Social Justice & Ecology

Three Jesuits awarded Timor-Leste’s highest honour

The Government of Timor-Leste has conferred the country’s highest honour on three Jesuit priests.  Fr Tarcisius Dewanto SJ, Fr Karl Albrecht (Carolus Albrecht Karim Arbie) SJ and Fr Jaime Coelho SJ were awarded the Ordem de Timor Leste (Order of Timor-Leste), in two ceremonies held in May to recognise the contribution of priests, religious men and women and missionaries to the country’s struggle for peace and independence.

Australian Jesuit Province to divest from fossil fuels

Australian Provincial Fr Brian McCoy SJ has committed the Australian Jesuits to divesting from fossil fuels.

“In the light of our commitment to reconciliation with creation, we believe that divestment is an ethical, impactful and valuable opportunity to consider not only for the Australian Province but for all Australian companies,” said Fr McCoy in a statement released for World Environment Day on June 5.

Promoting reconciliation and justice among Indigenous Peoples in Mindanao

In recent months, Indigenous Peoples in Cabanglasan, Bukidnon in Mindanao have had the opportunity to voice their concerns regarding their rights in a series of gatherings organised by the Philippine Province Jesuit Indigenous Peoples (IP) Ministry, the local government of Cabanglasan, the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) and other civil society organisations.

Helping small farmers in rural Cambodia succeed

Life in rural Cambodia is hard, especially for small farmers.  Each year, they struggle to get a decent yield to provide for their families.  This is why the Centre for Research on Optimal Agricultural Practices (CROAP), a demonstration farm located a few kilometres from Pursat City, is introducing to farmers in the village of Keov Mony in Pursat a promising new method of rice farming.

Rebuilding for greater resilience against disasters

Joy.  That is what 25-year old Crisanto Lacaba feels as he looks forward to the completion of San Ignacio Culion Ecoville at the end of this year.  Finally, he and a hundred others living on Culion island in Palawan, all survivors of Super Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda in the Philippines) in 2013, will be able to move into new homes built inland.

“My family can feel secure even when the typhoons come,” he said, remembering his family’s experience when Haiyan destroyed their home situated along the coast of Barangay Osmeña, along with almost 5,000 other homes.

Charting a new course for the migration network

The word “discernment” has become all the rage within Jesuit circles following the 36th General Congregation. Fr General Arturo Sosa has even appointed a special counsellor to oversee the process of discernment and apostolic planning in the Society.  So it was fitting that the Jesuit Conference of Asia Pacific’s (JCAP) migration network examined the journey so far and charted a new course at its fourth annual meeting held in Tokyo from March 23 to 26.  A new plan for the future was called for.

New project to help boys and men flourish

International Jesuit leader Fr Arturo Sosa has expressed his support for a new Jesuit Social Services programme aimed at tackling violence and helping men and boys build better relationships with those around them.

Jesuit Social Services CEO Julie Edwards announced the new programme, The Men’s Project, at the organisation’s annual dinner on March 25, which also celebrated the organisation’s 40th anniversary.

The Men’s Project aims to help boys and men live responsible, accountable and healthy lives, and build loving relationships with those around them.

Asia Pacific Jesuits in the time of Laudato si’

Environmental research and ecological action across the Jesuit Conference of Asia Pacific (JCAP) takes many forms, as Jesuit works are only beginning to engage these concerns and still have much to learn.  Jesuits and their collaborators are moving towards greater environmental awareness and have recognised the urgent need to communicate and work with others strategically and more broadly for the sake of greater ecological accountability and sustainability.  

Standing up for life

Rebuilding lives and rekindling hope. This is the motto of the Philippine Jesuit Prison Service Foundation Inc (PJPS) based in the New Bilibid Prisons Reservation, the national penitentiary.  Like other Philippine prisons, the inmates are crammed in hot, dark and poorly ventilated cells. 

The prison compound has a capacity of about 10,000 inmates, but it is housing more than 24,000. The overcrowding means the inmates have to sleep in shifts.

Promotio Iustitiae shines spotlight on the prison ministry

The prison ministry is the focus of the latest issue of Promotio Iustitiae painting, as Social Justice and Ecology Secretary Fr Patxi Álvarez SJ said, a picture of the quiet work Jesuits and lay collaborators have been doing to serve people in prison. 

“The Jesuits, and the laypeople that they collaborate with, have a longstanding tradition of serving people in prison, dating back to the first companions of Jesus,” said Fr Álvarez.

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