Saturday 23rd September saw members of Catholic Care joining Parishioners from across the Diocese to gather at Notre Dame Sixth Form College for the Launch of Caritas Leeds. Philip McCarthy, CEO of Caritas Social Action Network (CSAN) informed those present of the history and how the Leeds Diocese would become part of national and international organisation.
In his opening address Bishop Marcus quoted the letter of St James saying that it is not sufficient to have good words and that good works must also be part of our response. He told all gathered that these works are at the very centre of our faith. This led to Bishop Marcus explaining the 3 fold expression of the Church’s Mission and that these elements are inseparable:
- Proclamation of the word
- Celebration of the Sacraments
- Exercising Charity
From this the Bishop then defined Caritas as the ordered expression of the love of one’s neighbour within the communion and mission of the church.
Following this inspiring address all present broke away to attend one of seven workshops. Carol Hill (Director of Catholic Care) and Rachel Beedle (Volunteer Co-ordinator) led the workshop entitled “Volunteering – What’s it all about?”. We started with 2 short films of projects within the Charity’s community services as examples of how people can volunteer at Catholic Care. The workshop was then expanded to talk about volunteering generally, what people can do, what they can receive through volunteering and how volunteers themselves are valued.
A common theme for an action point for Parishioners to take away from the workshop was to look at what could be done in their Parish and in some cases with the support of Catholic Care.
The afternoon ended with a blessing and people left feeling enthused with the vision of carrying forward Caritas Leeds.