USA - Call for repair of broken Juvenile Justice System
A letter to the House of Representatives signed on behalf of the Society by Tim Kesicki, Greg Boyle, Michael Kennedy and Fred Kammer conveys support for the bi-partisan Youth Prison Reduction through Opportunities, Mentoring, Intervention, Support and Education (PROMISE) Act. Citing the experience of Jesuit ministries, which work with youth, they convey the power of innovative local solutions to change lives and mitigate root causes of violence. Click for letter...
Africa - AJAN meeting in Nairobi 26-29 July
A meeting of AJAN took place in Nairobi from 26 to 29 July and was attended by 50 Jesuits and co-workers involved in AIDS ministry, in 14 countries across sub-Saharan Africa. An external evaluator of AJAN, Ochieng Oloo, facilitated the discussion. Asking participants what they think AJAN is, Ochieng summarized their answers in the simplest and most inclusive possible way: "AJAN is found where AIDS and Jesuits meet." To read more...
USA - Anti-poverty advocacy
Joining together with 160 other faith, charitable, and civil rights organizations, the Jesuit Conference urges Congress to save critical provisions of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Child Tax Credit (CTC) before they expire. According to the letter, these programs "are among the nation's strongest tools to help working families escape poverty and achieve greater self-sufficiency." The letter maintains that low wage workers and families (up to 50 million Americans, including 25 million children) should not be left behind in the event the tax credits expire. Click here to read the letter...
Europe - President's call to support refugees
Fr. John Dardis, as President of the Conference of European Provincials, has sent a letter to Major Superiors in Europe, Jesuits and friends about the current Refugee crisis in Europe. Because of the dimensions of the crisis, the letter makes a call to respond beyond the capacities of JRS in Europe, asking Jesuits and their institutions to provide their help according to their possibilities. It gives very concrete examples of commitment. To read the letter...
Asia Pacific - JCAP social apostolate meeting in Kuala Lumpur
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the seminal Decree 4 of the 32nd General Congregation, which prompted an outpouring of social action among Jesuits and lay collaborators against the oppression and poverty that engulfed much of Asia Pacific at that time. Asia Pacific is a very different place now, although structures of injustice remain in various forms. The call to live a faith that does justice still rings true, therefore, the Jesuit Conference of Asia Pacific organised a meeting in Kuala Lumpur from 3 to 7 August to reflect on the promotion of justice as an absolute requirement in the mission of the Society of Jesus. Read more...
Mexico - Report on the situation faced by migrants
A network of organizations defending the rights of migrants, of which the Jesuit Service to Migrants is one of the members, has recently presented the report "Invisible migrants, flagrant violence" where they analyze the situation of human rights of migrants in transit through Mexico. They have compiled data from 14 shelters on this rout. To read the news and the report...
Central America - Migrants week, 1-6 September
On September 1-6 in Central America, Mexico and Caribe, Jesuits have celebrated the Migrants Week. This year the campaign arrives under an expression of Pope Francis in his letter on migration: "A Church without borders, mother of all". They want to refer to the numerous walls that migrants are facing: physical, legal, cultural (stereotypes and prejudices), moral ones... that build up an atmosphere of hostility. Therefore, they commit to promote a culture of hospitality, because hospitality breaks walls. To read more...
Global - New newsletter from Edujesuit and from Prison ministry networks
In the last month both Edujesuit and Prison Ministry global networks have launched their newsletters. They provide information about recent news in both areas, and they give voice to people engaged in education and prison ministries through interviews. The newsletters can already be found in their respective webpages. Click here to see the Edujesuit newsletter. Click here to see the newsletter from the Prison ministry network.
Asia Pacific - JCAP Provincials' statement on Laudato Si'
Provincials of Asia Pacific gathered in Cambodia in July 2015 made a statement promoting the recently launched Papal Encyclical Laudato Si', asking Jesuits for personal conversion and communities to embark on a discernment toward making concrete changes in their lifestyle. They also animated schools and social media institutions to promote education towards the "ecological citizenship" Pope Francis envisions. They hope that the Encyclical will help Jesuits experience a change of heart and focus on the needs of the poor. To read Provincials' statement...
Rome - Publication of Encyclical Laudato Si'
The long awaited Encyclical of Pope Francis, Laudato Si' (Be Praised), on the Care for our Common Home, was published during the month of June. The Encyclical is a call to unity-unity in prayer for the environment and for the poor, in the conversion of our hearts and our lifestyles to respect and love everyone and everything given to us by God. On this occasion, Ecojesuit has put up a guidance map to the different parts of the environment encyclical of Pope Francis.
