|The work of hope|
On Saturday 7 November, Nottingham Diocese took its first steps in Caritas. Over eighty people gathered by Zoom for Together we are Caritas.
People found the opportunity to meet, listen, share, make plans and make friends ‘inspiring’, ‘encouraging’ and ‘uplifting’. With your help Caritas will continue to be all of those things.
More important still, through Caritas we will reach out with love to the poorest and most vulnerable in our communities and the wider world – because Caritas means, simply, love
If you weren’t there on 7 November, this edition of Grapevine gives you a flavour of what happened – and how you can be part of it. And if you were there, you can watch Bishop Patrick and Amy Daughton’s keynote talks again.
Jesus says ‘I have appointed you to bear fruit, fruit that will last’. When I’ve pulled together the inspiring ideas which people shared in breakout rooms, I’m sure you will agree it’s going to be a bumper harvest.
Paul (Programme Leader for Social Action)
In this issue
– Accompanying missionary disciples, healing the world:
our next steps for Caritas
– Watch the inspirational talks by Bishop Patrick and Amy Daughton
– Journey in Hope: underpinning Caritas with prayer and reflection
– Care for Earth, our common home: forthcoming events
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Accompanying missionary disciples, healing the world
In 2021 the Diocese of Nottingham will join Caritas, the Church’s worldwide ministry of charity. Our Caritas will help the diocese grow into a community of missionary disciples, reaching out to a world in need.
Since publishing Caritas is Coming, nearly 60 people joined in clarifying a vision and developing practical proposals. As a result, we then published this new collection of signposts and inspirations for Caritas.
It explores how we can help each other grow in our vocation as God’s people, and enable our parishes to heal a wounded world.
Take a look, and let us know how you think Caritas can support you in the adventure of missionary discipleship.
At the heart of the world, and always at its service’
Bishop Patrick McKinney gave the opening keynote talk. He set out his hope for Caritas: that it would foster a spirit of missionary discipleship among the parishes of the diocese.
“I’m excited because I see the work and presence of Caritas as a key factor in the underpinning, enabling and strengthening of our parishes to be more outward looking and engaged with the needs of the most needy and marginalised of our society and our world.
“All of this for me resonates strongly with the Vatican II vision of the Church as being at the heart of our world and always at its service.”
Watch Bishop Patrick’s keynote talk
‘The work of hope has begun already’
We were joined by Dr Amy Daughton, practical theologian from the University of Birmingham. Having heard all that was said in the morning, Amy gave a moving and perceptive reflection on how Pope Francis’ latest encyclical Fratelli Tutti sheds light on our path as a diocese, as we emerge ‘from Covid to Caritas’.
All the sacrifices of lockdown … we are doing for the sake of our bonds with others… No-one is saved alone.
The work we are engaged in today is itself the drawing out of ‘caritas’ from these dark times. In your relations, established and new, the work of hope has begun already.
Hear Amy’s reflection on ’emerging from Covid to Caritas via Fratelli Tutti‘
Pope Francis challenges us in Fratelli Tutti (196):
We do well to ask ourselves,
Why I am doing this?
What is my real aim?…
The real, and potentially painful, questions will be,
How much love did I put into my work?
What did I do for the progress of our people?
What mark did I leave on the life of society?
What real bonds did I create?
What positive forces did I unleash?
How much social peace did I sow?
What good did I achieve in the position that was entrusted to me?
Quoted by Amy Daughton in her midday reflection.
Journey in Hope: contemplation into action
Among the many aspirations which emerged from the buzz at Together we are Caritas was that everything we do should be ‘underpinned by spirituality and prayer’. Indeed, ‘the ‘journey of prayer is part of Caritas’.
There’s no better place to start than that. Several people who came would like to help develop the spiritual roots of our missionary outreach. Would you like to join us? If you are looking for a balance between contemplation and action, join others who are seeking the same – for themselves and for others too.
Journey in Hope, an initial meeting in January 2021, will explore how to help individuals and parishes find food for the missionary journey. We’ll gather resources for prayer, patterns for reflection and tools for discernment, and ask the kinds of questions which Pope Francis asks of us above.
What better way to start the new year? You are invited to Journey in Hope, an exploratory meeting by Zoom to plan the journey and take a first step. Get in touch if you are interested, and a date in January will be arranged to suit you.
Many parishes are finding that social media are helping people stay in touch during the second national lockdown. St Mary’s in Loughborough is one of several parishes that have found a Facebook Group particularly useful. These are interactive forums where people can start written conversations and respond to others members’ posts.
Members can share messages, news and requests for prayer or help. Read more about how it has helped St Mary’s here.
Networked Parish is our simple introduction to cost-free online technologies which parishes are likely to find useful. Perhaps there is someone in your parish who could set something up? If not contact us, and we may be able to fix you up with advice and coaching.
Download ‘Networked Parishes’
Sunday 22 November, 2pm-3pm
Pray Without Ceasing Prayer Service for Climate Justice
A short service of prayer, reflection and action on climate justice with CAFOD and friends from around the world. World leaders should have been gathering now for COP26, the crucial UN climate conference that has now been postponed until November 2021. The worship will mark the original date, and reflect on our role in pushing for more ambitious climate action in the coming year. Register here.
Mondays from 30 November, 7.45pm-9.00pm
Introducing Laudato Si’
You are invited to an Advent series of online talks on Laudato Si’, Pope Francis’ encyclical on care the Earth our common home. The series opens with Paul Bodenham on Reading Laudato Si’ with heart, head and hands, and closes with Sr Margaret Atkins OSA from Boarbank Hall in Lancaster Diocese.
- Newsletter 15 November 2020
- Newsletter 22 November 2020