Archbishop of Dublin launches Diocesan Food Appeal

14 Nov 2013

Archbishop of Dublin launches Diocesan Food Appeal

Laurence O’ Toole, man of faith, you opened your heart and your doors to those who were poor. Increase our awareness of those in need and inspire us to act with justice and charity at all times.

For the first time since he became Archbishop of Dublin almost 10 years ago, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin has launched a food appeal for Dublin families who are struggling to cope this winter. The Dublin Diocesan-Crosscare food appeal will take place over the four weeks of Advent, beginning on 1st December.

Archbishop Martin launched the appeal today, on the feast day of St. Laurence O’ Toole, in response to a request from Crosscare. The Crosscare food bank is struggling to cope with demand for basic food items, from families and charities around the city.

At Mass in the Pro–Cathedral this morning(11am), Archbishop Martin said, ”None of us should be satisfied that we really see the poverty around us,” he added, “We can so easily get caught up in our own concerns, placing them first, that we do not notice that our sight has become blurred towards poverty and suffering.  The poor rarely clamour.  They just try to survive.  When they cry out, the ears of the mainstream may well be too distracted to hear them.”

Last week, the Food Bank had requests for food from 120 individuals and families in one community. They were only in a position to give parcels to 40.

At the current rate, Crosscare will distribute 750 tonnes of food by the end of this year. The figure for 2012 was 500 tonnes.

They need urgent help sourcing food supplies or more people could be turned away in the coming weeks.

Crosscare supplies food directly to those who need it, and also to 10 charities working to help people who are marginalised, excluded or living in poverty, including the St. Vincent de Paul.

In response to this need, Archbishop Martin said he was asking all Dublin parishes to help collect food for the food bank over the four weeks of Advent. Parishioners will be able to bring food supplies to their local parish at weekend Mass times. Crosscare will collect and redistribute the food every Monday and Tuesday.

Types of food urgently needed include pasta/rice, fruit juice, tea/coffee, soup, sugar, powdered milk, tinned meat/fish, tinned veg/fruit, packaged dessert, biscuits, and hygiene products. ENDS

Further information: Annette O’Donnell, 087 8143462/8360723

  • Photographs of Archbishop Martin visiting the food bank this morning are available from John Mc Elroy, Photos  087-2416985