how a community can be rebuilt by men and women who identify with the vulnerability of others, who reject the creation of a society of exclusion, and act instead as neighbours, lifting up and rehabilitating the fallen for the sake of the common good.’

CAFOD’s Family Fast Day this Harvest looks very different. Coronavirus restrictions mean our parishes in Lancaster Diocese cannot come together in all the normal ways to fundraise or gather for soup lunches or coffee mornings to support our brothers and sisters around the world.  But now, more than ever it is vital to come together as a community, even from a distance.

CAFOD has created a programme of free events between Thursday 8 and Sunday 11 October to enable people to gather online as a big Church community. Everyone is welcome and there is something for everyone. Please invite your friends and family. Let us recognise Christ in our abandoned or excluded brothers and sisters in the global South and respond to Pope Francis’ call to ‘care for the needs of every man and woman, young and old, with the same fraternal spirit of care and closeness that marked the Good Samaritan.’

Find out more at www.cafod.org.uk/fastday or click on the links below to register.

A Harvest like no other Programme

Join the Harvest Assembly for Schools. Watch live at 9.30am on Thursday 8 October.

Listen to a live update about CAFOD’s coronavirus response with International Programme Director, Maria Gonzales at 11am on Friday 9 October Book your place

Bishop Peter Brignall will celebrate Family Fast Day Mass, livestreamed from 6pm on Friday 9 October. Register to join our Mass

CAFOD’s new Global Family Food Event is at 12-1pm, Saturday 10 October. Have fun, eat some delicious food, and make a donation to transform the lives of people in poverty. Find out more

Get a team together or enter solo for the Harvest Like No Other Quiz at 7-8pm on Saturday 10 October. Register here

A special Harvest edition of CAFOD’s popular Children’s Liturgy Live is at 10am on Sunday 11 October, with a special guest from Sierra Leone. Register here.

Prayer and reflection:At 7pm on Sunday 11 October,Bishop John Arnold will reflect on Pope Francis’ catechesis, Healing the World, as well as the new encyclical, Fratelli Tutti Book your place