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X Factor’s Talia Dean launches CAFOD’s Big Pilgrimage 2024

21 May 2024
X Factor’s Talia Dean launches CAFOD’s Big Pilgrimage 2024

Singer-songwriter and former X Factor finalist Talia Dean is a CAFOD ambassador

Talia Dean, the singer-songwriter and former X Factor finalist, has teamed up with the Catholic aid agency CAFOD to launch the charity’s first-ever Big Pilgrimage event.

In her role as a new ambassador for the international aid agency, Talia will lead worship songs during a Holy Hour on 1 June as part of the launch of the Big Pilgrimage 2024 at St George’s Cathedral in Southwark.

On 10 May, Pope Francis proclaimed a new Jubilee Year to start in December themed around ‘Pilgrims of Hope’. CAFOD’s Big Pilgrimage, which involves walking and praying towards a holy site, is being launched ahead of the Catholic Church’s Jubilee Year 2025 to offer pilgrims a space to pray and reflect on global issues of justice and inequality.

Talia said:

“I was over the moon when I was asked to become an ambassador for CAFOD. I’ve been supporting the charity’s work since I was a child - I find it inspiring that they are helping people in some of the world's worst humanitarian crises, driven by their love of God.

“When they asked if I’d lead worship songs as part of the Big Pilgrimage launch, it felt like it was God’s timing as I’m now dedicating myself full-time to Christian worship music. Supporting this pilgrimage will help me grow spiritually and will be a fantastic opportunity for the pilgrims to encounter the love of God.”

People who sign up for CAFOD’s Big Pilgrimage can choose to visit one of three different hospitality hubs. At these hubs, budding pilgrims will receive a warm welcome and hospitality, can take time to pray, and will be able to find out more about CAFOD’s work through a variety of interactive activities designed for all age groups. Participants will also be invited to take part in a pilgrimage walk either on their own or as part of one of our walking groups.

The first event is at St George’s Cathedral in Southwark on Saturday 1 June, with events at Ampleforth Abbey in North Yorkshire on 22 June and St Thomas’ Cathedral in Northampton on 6 July to follow. Participants will also be invited to help raise funds as part of the Sudan crisis emergency appeal.

Dominic DeBoo, Community Fundraising Executive at CAFOD, said:

“The Big Pilgrimage is a fantastic opportunity for you to find a local pilgrimage experience and decide how far you want to walk. It’s very exciting to bring people together to explore how they can play their part in offering hope to others.

“We’re thrilled and delighted that Talia kindly agreed to help us launch our first-ever Big Pilgrimage event. We are excited to benefit from her talents as she leads us in prayer and worship.”

Talia concludes: “I have always been a Catholic but since last December my faith has come alive in a new and exciting way. I am delighted to have the opportunity, through this pilgrimage, to use my gift to share the love of God with others.”

You can sign up for or find out more about joining the Big Pilgrimage by visiting

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For more information, interviews or photos, please contact Anil Ranchod:, +44 (0)7969 984001.

CAFOD out-of-hours media hotline: +44 (0)7919 301429.


  1. In the Catholic Church, a Jubilee or Holy Year is a special year of forgiveness and reconciliation in which people are invited to come back into right relationship with God, with one another, and with all of creation. A Jubilee Year is celebrated by the Church every 25 years. This has been the case since 1470, when Pope Paul II changed it from every 50 years.

  2. CAFOD is the official aid agency of the Catholic Church in England and Wales, and part of Caritas International, working with communities across Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Latin America to fight poverty and injustice. The agency works with people in need, regardless of race, gender, religion, or nationality. Follow us on X-Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.

  3. CAFOD has been working in Sudan since the 1970s supporting livelihood opportunities, particularly for smallholder farmers and women. CAFOD is on the ground in Sudan and neighbouring countries, working tirelessly alongside local partners to address urgent humanitarian needs.

  4. CAFOD has launched an emergency appeal to help people affected by the Sudan crisis:

The difference your donations can make:

  • £5 can provide clean water to a family

  • £22 can provide essential medicine and hygiene kits

  • £40 can provide emergency shelter for a refugee family

  • £50 can provide emergency food packages.