Social Justice & Ecology

JSS establishes international Jesuit prison network

Jesuit Social Services (JSS) in Australia has formed an International Jesuit Prison Network (IJPN) to facilitate collaboration and support among Jesuit organisations and individuals around the world who are working in prisons or with former prisoners.  Set up late last year, the network already has the support of all the Jesuit Conferences and various Jesuit organisations including Jesuit Networking, which has offered to assist in connecting interested people.

JRS Syria awarded 2014 Pax Christi International Peace Award

The 2014 Pax Christi International Peace Award has been granted to Jesuit Refugee Service Syria (JRS Syria) for its outstanding dedication in providing emergency relief to Syrians since the war began in 2012.  According to the latest UN statistics, more than 9 million Syrians are in dire need of humanitarian assistance, including 6,5 million internally displaced persons and 2,6 million refugees in neighbouring countries.

JRS Cambodia celebrates World Interfaith Harmony Week

Jesuit Refugee Service Cambodia marked World Interfaith Harmony Week with an interfaith event at Mindol Metta Karuna on February 8. The event gathered people of different faiths who want to work together for justice, peace and a development that sustains all especially the poorest and most excluded. 

During the event, participants were asked to think about what they could do for a world of justice and peace, and make a promise by choosing one of the following and placing it in the Interfaith circle.

Building back after Typhoon Haiyan

Three months after Typhoon Haiyan struck, thousands of people in the islands of Visayas continue to reel from the devastation it wreaked.  Debris from wrecked houses still litters the shores of many islands. Makeshift homes made of the same rubble have mushroomed amidst the chaos despite the numerous tents and bunks provided by both local and international aid.  Many people in the largely fishing and farming communities still cannot earn a living because they have not been able to replace the boats, crops and equipment destroyed by the typhoon.

Deepening the mission of reconciliation in the work of JRS

How can we accompany refugees without responding to their longing for healing and peace? This is the question posed in a newly-published guide that aims to strengthen the role of Jesuit Refugee Service in the reconciliation of groups of people displaced through conflict.

Remembering Pedro Arrupe SJ

This month we remember Pedro Arrupe, the 28th Superior General of the Society of Jesus who died on February 5, 1991 aged 83.  An incredibly charismatic general, he spent the last 10 years of his life confined in the infirmary, patiently enduring the debilitating effects of a cerebral stroke. 

Celebrating 400 years since the Jesuits first arrived in Vietnam

The Society of Jesus in Vietnam has begun a year of celebrations leading up to the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the Jesuits in the country.  On January 18, 1615, the first Jesuits arrived at the port of Hoi An - Italian Jesuit Fr Francesco Buzomi and Portuguese Jesuits Fr Diogo Carvalho and Br Antonios Dias with some other 70 Jesuits expelled from Japan. They took refuge with the Japanese Catholic community taking asylum in Hoi An, after fleeing the furious persecutions of Christians in Japan.

First Myanmar Jesuit gathering

All members of the Myanmar Jesuit Mission residing in the country gathered for the first time to share their thoughts and experiences of the Mission.  The three-day gathering in late December provided the group with an opportunity to meet and share their experience as Jesuits, deepen their understanding of the mission, and explore the future needs of the Church in Myanmar and the role of the Society of Jesus in that future. The rapid changes taking place in the country make this a matter of urgency for the Church and the Society.

The Francis Effect

From Australia has come a new online book, The Francis Effect: Living the Joy of the Gospel, which offers insights from Catholic leaders in the country on the challenges and inspiration needed to fully live the joy of the Gospel in varied ministries.  Jointly published by Catholic Mission and Catholic Religious Australia, The Francis Effect is an opportunity to engage with Evangelii Gaudium in an active and practical way.    

The role of structure and infrastructure in disaster reduction

There is now an awareness that after typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) hit central Philippines on November 8, infrastructure broke down, and not just roads and bridges, but also communication channels, power, water, transportation. Economic structures where subsistence co-exists with poverty also broke down, and there is now the immediate challenge for people to build livable structures as their housing. Structuring a whole response of sustainable cities and villages as a reality, beyond an architectural print-out, is the challenge the country faces.

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