Caritas compassion on display

On Shrove Tuesday, 25 February, people from across the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle gathered at Sacred Heart Cathedral, Hamilton, to launch Caritas Australia’s Project Compassion, the theme of which is “Go Further Together”.

Students and representatives from the Diocese’s 59 schools filled the Cathedral to participate in a liturgy and reflect on the amazing work of Caritas.

A highlight of the liturgy was a drama reflection ASPIRE director Anna Kerrigan prepared along with some of her students.

The ASPIRE students represented six stories of people from around the world Caritas is currently helping — Shirley from The Philippines, Phany from Cambodia, Barry from Australia, Sakun from India, Tawonga from Malawi and Dominic from Papua New Guinea. After each story, the following words were sung: “And God saw that she/he was good, and God saw that she/he was good."

Each week during Lent, the full stories of these people will be shared on

Bishop Bill commissioned this for each person during Lent.

Contemplate: be aware of God’s presence with you and God’s love for you and the world.

Pray: it is the responsibility of everyone baptised to pray for others.

Listen: to the Word of God and the stories that Project Compassion offers each week of Lent. What is God saying to us through these stories?

Act justly: in all your relationships and in your care for our earth.

Be generous: give as much as you can to the poor via the Project Compassion boxes I will give you, and give of yourself wherever you are.

And fast: go without – don’t consume so much; live more simply; and fast from the things in your life that are unjust.  

As is the tradition on Shrove Tuesday, the morning was concluded with pancakes, ice cream and maple syrup in the Southern Cross Hall.

Students will be encouraged to donate money to the Project Compassion collection boxes in their classrooms over the Lenten period to support development projects around the world. These projects help millions of people each year.

Thanks to the generosity of the Australian public, last year Caritas Australia reached 1.52 million marginalised people worldwide, including in Australia. In 2019, more than 1000 parishes and 1300 schools helped to raise $10.7 million through Project Compassion.



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Brooke Robinson Image
Brooke Robinson

Brooke is Content Officer for the Communications Team in the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle