Share the Journey walk around Greenham Common

The walk starting from Greenham Common control tower .

The walk starting from Greenham Common control tower .

Many thanks to Martha Vickers our parish volunteer at St Francis de Sales parish for organising a Share the Journey walk around Greenham Common on Saturday. Also thank you to the young people from St Cassian’s retreat centre and to parishioners from St Francis de Sales, St Joseph, St George’s C of E, St John C of E, and the Quakers who walked to show solidarity with millions of people forced to free their homes because of war, persecution, natural disaster and poverty. You walked a total of 74 miles which is a fantastic effort so thank you all so much!

Group from St Cassians

Group from St Cassians

During this refugee week we are following the Pope’s call to show our concern for refugees and migrants so do come and join one of our Share the Journey walks or organise one in your own parish . We are hoping that by walking we will send a message to world leaders who are meeting in September to come to an agreement on refugees and migrants which respects human dignity, protects the vulnerable, supports host countries, keep families together and tackles the reason for migration.

On the walk

On the walk

Here is a list of the Share the Journey walks coming up in the next few weeks:-

23rd June Share the journey walk St Michael & All Angels Leigh Park PO9  5BD 10am at the church

23rd June Share the Journey walk St Edmund Campion Maidenhead meet at Braywick Park car park at 11am

30th June Share the Journey walk Corpus Christi Church Bournemouth  BH5 2BX meet at 10:30am at the church after 10am mass

1st July Share the Journey walk from St Edward the Confessor Church Chandler’s Ford SO53 2DU to Hiltingbury Lake and back. At the church at 10am after 9am mass.

8th July  Share the Journey walk around Southampton Common meet at Cowherds Pub SO15 7NN 3pm

By  Alex Atandi our new CAFOD Portsmouth Office Volunteer.

Joy Filled Mass of Thanksgiving for Volunteers in the South East Region

Afternoon tea after the mass

Afternoon tea after the mass

Many thanks to all those who came to our annual Mass of Thanksgiving for Volunteers on Saturday 16th June at Our Lady Help of Christians Church Farnborough . It was lovely mass in which we thanked God for all our CAFOD volunteers in the South East region which includes Arundel and Brighton, Brentwood, East Anglia, Portsmouth, Southwark and Westminster dioceses.

Thank you so much to Fr Chris for hosting the mass and to Helen Priestley our parish volunteer at Our Lady Help of Christians for providing a fantastic afternoon tea afterwards. I would also like to thank Fr Marco who presided at the mass and who is the chaplain at the Salesian school in Chertsey and very involved in our CAFOD Youth Leadership programme at the school.

Tania talking about our work in Latin America

Tania talking about our work in Latin America

Tania Dalton, who is the communications officer for Latin America came and spoke very movingly about our work in Latin America. She told us how CAFOD supports the local radio which is a life line for people living in rural communities as it gives them information about weather, farming techniques and  supports them in their struggle for human rights.

She then spoke about an inspirational priest Fr Assis from Cape Verde, a Spiritan missionary priest,  who works in the favelas with the poor in Brazil.  The Spiritan fathers founded our partner MDF (Movement for the Defence of Favela Residents). We fund work carried out by MDF to lobby local authorities in Sao Paulo for decent living conditions in the favelas, such as sewerage, electricity, decent housing, title deeds.  It’s one of the partners that features in C2 Brazil. Fr Assis told Tania about his work

“For me, Church is people joining together for a common purpose. People coming together who want to make a change, who want to transform their neighbourhood. This is what Jesus Christ was doing. He didn’t build churches; he brought people together.”

“This is my vision of church: trembling, not indifferent, in the face of injustice.  This is what I believe in. We have to work for change in society. We don’t always manage it, but it means that we are friends of the poor and enemies of poverty.”

Many thanks to Tania for her inspirational talk.

Enjoying the afternoon tea

Enjoying the afternoon tea

Finally thank you to Martin Brown our CPC in Arundel and Brighton for organising the music for the mass and to Jane Crone CPC for East Anglia, Chris Driscoll CPC for Brentwood and Paul Whittle CPM for SE region for travelling such long distances to join us for the mass.

Enjoying the afternoon tea

Enjoying the afternoon tea

 

Corpus Christi Wokingham Share the Journey Walks

Starting the walk with prayer

Starting the walk with prayer

Thank you so much to Cathy Hill our parish volunteer at Corpus Christi Wokingham and the parishioners for getting involved in Share the Journey walks. Cathy organised a walk last Sunday.

Cathy told us “Forty-two parishioners (including 6 children) from Corpus Christi shared the Journey in the sunshine last Sunday starting inside church and pausing to hear more migrant stories as they walked around a nearby playing field. Many exchanged their own migrant journey memories and even refugee experiences and also those of people they knew from years passed. They reflected on how these differed from those happening around the world today. The distance travelled by the group was quite short at 25 miles but our conversations took us further. We finished the journey inside our parish rooms and enjoyed sharing refreshments.”

Walking

Walking

Also eight members of the parish Union of Catholic Mothers group walked a total of 10 miles in woodland one pleasant evening in May reflecting on the Share the Journey stories and prayers on their way. They finished off the evening with a pub meal!

UCM woodland walk

UCM woodland walk

One of the parishioners and a UCM member, Patty Prescott, with her sister walked part of the Camino from Sarria to Santiago de Compestela, 72 miles over 6 days, during May. They were able to share their journey comparing their chosen physical and spiritual one through the green and pleasant land of Galicia with those forced to flee their homes. “Although foot sore and tired each evening, we began each day with fresh vigour – related to this strong sense of journey that we both felt. We particularly gave thanks for our blessings, we had chosen this journey and not been forced to make it to save our lives.” Their journey’s end at Santiago cathedral was reached with amazement and some relief.

Patty walking the Camino

Patty walking the Camino

Many thanks to everyone who took part in a walk . Details of other Share the journey walks in the Portsmouth diocese are here or why not organise your own parish walk.