Last week Pope Benedict XVI began a new series of catecheses that will cover the Year of Faith, which he said is intended “to renew our enthusiasm at believing in Jesus Christ.” He went on to say this revival will, as a result, “bear concrete witness to the transforming power of the faith.”
The Holy Father wants to help people understand that the faith “is not something extraneous and distant from real life, but the very heart thereof.” Our faith is a belief in a God who is love, who came close to mankind by taking on human flesh and gave himself up for us on the cross to save us.
Cross Catholic and our partners are committed to spreading this Gospel message in the manner of 1 John 3:18, which calls us to: “…not only love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.”
That’s why we support Catholic servants like Father John Fortune, who is living a life obedient to Christ’s sacrificial love in rural Kenya. Fr. Fortune is priest to the Maasai, a legendary society living as pastoralists in the Great Rift Valley—an area recently devastated by the East Africa Drought. To offer life-saving relief, Cross Catholic is helping Fr. Fortune build an extensive infrastructure of water storage tanks and piping to provide clean water to the area’s 42,000 thirsting residents.
And this relationship founded in Catholic charity is having a ripple effect that is ultimately demonstrating the transforming power of faith.
“Because of our involvement in Ewuaso Kedong, the people have come to respect the Catholic Church more as they see we act out of true Christian and selfless motives,” Fr. Fortune said.
Through our joint efforts to meet an immediate physical need, Fr. Fortune has had the opportunity to spread the Gospel message to far-flung villages who have never before heard the words of Jesus Christ. As a result, Cross Catholic is helping Fr. Fortune do so much more than provide clean water to thousands; we are also bringing the good news of the Living Water, which alone has the power to truly transform lives.
In light of this Year of Faith, Fr. Fortune’s actions and words echo our Holy Father’s when he said, in the world “there is domination, possession and exploitation… man is impoverished, degraded and disfigured. Christian faith, industrious in charity and strong in hope, does not limit life but makes it more human.”