CAFOD is immensely blessed by the generosity and dedication of our supporters. Sadly, many of our supporters over the years have now passed away. Our Memorial Masses are one way we like to pay tribute to them and mark our appreciation for their years of generosity. It provides an opportunity for volunteers, supporters, parishioners and members of the wider public to come together and celebrate their lives.
The 2016 Memorial mass for the Northampton Dioceses was held at Sacred Heart, Leighton Buzzard on 6 November and was organised by the J&P group.
There are memorial masses being held around the country in other dioceses if you would like to attend.
Theresa Short (organist at Sacred Heart) was delighted to be involved in the liturgy and writes :
“We were thrilled to host the annual CAFOD Memorial Mass in our parish celebrated by Parish Priest Fr John Danford. Every year the names of deceased volunteers and supporters are collected in the books of remembrance. At the start of the mass, Bob Garrard (CAFOD parish contact) introduced and explained about the Memorial Mass. The Book of Remembrance for the Northampton Diocese was then carried up by Jim Reuth whose wife Rhona had passed away earlier this year. The book was placed on the altar throughout Mass.
The book includes the names of volunteers, supporters and benefactors of CAFOD, and those remembered by the Candlelight Fund. This is particularly poignant for our parish as Fr Stephen Reith, a former Parish Priest, is remembered through this Candlelight Fund. Throughout his life Fr Steve was passionate about Justice and Peace, equality, helping the poor and less fortunate, and the work of CAFOD was always very close to his heart. In fact, he decided that he wanted to help more actively with the anti-apartheid and he got permission from the Bishop in 1983 to join a movement which was made up of ordinary people who felt strongly about apartheid. Their pressure did help to bring about change and the Presidency of Nelson Mandela. Soon after Fr. Steve came back into parish life, in 1987, he was appointed Parish Priest of Sacred Heart, Leighton Buzzard, where he remained until his retirement in 2002.
Find out how to set up a candle light fund.
Also remembered are the many loyal and generous friends of CAFOD who are at the heart of the work over the years whether it be through prayers, donations, volunteering or campaigning. It is only because of their faith, hope and love, so freely given, that CAFOD, through their partners can help change lives around the world.
Special intercessory prayers were also offered in memory of all CAFOD supporters who have passed away. Adding an extra musical touch to the Mass, the Psalm was sung by the recently formed ‘Sacred Heart Singers’ who also, after Communion, sang ‘I Heard the Voice of Jesus Say’, set to the beautiful tune of Dives and Lazarus by Vaughan Williams. As is the normal Sunday morning practice, refreshments were shared afterwards in the Parish Hall. ”
Debbie Purfield, CAFOD coordinator for the Northampton Diocese said, “The mass was a wonderful opportunity to pay tribute to the brilliant people who have been at the heart of our work: inspirational volunteers and supporters who found time to offer love, practical support and prayers to the world’s most vulnerable communities. They are such an inspiration and we are better because of them.”
Visit our website to find out more about our candlelight fund.