Inspired by a dedicated and experienced team of volunteers who visit primary schools in the Diocese, pupils in Hallam have supported Missio’s children’s branch, Mission Together, for many years.  Through their prayers and fundraising pupils care for children living in poverty overseas and help support Missio’s projects that protect and care for children’s spiritual and physical wellbeing; offering children safety, healthcare, education, and hope for the future.  In this way, children in Hallam are living out Mission Together’s motto: ‘Children helping children’.

  Missio is the Pope’s charity for world mission.  It ignites God’s love by helping local missionaries to work with global communities that are most in need in the poorest areas of the world, regardless of their background or belief.  Whatever missionaries need to help them share the joy of the Gospel, Missio strives to provide it – whether it is a motorbike for a priest to celebrate Mass in remote villages; a simple community hall so people can gather together or vaccinations to protect vulnerable children.

  To mark The Year of the Word ‘The God who Speaks’ – an initiative of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales – Mission Together has developed Lent resources that highlight Jesus’ words and actions in Scripture and how, through them, he reveals God’s love for us all.  By drawing on Jesus’ example, children, no matter how young or small, can respond to Jesus’ call to mission, so that everyone – everywhere, might know that we are all brothers and sisters under a loving God.

Volunteers (L to R) Peter Davison, Colette Murphy (Diocese of Shrewsbury), Maureen Cunningham, Ann Barry, Caroline Jones, Ann Dunphy

  This year’s Lent Liturgies provide a template to support primary school teachers in leading collective worship and incorporate pupil-led dramas for the six Sunday Gospel readings.  Missio’s Key Stage 3/4 Lent reflections also invite students to delve deeper into key seasonal scriptures to help them to grow in faith, explore the events leading up to Christ’s death and resurrection, and understand his revelation as the Son of God.

  Mindful that not all Catholic children are able to attend Catholic primary schools, this year Mission Together offers a parish Lent calendar to mirror the annual one provided for schools.  This encourages families to take part in the Year of the Word and to celebrate the seasonal feast days and traditions of the Church, including the Lenten saints’ days and Friday Stations of the Cross.

  Mission Together’s family calendar, primary school materials and secondary school resources are available to download from  missio.org.uk/lent.  Any or all these resources may be useful for the important last days of Lent.  Resources are free but schools and parishes are encouraged to fundraise to support Missio’s children’s projects overseas.

  If you would like to know more about Missio’s work; are interested in volunteering for Mission Together in Hallam Diocese, or just want to know about Missio’s red box scheme, please contact Missio’s Diocesan Director, Deacon John Bell at jcgb55@hotmail.com or 07425173312.