Water challenge: Flushing, floods and Fast Day collection

Father Rob and water at the altarDay three: It’s been a busy 48 hours.  We made the CAFOD Thirst For change campaign the focus of our prayer at mass, inviting people to fill in the campaign cards after the homily and to write a prayer of thought about their ‘Thirst for Change’ on the ‘raindrop’ cards.

Then we collected the cards up together with the ordinary Sunday parish collection in bright red buckets.  We were able to announce that their Fast Day collection the previous week had raised nearly £1,400 (leaving our ‘Bucket-o-meter’ suspended just above the blue ‘water-level’ on the back-wall of the sanctuary).  Sponsor me here >>

I suggested that campaigning for justice is one of the ways we could rediscover a sense of the energy and passion visible in the Gospel of the Cleansing of the Temple – an energy that often seems to be lacking in our consumer culture.

Today, after walking through the mists of the early morning to collect my water ration, I was invited to go into the Primary School to lead assemblies.  How to get children thinking about how they use water?

I pointed out that if everyone in the school went to the toilet just once in the morning, they would have used water weighing as much as two medium-sized cars to flush the loo;  and, in the course of 24 hours, collectively they would have used enough water for toilet-flushing to flood a class-room to the depth of half-a-metre.

And then, of course, I pointed out what it would be like to live in a poor community in a developing country where running water wasn’t available and how it might be necessary to spend hours every day collecting water.

Call on the PM for clean water and safe sanitation for all >>

One of the teachers tells me that they had some good conversations in class afterwards – and I’m sure there will be more discussions in homes across the parish.

One of the little ones in our Children’s Liturgy yesterday had written on her raindrop:  “Tell Daddy, no deep baths!”  Poor Daddy …

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