Live Simply: Live in Solidarity with the Poor

In many parts of the developing world, technology has made tremendous improvements to the lives of the poor, many remote from the nearest towns. The poor have instant connectivity. They can watch a movie with an app. They have mobile phones where they can Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp or WeChat family, friends and strangers. Note that these brand names are now verbs widely understood.

And yet, for many in third world countries, what is most basic is sadly lacking. It is the access to water, clean water for cooking, water for washing and sanitation, water for planting and livelihoods, the basics of survival. That is not instant.

Our presentation gives a panoramic perspective on the qualities of water and a glimpse of pressing issues for the future if we do nothing. Catholic Social Teaching provides a moral compass on what ought we to do.

If you have Microsoft PowerPoint, you can view the presentation here.

For a PDF version click here.

We thank you for your support of CAFOD, Monsignor Kelly Fund, SPICMA and the Holy Water Project for India.


CAFOD livesimply

St Johns has registered to become a CAFOD livesimply parish. We are on a journey....

The livesimply challenge is an opportunity for Catholic communities - parishes, schools, religious orders and chaplaincies - to respond to Pope Francis’ invitation in Laudato Si' to “work with generosity and tenderness in protecting this world which God has entrusted to us”.

More than 40 parishes have registered to accept the livesimply challenge.

What is the CAFOD livesimply challenge?

It is a challenge to communities who can show how they have been living:

  • Simply through spiritual action.
  • In solidarity with people in poverty.
  • Sustainably with creation.

Some livesimply communities have encouraged people to walk or cycle to church or school, join a climate change campaign, or donate to a local food bank. The registration celebrates what we have already done and inspires us to do more. It helps our community to live, not just more simply, but also more fully.

Registering for the livesimply challenge

To register we were able to demonstrate to CAFOD that our parishioners are:

  • Praying for peace in the world through praying the rosary together before weekend masses.
  • Working in solidarity with people in poverty through being an integral part of the Churches Together Soup Run, and also through the support of our charities that give aid to the developing world.
  • In the process of creating the River Avon Garden project to sustain God’s creation of flowers, birds and insects.

Qualifying for a livesimply award

To qualify for a CAFOD livesimply award we will need to pass an assessment by independent CAFOD assessors. It means looking at how as a community we can live even more simply so that others can simply live.

Do you have suggestions to share? Please email Irene Prentice, CAFOD contact at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Our registration certificate can be viewed here.

CAFOD: Northern Uganda agricultural challenges

A report of a recent talk by guest speaker Alex Abaca, who gives a first hand account of the positive interventions by the local Catholic Church and CAFOD/CARITAS in addressing ecological, water and agricultural challenges in Northern Uganda can be read here.

Raising funds for the East African drought

A team from the Bath-based energy efficiency consultancy B:SSEC Ltd has completed a 70km hike across the Lake District to raise funds to tackle the on-going drought in East Africa.

The B:SSEC team, comprised of Paul Bennett, Wayne Ward and Chris Joyce, raised over £870 during last month’s trek for CAFOD, the official aid agency of the Catholic church.

For more details click here.

Calling Young Adults

CAFOD Gap Year volunteer vacancies are open for 18-30 year olds.

Last year, a student from Trowbridge went on a CAFOD Gap year. More information can be found on the CAFOD website at

Laudato Sí Parliamentary debate

The motion was intended to set the scene for a parliamentary session in which backbenchers could give their views to the government on the forthcoming Paris Climate Change Conference which aims for a legally binding and universal agreement on climate, from all the nations of the world.


David Packham attended on behalf of CAFOD and has provided this summary report.