BY Ryan McDougall | January 25 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print


Craig Lodge and Mary’s Meals team-up to feed the ‘hunger for God’ among Scotland’s youth

The charity Mary’s Meals is to team-up with the Catholic house of prayer where its work began in order to feed the ‘hunger for God’ among ­Scotland’s young people.

The international charity was founded at the Craig Lodge Family House of Prayer, and the two faith-inspired ventures are to join forces for a series of youth retreats for secondary school pupils titled ‘Our Daily Bread.’

The initiative is being backed by Bishop John Keenan of Paisley Diocese, who said he was enthusiastic about its potential.

“I was amazed at how open our young people were for the spiritual food of meaning and hope,” he said. “‘Our Daily Bread’ retreats might just be the answer to the hunger for God that is advancing rapidly in our youth all over Scotland.”

The three-day retreats for pupils and teachers take place at Craig Lodge and aims to show young people the ‘faith behind Mary’s Meals’— which is a driving force of the charity’s mission—and to strengthen their relationships with God.


‘Starving for his love’

Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow, founder of Mary’s Meals, will discuss his journey from an individual fundraiser to head of a global charity, and the young people involved in the retreat will have the chance to see the small shed where the now multinational operation began.

Faith stories, prayer, music and more will also be incorporated into the retreats.

Mr MacFarlane-Barrow said: “Many young people in Scotland humble me with their commitment to feeding the hungry. But many of them are hungry too—hungry for the truth, hungry for meaning.”

A spokesperson for Craig Lodge said that while Mary’s Meals feeds children around the world, ‘there is another kind of hunger that children are suffering from in countries like our own—a spiritual hunger.’

“For all the reasons we know only too well—family breakdown, Church scandal, the confusion of our times—our children’s Faith has been plundered,” the spokesperson said.

“The sad truth is that they are not just hungry for God, they are starving for his love.”


Faith opportunities

The retreats were previously run last year, with the aim of offering young people ‘opportunities to draw close to Jesus, to open their hearts to him and to receive his love.’

The experience includes talks, Faith stories, prayer, adoration, the Sacrament of Reconciliation, music, and a Way of the Cross hill-climb.

One pupil, who attended a previous retreat, said it helped him overcome his fear of going to Confession.

Teachers who took part in a pilot study for ‘Our Daily Bread’ said they were surprised at the effect on their pupils and how they took the initiative to plan prayer services.

The retreats will also include an opportunity to gain deeper insight into the work of Mary’s Meals.

“We are confident that another fruit of these retreats will be a deeper understanding of the origins of Mary’s Meals and an even stronger desire to reach out to our brothers and sisters living in poverty,” a spokesperson for Craig Lodge said.

  • The ‘Our Daily Bread’ retreats will take place from February to November. For more info visit
  • To find out how your school can participate in the retreats, contact Paul Kidd, Craig Lodge Community at, tel: 01838 200216


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