Global - Jesuit universities meet in Melbourne 2015
Following the previous meeting in Mexico 2010, Jesuit Universities from all over the world gather from 8th to 10th of July in Melbourne. The title of the meeting was "Expanding the Jesuit Higher Education Network: Collaborations for Social Justice". They shared several initiatives already active such as higher education for the marginalized, the promotion of social entrepreneurship, a living text on ecology for the use in the universities, etc. They also prepared a video highlighting the contents of the document "Promotion of justice in the universities of the Society", that appeared months ago as Promotio Iustitiae 116.
Global - New e-bulletin from Edujesuit
Edujesuit has launched a new bulletin with the most recent news and editorials. It covers questions such as proposals for financing education for the meeting in Addis Abeba; the need for quality education as a key element in the Education international agenda; the required tax reform to defend human rights. It also includes some voices coming from Syrian refugees in Lebanon and from refugees in Malawi.
Latin America -Social Apostolate meeting in Guayaquil
More than 50 Jesuits and collaborators recently participated in a meeting of Delegates for the Social Apostolate and Directors of Social Centres of the Latin American provinces in Guayaquil, Ecuador. Three main topics were covered. First, spirituality of social action. Second, the need and challenge for finding ways of having greater public and political impact at various levels of society. And third, the urgency of letting "the youth", their reality, their challenges, their capabilities and proposals come through the doors and windows of our apostolic works as true collaborators and just not as the object of our Mission.
Portugal - Third edition of Bgreen, ecological film festival
This project aims to appeal to a strengthened environmental awareness and sustainability, instilling respect for the surrounding nature. The 3rd edition was characterized by the internationalization of the initiative, which allowed for the participation of many young Europeans. Throughout the gala, 22 pre-selected videos from Spain, Norway and Portugal were shown. This year's award was won by a spot named "Lady Lancelot", produced by a group of students from the Norwegian school Vardafjell. To know more about the gala, click here.
Latin America - Meeting of organizations looking for missing migrants
Committees of migrants' relatives, shelters, human rights and solidarity organizations from Central America, Mexico and the US met in Mexico DF from 9th to 11th of June to face one of the most painful violations of human rights migrants and their families may suffer: disappearance. The meeting was convened by the Servicio Jesuita al migrante in Mexico and members of the Red Jesuita con migrantes from Central America also took part in it. Read more...
Global - Catholic universities commitment for the environment
Catholic universities are expressing their commitment for the environment in a declaration recently launched. They express their commitment "to work regionally and globally through all the means available to and appropriate for our colleges and universities as institutions of higher learning, to study, promote, and act on the ideals and vision of integral ecology laid out by Pope Francis". You can click here to read and sign up the declaration.
India - Democracy & secularism under Modi
Last June saw the release of the report "365 days - democracy and secularism under the Modi regime". This report is an attempt to document the endangered democratic rights of citizens and secular values enshrined in the Constitution of India. The purpose of the document is to make the damage suffered visible. The report has been possible due to the cooperation of many individuals and fraternal organizations working in various states. The Indian Social Institute in Delhi has contributed to spread this document. Cedric Prakash SJ is one of the authors.
Global - European Parliament voting against the use of conflict minerals
An EU wide campaign has resulted in the European Parliament voting in favour of mandatory measures to eradicate the presence of conflict minerals in the supply chain. Among the organizations involved in this battle were some European Jesuit organisations, such as Alboan, Jesuiten Mission and Jesuit Missions. This has been a very important achievement, since, this regulation could benefit thousands of poor people in some of the most fragile and conflict-ridden countries in the developing world. Latin America - Spiritual walk and meeting of indigenous people
Members of the Jesuit Indigenous network in Latin America participated in the Spiritual walk and meeting of indigenous people that brought them from El Salvador to Mexico denouncing the environmental damages they are suffering and the discrimination they are exposed to in their own countries. They finished with a declaration where they demanded governments, as well as social and religious groups, to defend their rights.
USA - Commentary on Washington Post by Fr Timothy Kesicki
On the beatification of Archbishop Oscar Romero on 23rd May 2015, Fr Timothy Kesicki, President of the Conference of US and Canada, wrote an article on the Washington Post in which he reflects on the situation in Central America today. Fr Kesicki invites the American government to address the root causes of migration and to provide direct assistance that builds the capacity to address humanitarian need, instead of funding the militarization of the borders between the U.S. and Central America.