Says Lyn: Lent Fast Day is fast approaching and preparations in our parish are now in full swing.
As usual, we’ll be putting up a display on the porch noticeboard and this time the theme will be fish…….and lots of eye-catching brightly-decorated fish spring to mind.
Our display, which will remain in place until the following Sunday, will coincide for Serge, our parish rep, to give his talk on Sunday 5th March.
We staple the CAFOD envelopes to the weekly newsletter which is handed out by our welcomers, together with the parish mass book. We find this solves the problem of folk forgetting to take an envelope when they leave after Mass. It also means everyone has the envelope in front of them when Serge is delivering his talk.
We make a point of using the CAFOD prayers of intercession throughout Lent as this helps to keep us focused on the needs of our brothers and sisters around the world. The newsletter includes a brief announcement reminding everyone that Fast Day is coming and it urges them to use Gift Aid if possible thereby increasing their gift.
After the 10.30.am Mass, which is our main Sunday service, we usually have refreshments in the hall. This gives parishioners a chance to chat and catch up on all the news.
On 5th March we’ll be having the usual refreshments as well as showing the video of Nkandu Chikonde which is available on the CAFOD website .
The youngsters haven’t been forgotten either.
We’re challenging them to become involved in the Fast Day efforts. Each child has been given a CAFOD money box and we’re asking them to do chores at home to earn money to put in the box.
Obviously we want them to raise whatever money they can and we believe it will be good for them to feel they’re contributing. By doing chores they can see that the money they raise is a direct result of their own efforts.
As we feel our efforts shouldn’t just be restricted to a collection on Fast Day, we’re also planning a Lenten fund-raising frugal lunch. The occasion will also raise awareness of the challenges many people face in trying to find enough food to feed their families.
Finally, we hope to have a Day of Prayer for CAFOD which will include Stations of the Cross.
Further details about this will be announced shortly.