Share a soup lunch and show you care

Sharing a soup lunch is a wonderful way to live our faith in action. As we join together for this humble meal we express our solidarity and support for our global brothers and sisters devastated by war, climate change, poverty and famine.

Soup lunches provide an opportunity for prayer and reflection and it’s a chance to give practical help by raising money to support CAFOD’s amazing work.

A simple lunch for Family Fast Days

A simple lunch at St Augustine in Tunbridge wells

A simple soup lunch at St Augustine in Tunbridge Wells

We talked to Maria Chiara, a CAFOD volunteer from Italy, about a simple soup lunch that CAFOD staff and volunteers enjoyed at Romero house as part of Family Fast Day.

“We came together to share our simple meal and reflect on the lives of those living in extreme poverty. People brought different home-cooked soups such as lentil, carrot and sweet potato.

We began our lunch with prayer and reflection. We took the opportunity to remember the women who  started Family Fast Day and then CAFOD in the early ‘60s, and to think about the supporters and volunteers who have shown incredible commitment and generosity in helping others.

It was wonderful for me to be there and show solidarity with our global neighbours, who we thought of them as we sat down to eat.  I work for Caritas Cagliari and we have many projects to put our faith in action to help and empower those living in extreme poverty, so I was very excited to discover CAFOD fast days.”

Take a look at this video to see what we were up to!

A life saved with your help

You can have a simple soup lunch anywhere and at any time to show that you care!

You can have a simple soup lunch anywhere and at any time to show that you care!

Maria told us about an inspiring film they watched about Lilian. “The lunch was a chance to stand in solidarity with women like Lilian, who was very sick with HIV. The Family Fast Day film showed us how CAFOD had nursed her back to health. They gave her support and training to stay healthy and to rebuild her and her children’s life. It showed me how by eating simply and donating to CAFOD, lives can be saved”

How can I organise a simple soup lunch?

With November and the cold weather approaching why not hold your own Family fast day soup lunch? In fact, any time is a good time to make or buy soup and share a simple meal to show spiritual and practical solidarity for our global brothers and sisters.

CAFOD has loads of great information and resources to help you Plan a soup lunch in your parish Everything from choosing a venue, posters and to promoting the lunch in your parish newsletters. There’s even a recipe for a delicious pasta and bean soup!

Invitation to Soup Lunch at Romero House on October 5th, 2018.

This Friday, October 5th, we will be hosting a Soup Lunch with our staff and volunteers at Romero House. We would love to have you and your friends and family to join us at 1:00pm on this day to share in celebration, prayer and donation. The address of Romero House is: 55 Westminster Bridge Rd, South Bank, London SE1 7JB.

Why have a soup lunch?

This is Longora and her family in Northern Uganda

This is Longora and her family in Northern Uganda

Having a soup lunch with your friends and family is a great way of raising awareness and of holding a collection for our mission. By eating simply – and perhaps by giving up a meal, or just having a bowl of soup – and by donating to CAFOD, lives can be saved. This benefits people like Longora from Uganda and her family, who used to have no access to drinkable water, but can now lead healthier lives. Thanks to donations from people like you in the past, CAFOD was able to repair the well in her village and train local people in how to maintain it, so they can fix it if it breaks again. Now Longora and her neighbours have a reliable supply of clean, safe drinking water.

At Family Fast Day we seek to make changes like this possible.

If you cannot make it on Friday, but still are interested and want to participate in a Harvest Family Fast Day soup lunch, don’t worry, it’s not too late! You can organise a soup lunch in your parish or with your friends after Fast Day as well!

Plan a soup lunch in your parish

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From Zimbabwe to Battersea via a vegetable garden

Jed Murphy is a CAFOD volunteer in the Southwark Diocese. Jed went to speak at mass for Lent Family Fast Day last weekend at the Parish of the Sacred Heart Church in Battersea. Here, he writes about his message and experience. 

Sacred Heart Parish is a wonderfully vibrant parish located in the heart of Battersea.   It was founded in 1875 and is in the care of the Salesians of Don Bosco.

Your donations made a difference

Parish of the Sacred Heart Church, Battersea (Photo: CAFOD)

Parish of the Sacred Heart Church, Battersea (Photo: CAFOD)

This year’s Fast Day talk centred on Marian and her two sons, Tawanda & Svondo, who live in Zimbabwe.  When Tawanda was growing up, Marian didn’t have enough food to give him. It was heartbreaking to see.   When Tawanda was a teenager, Marian had another son, Svondo. He was brought up on fresh vegetables, beans and peanut butter. Now seven years old, Svondo is growing healthy and strong. He plays with his friends. He’s happy.

And the difference? Your donations to CAFOD helped to give Marian some seeds.   And she did the rest.  She worked hard month after month to grow a vegetable garden until it flourished and provided food for her family.

Discover Marian’s story in a video

No child should have to go hungry

But the message this Lent is that no child should have to go hungry.

And this Lent our donations can make double the impact:  for every pound you donate to CAFOD, the UK Government will also donate a pound.

At no extra cost, twice the number of lives can be transformed. Twice the number of children can have the opportunity to grow up healthy and strong.

This Friday go without a meal and give to CAFOD

This Friday I hope you can take part in Family Fast Day by going without a meal, or having a simple meal and giving generously to CAFOD.

The magnificent Sacred Heart Church (Photo: CAFOD)

The magnificent Sacred Heart Church (Photo: CAFOD)

During Mass, Father reminded us all that this weekend is the start of our Lentern journey towards Easter.  Even the weather seemed to point to the first few bright days of Spring on the way.

Let’s use this Lent to remember our less fortunate brother & sisters around the world.  

I wanted to say a very big thank-you to Fr Gerry O’Shaughnessy, Fr. Peter Pagac and Deacon Michael Kennedy and all the parishioners who made me feel so welcome this weekend.

As Fr O’Shaughnessy said this morning: ‘Happy Lent’.

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Photo: CAFOD