Over Lent, the commmunity of Luton have raised nearly £5,000. The Holy Family & St John, Luton, held a Lent Lunch in aid of CAFOD’s Lent appeal. I got to speak to Maureen Borbone about the creative way she fundraises for Lent alongside her Parishes Lent Lunch.
“I have been involved in Justice and Peace issues from being a toddler at the beginning of the Second World War with my parents. When we moved to Luton in 1973 we were disappointed to find no group in our parish apart so we joined with the group at the Anglian Church in Sundon Village, who were very active at the time. Quite soon they gave us £50 to start our own group , which we did with Ted and Andrea Leather and a few others.
Alongside being involved with CAFOD, the Justice and Peace group support a variety of charities. Over the years, they have been involved in many CAFOD campaigns and have raised thousands of pounds for many different campaigns and appeals.
“The Bags of Blessings I give out to friends and now lots of people come and ask for them. I wrote out forty things for which we should thank God for when other people haven’t got them.
For example, ‘Say a prayer for running water’ and put 2p in the Bags of Blessing for each tap in the house. Some people go barefoot and put in 5p for every pair of shoes you have. The same people come back each year and ask for them.
“So far we have raised £280 but there are still bags coming in, so hopefully, we will have raised over £300. It gets people praying and thinking how lucky we are.”
We run Breakfasts after Morning mass:
“Our former parish priest started having a weekly 7a.m. Mass during Lent and we asked if we could serve tea and coffee and toast. Afterwards and we had a bowl for donations for CAFOD. Fr. used to really encourage people to come and he stayed himself and we used to raise a considerable sum. We are a Fair Trade parish so the marmalade, jam, honey, chocolate spread on offer is all Fair Trade. I buy the food and all the money raised goes to CAFOD, we raised over £35.
The Hunger lunches have become a tradition for the church, Maureen said:
“Originally we made the soup ourselves and spent the whole day before peeling vegetables and cooking. A few years ago I had to prepare soup for WWDP and they bought packets and we just added a few extra frozen veg and it was delicious, easier and cheaper, so that is what we now do plus a roll and butter and tea or coffee.
“We started charging how much people in the third world would have for food for a week and we also run a raffle, we have raised over £500.”
We would like to thank everybody in the parish for their fundraising works and creative ideas to inspire their parish this Lent. Alongside Catholics across the country, generous pupils and parishioners have already raised more than £3.5 million for the Catholic charity’s Lent appeal, which will be matched by the UK Government’s Department for International Development.