News from our Gapper

Bridgid Duffy, our Step into the Gap volunteer, tells us a little about what she’s been doing for CAFOD and her imminent trip to Ethiopia.

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Bridgid- from Allendsford to Ethiopia

I have been at the diocesan Youth Ministry Team (YMT) for just over 4 months now, and what an amazing experience it has been! I have had time to focus on personal development, as well as growing in my own faith. However, most importantly, I have already encountered around 2000 young people on retreats at the Youth village, where myself, and the rest of YMT, help them understand how much God loves them.

Additionally, I have done a wide range of activities during retreats to raise awareness about CAFOD, and current global issues. For instance, a very powerful activity that I have done quite often with the young people is a refugee simulation activity.  In this activity, the young people get a sense of the struggles that refugees have to go through, which is then followed by the opportunity to write and send a message of hope to a refugee. The young people find this extremely thought provoking and insightful.

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A message of hope written by one of our young people

As you can imagine, my year so far has been incredible, however my trip to Ethiopia is imminent! I can’t even begin to put into words how excited I am. I will be flying to the capital of Ethiopia, Addis Ababa, on the 24th of January with my fellow Gappers.

While in Ethiopia we will be visiting various HIV/AIDS projects, climate change adaptation projects and possibly getting involved with music and art classes for street children.

I have no doubt that this will be a life changing experience, that will help me see the world from a completely different perspective. I have such a passion for social justice, so I cant wait to see in action the work that CAFOD is doing to combat the issues surrounding it. I have such a deep longing to learn more and encounter people from a completely different culture to my own. However, I also hope that I can share my own experiences with the people who I meet in Ethiopia, and consequently form a relationship where we can learn from one another.

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Bridgid and fellow Gappers all set for Ethiopia

Finally, despite being an extremely outgoing person, I can’t deny that I am nervous about my up coming trip. However, this emotion is undoubtedly overpowered with an overwhelming sense of excitement. I am ready to step out of my comfort zone, and literally ‘Step into the Gap’ to make a positive change in this world.

You’ll be able to hear more about CAFOD’s work in Ethiopia from Brdigid right here in the coming weeks. In the meantime, if you’d like to get involved in CAFOD’s refugee action, please follow this link for more information.

Introducing Bridgid our new Step into the Gap Volunteer

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We’re delighted to welcome Bridgid, our new Step into the Gap volunteer! She told us what had inspired her to get involved in CAFOD’s gap year programme.

Hi! My name is Bridgid. I’m 23 years old and I’m from Newcastle upon Tyne. I have recently graduated from the University of Dundee with a degree in Psychology. I’m now about to begin my journey on CAFOD’s Step into the Gap programme, where I’ll be placed at YMT in the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle, which I am extremely excited about!

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CAFOD Hexham & Newcastle Year of Mercy Pilgrimage to Holy Island, Saturday 10 September 2016.

Come and join us for our CAFOD Hexham and Newcastle Year of Mercy Pilgrimage to Holy Island on Saturday 10 September. This year our pilgrimage will focus on the refugee crisis and people will be asked to write messages of hope which will be presented to refugees later in the year. We will be using the Lampedusa Cross reflections throughout the pilgrimage.

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Crossing to Holy Island on The Pilgrim’s Way

Our walk across the causeway begins promptly at 12.30pm. There will be a coinciding liturgy in St Aidan’s RC church on the island at 1.30pm and the day will conclude with Holy Mass, celebrated by Fr Chris Hughes at 3.00pm in St Mary’s church in the priory grounds.

We need volunteers on the day!  We need stewards, musicians, readers, Eucharistic Ministers… can you help? If so please get in touch either by email; hexhamandnewcastle@cafod.org.uk or by phoning 0191 384 4847