Jed Murphy is a CAFOD volunteer in the Southwark Diocese. Jed is one of hundreds of CAFOD volunteers that (normally) speak at Masses about how CAFOD is making a difference overseas. Today he is sharing his thoughts on this Lent Fast Day.
Lent began on 17 February. Yet it feels like Christmas has only just ended. The pandemic has really changed our perception of time.
I was reflecting that last year’s Lent Fast Day’s was one of the last ‘normal’ things I did before the pandemic. And it’s incredible to think it was almost a year ago.
I visited St Benet’s Church and St John Fisher School in Abbey Wood, London. It was early March, just before lockdown started, but when social distancing measures were starting to emerge. One of those early measures was skipping the Sign of Peace at Mass. I remember that it felt so strange.
And what a year it’s been since then. It feels as if time has stood still. Many of us will have been impacted by Covid. Lost loved ones. Lost jobs. Felt isolated. Been ill.
It’s probably the first time that, in the UK, we’ve been touched by a global disaster – the kind of thing we normally only ever see on the news. So we must remember that, around the world, people are dealing with Covid on top of extreme poverty. For example, 1 in 3 people still don’t have access to safe drinking water. People like Ibrahim, who is 50-years-old and lives in northern Ethiopia. It used to take him 24 hours to get a drink of water. Let that sink in. A day’s walk. To get water. But thanks to CAFOD a solar-powered water pump installed near his home has transformed Ibrahim’s life.
So how can we help, this Lent?
Well, because of lockdown, CAFOD Fast Day is going to be a little different this year. We’re all asked to join in The Walk for Water. Walk for Water is the only Lent challenge you need: 10,000 steps a day (or less) – done your way. Every day. For 40 days (or the rest of Lent). Go the distance this Lent and help to end water poverty.
How to join in ?
- Sign-up to set-up your JustGiving page.
- Let others know about the event.
- Choose a route. We’re suggesting five miles, or 10,000 steps, but any distance will work!
- Make sure you take plenty of photos on the event and share them using #walkforwater and @CAFOD
What else can you do?
1- Follow CAFOD’s online conferences to raise your awareness
The Challenge of Water in South Sudan, Tue 2 Mar, 11am Join us for a transformational talk about the water crisis and our inspiring work in South Sudan. Ibrahim Njuguna CAFOD Country representative in South Sudan and Thomas Delamere CAFOD Programme office in South Sudan will be reporting on the situation in the region.
Stations of the Cross: Every Friday throughout Lent at 11am This Lent, we will walk through the Stations of the Cross online in a prayerful journey of transformation in solidarity with people living in poverty around the world.
See our online talks page for more information.
2 – Donate online
CAFOD is offering online and text message giving this year. Visit CAFOD’s website for more information