Charities combine to provide election resources for Catholics

CAFOD provides practical support to people and communities in need around the world.
But as part of its mission, the charity also encourages Catholics in England and Wales to respond to the call of the Church to promote the common good, inviting all of us to play our part in creating the social conditions necessary to bring God’s kingdom closer on earth.
With the next general election on the horizon, CAFOD and St Vincent de Paul (SVP) are launching A Year of Encounter, an initiative inviting parishes to reach out to local candidates in our areas to find out more about their views on the issues that we, as people of faith, care about.
This is a great opportunity to share with them our concerns about those issues, too.
As Christians, we have a long tradition of being actively involved in the big issues of our time.
From Catherine of Siena to Oscar Romero, the lives of many saints show us that the greater their devotion to the Lord, the deeper their commitment to addressing the social problems of their time.
The Church tells us that: “All citizens ought to be aware of their right and duty to promote the common good by casting their votes…”
But in order to arrive at the polling station as well informed as possible, it’s important to know our prospective MPs’ views on the things that matter to us.
For this reason, the SVP and CAFOD are inviting parishes to reach out to their local candidates ahead of the next election.
This is not about political affiliations, but rather about strengthening community participation as a local faith group and practicing the culture of encounter Pope Francis talks about.
“With our faith we must create a ‘culture of encounter,’ a culture of friendship, a culture in which we find brothers and sisters, in which we can also speak with those who think differently,” he says.
With more than five million Catholics in the UK, the general election is an opportunity to bring attention to the big issues of our time.

Using your voice and your vote from an informed perspective

CAFOD and the SVP are collaborating to equip individuals and parishes with training to help you to speak to your candidates on the issues that matter.     We have prepared resources to help to inform you, including which questions to ask your candidate on a number of topical issues such as those mentioned below.
Here at home in the UK we have the cost-of-living crisis that is seeing ever-growing numbers of people struggling to make ends meet and provide food for their families turning to food banks.
There is also the rising statistics of children living in poverty and the increasing costs of energy that puts added strain on already overstretched budgets, to name just a few issues.
Then there are the desperate situations caused by armed conflicts raging in countries around the world, the effects of the climate crisis on people’s lives and livelihoods, global hunger and migration and asylum, the debt crisis faced by many countries, business and human rights and building resilient communities and tackling regional inequalities.
Many SVP members and CAFOD supporters have been involved in volunteering or campaigning for many years on issues such as poverty, food and climate.
In 2021, parishes were closed and the country was in the grip of Covid-19.     Yet parishioners across the country organised themselves to hold meetings with their MPs and discuss vital issues that affected the world during the pandemic.
The greater the number of parishes contacting candidates, the stronger our Catholic voice will be.
The resources are available to order from CAFOD. Alongside this we will be organising two training sessions online for supporters and volunteers.
These will take place online on Thursday April 25 from 6.30pm to 8.30pm and Saturday May 4 from 11am to 1pm. 
You can sign up online at or contact us at
If you have any questions or want to know more about how you can get involved, please contact me at or telephone 07779 804253.

For resources, more info or to sign up to join a training session, go to The online training sessions for all are on Thursday April 25 (6.30pm to 8.30pm) and Saturday May 4 (11am to 1pm).

Carol Cross
Community Participation Coordinator

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This