During November, the month of remembrance, we take time to pray for those who have died and give thanks for loved ones who have made a deep and lasting impression on our lives.
Over the years, CAFOD has been blessed to work alongside the kindest and most committed friends any charity could hope for. The insight, faith and strength of our founders and early supporters still shape our values and way of working today.
But one of the saddest aspects of growing older, as individuals and as an organisation, is that some of our closest friends have passed away in recent months and years. In our own diocese we have lost a number of friends who have played an inspirational and important role in our work.
Friends like Auriel Samuelsen.
Auriel Samuelsen was small in stature but she will be remembered as a “great, loving giant of a woman”; as described by her friend and fellow CAFOD volunteer, Sr Vianney Connolly.
Auriel’s life revolved around her faith, her love of education and her passion for justice. After visiting CAFOD projects in Sri Lanka she championed our Trade Justice Campaign and called for the improved treatment of female workers on tea plantations. She also helped Wrexham to become one of the country’s first Fairtrade Dioceses.
With characteristic pragmatism, Auriel took steps to safeguard our work through a gift in her will. In 2002 she told us: “ I’ve supported CAFOD for 20 years of my life so far, so it makes sense to carry on when I’m no longer here. We all want to leave behind something of use, and a legacy to CAFOD is exactly that.”
Auriel put down her placard for the last time in March 2011 but her fight for justice continues; and her memory lives on in the communities given help and hope by her lifetime of love, compassion and campaigning.
So in celebration of our inspiring friends, and as a small token of our appreciation for their years of kindness and dedication, CAFOD North Wales will be holding its Memorial Mass, celebrated by Bishop Peter, at the Cathedral Church of Our Lady of Sorrows, Wrexham on Saturday, 8th November at 12 noon.
All are welcome to join us, whether to remember fellow CAFOD supporters or members of your own family, friends and community who have passed away. At our memorial Mass you can take precious time to remember your loved ones, knowing that you’re among friends.
A book of remembrance will be presented and blessed by Bishop Peter at the Mass. If you would like to add a name to this list you would be very welcome; whether or not you can attend the service itself. Please get in touch with our office at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 01978 355 084 if you’d like to know more.
Refreshments will be provided after the service, so we hope you’ll be able to stay on for a while to speak with other local CAFOD supporters and staff. It would be wonderful to see you at such a special event.