A Brief History
The Food For Faith website had small beginnings when in 2010 on a Parish Holy Land pilgrimage I kept a daily blog for parishioners friends and family back home. When the pilgrimage concluded the blog continued with regular reflections on aspects of my life as a diocesan priest.
With my ministry also including retreats and seminars in other parts of New Zealand and further afield there were other bits and pieces from other places.
During these early days it was clear that the online reflections were useful for many people and feedback was encouraging. Jason McTague had been assisting with some of the technical aspects of the blog and his background and skill in both theology and IT made him the ideal partner in taking Food For Faith to a new stage.
Jason developed and maintains the current www.foodforfaith.org.nz website which launched in December 2013 and a new era of the Food For Faith mission arrived with regular written posts, video production and sharing of other resources and inspiration.
A significant outreach began for Lent 2017 with a commitment to offering brief daily Lenten reflections to subscribers. The response was enthusiastic and this initiative has been followed with the same offering for Lent 2018 as well as Advent 2017.
As the Food For Faith project grew it was clear that a broader perspective was needed. This led to the formation of an oversight team to work with Jason and myself and in 2017 Anne Dickinson (Wellington), Merv Duffy SM (Auckland) and Rob Farrell (Christchurch) became a part of the FFF team.
The team has great vision and enthusiasm for the FFF mission, encouraging future development and guiding and monitoring content and outreach possibilities.
In recent years I have become aware that the majority of baptised Catholics have no regular contact with parishes or Catholic schools, yet they are very open to faith and still proudly call themselves Catholic. They are hungry for good food for faith. Many of those who are regularly participating in the life of the church comment that they are seeking more robust food for their faith.
It is our hope that this Food For Faith mission helps to satisfy this healthy hunger.
Fr John O’Connor
I’m a priest of the Catholic diocese of Christchurch and since ordination in 1985 my ministry has included parish life, teaching and retreats and spiritual direction.
I have had some great opportunities to study as an adult, initially theology, then spirituality, spiritual direction and liturgy and my teachers have included some remarkable visionaries who encouraged me to live life with God in abundance.
In early. 2018 I was appointed to develop the Food For Fatih online ministry while continuing as Vocations Director for the diocese and offering retreats and seminar opportunities for people both in the Christchurch diocese and further afield.