Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
February 1, 2009
Share Lent out to raise $1M in Alberta
Development and Peace campaign to bring in Honduran activist to talk about the plight of the poor
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER
The Alberta/Mackenzie-Fort Smith region of the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace (CCODP) is hoping to raise $1 million this year through its Share Lent campaign.
And to help educate people on the plight of the poor of the developing world, the region will welcome Pedro Landa, a solidarity visitor from Honduras.
Landa, a member of Caritas Tegucigalpa who has worked to improve weak mining laws in Honduras, will visit the Alberta/Mackenzie-Fort Smith region from March 11 to 25. He is scheduled to speak at parishes and schools throughout the region.
The campaign, whose theme is See Your Gift Grow, runs from Ash Wednesday, Feb. 17, to Palm Sunday, March 28.
Share Lent is the annual fundraising and education campaign of the CCODP, the official organization for international solidarity of the Catholic Church in Canada. Nationally, the CCODP hopes to raise $10 million.
Funds raised through the campaign are used to educate Canadians and fund development projects in developing nations.
Marie-Claude Poirier, the animator for the Alberta/Mackenzie region, is calling on parishes, schools and other organizations to help make the campaign successful by organizing their own fundraising/educational events.
She said events such as Thinkfasts, spaghetti suppers and benefit concerts are great activities for youth groups and parishes. Some Catholic schools have been organizing Thinkfasts for years now. A Thinkfast is a 25-hour famine that's fun, educational, spiritual and a little challenging.
"Development and Peace really counts on this campaign," Poirier says. "This is how it funds all of its programs and projects. This (campaign) allows us to be there for emergency relief, such as in Haiti, and for those who are trying to better their own lives around the world."
Edmonton Archbishop Richard Smith, vice-president of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, says Share Lent provides an opportunity to respond to the challenge of feeding more than a billion people worldwide who struggle each day to find adequate nourishment for their families.
"Our gifts will grow in goodness as they are used by Development and Peace partners to improve the quality of life for people in Africa, Asia and Latin America," the archbishop said in his campaign message.
"On behalf of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, I encourage you to support the work of Development and Peace by giving generously to Share Lent. Together we can watch our gift grow."
The Share Lent collection often takes place in the parishes of the Alberta/Mackenzie-Fort Smith region on Palm Sunday, March 28.
CCODP will hold a workshop on the Share Lent campaign at the Catholic Pastoral Centre Jan. 30. The workshop is mostly educational and will feature sessions for both beginners and more seasoned members. Participants will learn about the work of the CCODP as well as how to organize a campaign in their own parishes and schools.
On March 20, the Alberta/Mackenzie-Fort Smith region will hold a benefit concert at the University of Alberta's Campus Saint Jean's auditorium. The concert will feature local talent as well as a silent auction. Landa, the solidarity visitor from Honduras, will also speak at one point during the concert.
Since 1967, CCODP has supported more than 15,200 development projects and emergency relief programs, representing a total contribution of more than $530 million.
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