Lent is traditionally the time when we reflect on the life of Jesus, his death and resurrection through prayer, fasting and almsgiving.
The Caritas Lent Appeal offers Catholics a real and practical way of doing something extra this Lenten season. The Caritas Lent Appeal is our major annual appeal. The donations we receive from the Lent Appeal are used to support locally run community development projects in communities in need in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Pacific as well as advocacy work here in New Zealand.
Gospel values and Catholic social teaching provide the foundation and framework for our work. Caritas can be translated as ‘love in action’ which means that we work to make a real difference in the lives of people living with poverty or injustice.
The theme for this year’s appeal is from a quote by Mother Teresa, ‘For faith to be true, it has to be generous and loving.’ The appeal envelopes are divided into six sections, each highlighting a particular project assisted by Caritas funds. You can pick up an envelope from your parish or contact the Caritas office.
Each year Caritas develops a set of education resources for Catholic primary and secondary schools. These are designed to work in with the religious studies and social studies curriculum.
The resources for primary schools focus on a country where Caritas supports local partners. This year pupils will learn about the diverse islands that make up Indonesia. On Friday 7 April, primary schools will take part in the Solidarity Day for pupils to stand alongside those around the world who are in need.
Secondary schools address the issue of ‘We rather than Me’ in responding to disasters, with the Manawatu Floods and the Asia Tsunami providing the basis for learning and discussion.
Caritas’s new education coordinator, Catherine Gibbs who designed and wrote the resources hopes that, ‘through engaging with the wide range of materials provided, children and students will gain insights into the way people recognise the presence of the Holy Spirit in their lives and that teachers will deepen their understanding of the principles of Catholic social teaching.’
For more information: Catherine Gibbs, 04 496 1742 or