BYA STAFF REPORTER A PLEA to British Cath olics to give more to the have-nots of the world came from two sources this week.
Mr. Noel Charles, deputy administrator and secretary of the Catholic Fund for Over seas Development, said he would "be surprised if 30 per cent of the Catholics in this country even knew of his organisation, let alone make contributions to it.
"Of course, many are possibly contributing to the world's
poor through Oxfam and other, Catholic relief organisations, but I still think the Catholic community is capable of a much greater effort."
Mr. Michael Elmer, a research fellow in Latin-Arneri can politics at Liverpool University, said: "How can we urge M.P.s to give more aid when we have done so little ourselves?
"A year ago Cardinal Heenan made a much publicised pledge of one per cent of Westminster Diocesan Funds for family relief. and urged parishes in the diocese to follow suit. What has become of that promise, and how many parishes have seized the initiative?"
Besides securing Mr. Charles, formerly of the British Foreign Office and Catholic Relief Service in Geneva, CAFOD has embarked on a campaign to increase its aid to underdeveloped countries to "at least £200,000.4' "It helped 110 projects last year." said Mr. Charles. "We hope to double that figure this year. Like Oxfam we will concentrate on schemes that get the people of the underdeveloped countries to help themselves. Schemes such as water-wells, better irrigation, better farming equipment and so on, but unlike Oxfam our advertising campaign won't be pushed with shock pictures of starving children.
"We are counting on the spiritual motivation of pracs tising Catholics. They have been generous and we arc confident they are capable of being even more generous.
"Although we are making Family Fast Day on March 8 a major drive we hope that eventually we will get Catholic families to give on a weekly basis through family collection boxes.
Vatican posts for 14 Bishops
CONTINUING his internationalisation of the Church's central administration, the Pope has appointed 14 Bishops from various parts of the world to posts in Vatican congregations. They include seven to the Sacred Congregation of Bishops.