Rome - Fr Xavier Jeyaraj, SJ, new Secretary for Social Justice and Ecology
Fr Xavier Jeyaraj, SJ, from Calcutta Province, is beginning this June his term as Secretary for Social Justice and Ecology in the General Curia in Rome. He brings to the office his background working for the poor since his times as scholastic and leading a social centre, Udayani Social Action Forum, in Calcutta. He also worked in the past as Secretary of Social Action in the South Asian Conference and in the Secretariat for Social Justice and Ecology for three years. He has recently completed a PhD in Social Sciences. Read more...
Global - Canadian, Italian and Australian Provinces commit to divestment from fossil fuels
In October 2016, the Jesuits in English Canada joined other Catholic institutions around the world and announced their divestment from fossil fuel extraction from the current portfolio within five years. The Italian Jesuits are now the second national Jesuit group to have divested and thus heeded the call to care for creation of their fellow Jesuit Pope Francis. Gianfranco Matarazzo, SJ, Provincial of the Italian Province said: "I express the adhesion of the Italian province of the Society of Jesus to the divestment campaign. With this adhesion, I announce the intention to start a more detailed process about the different ways of removing our investments from fossil fuels, progressively within the next 5 years." Click here for more details. Father McCoy, SJ, Provincial of the Australian Province has committed the Australian Jesuits to joining this call to divest from fossil fuels. Read more...
Venezuela - Fe y Alegría says enough to violence
In light of the latest shifts of violence and oppression in Venezuela, General Director of Fe y Alegría in Venezuela, Fr Manuel Aristorena, SJ, has released a letter in which he says that "Venezuela has been filled with pain, suffering, anguish, violence, fear, repression and death. Yes, a lot of death, and with cruelty... It is the manner in which conflicts are confronted where a country's democracy is evidenced or denied. The excessive use of force, the characterization of demonstrations... daily violence and death, the vandalism of public or private property and the cruel treatment of detainees are unacceptable for a democratic society. We are losing lives, democracy, the country." Read more...
Europe - I Get You combats racism and xenophobia
JRS Europe released on May 31 key data analysis of 315 community building initiatives mapped as part of I Get You. The European Mapping Report shows that grassroots projects working on integration with refugees have a big impact combatting racism and xenophobia in the nine countries taking part.
Congo - New University promoting sustainable agriculture
The Université Loyola du Congo (ULC) has sought to create a centre of excellence for sustainability and food security. Instituted only last year, ULC is the world's newest Jesuit university. It has developed a multidisciplinary programme on sustainable agriculture for a diverse range of stakeholders that includes researchers, students, and local communities. Read more...
Asia Pacific - 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. Read more...
Latin America - FLACSI commemorates World Refugee Day
FLACSI, the Latin American Federation of Jesuit schools, aware of the critical situation that refugees are facing today in the continent and in the world, is organizing several activities to commemorate the World Refugee Day next June 20. Read more...
Portugal - Sharing the realities of poverty
The Ignatian Social Assembly gathered for two days in the Almada seminary upon the initiative of the Provincial in Portugal, Fr José Frazão Correia. More than 80 participants, cooperators, leaders, voluntaries and Jesuits from 26 institutions or movements, gathered for reflection, formation and sharing experience. In an environment of informality and closeness, it was possible to go deeper in the sense of «body», to grow in companionship between the participants and their mission and institutions. Read more...
Latin America - VIII Pan-Amazonian Social Forum
On May 1, Jesuit institutions from Latin America attending the VIII Pan-Amazonian Social Forum in Tarapoto, Peru, elaborated a statement about the situation the Amazonia is facing. Amazonia is shared by nine countries; it is very rich in natural resources and has been constantly exploited, but local communities are suffering from the transformation of the environment and their human rights are under threat. Read the statement...
America - REPAM Delegation makes advocacy trip to Washington, D.C.
Eighteen members of REPAM, Red Eclesial Panamazónica (in English, the Pan-Amazonian Ecclesial Network), traveled from the Amazon region to Washington, D.C., to advocate for their rights to land and clean water. The Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States was part of a host committee of Catholic organizations that sponsored the REPAM delegation's visit. To know more... REPAM has recently released a report about the violation of the right to territorial property of indigenous peoples and Amazonian communities in South America.
Cambodia - A mini-forest to offset the carbon footprint of GC 36
Across the world from Rome, a mini-forest is growing to help offset the carbon footprint of the 36th General Congregation (GC 36). As the 215 delegates from 62 countries met in the aula of GC 36 last October, members of Jesuit Service Cambodia at Banteay Prieb, a Jesuit vocational school for persons with disabilities, planted 400 seedlings of native hardwood trees, including several locally endangered species, on one-hectare of land owned by the Jesuits near the school. They received a contribution for the mini-forest from the members of GC 36. To know more...
USA - Society of Jesus apologizes for Slaveholding at Georgetown University
"Today the Society of Jesus, which helped to establish Georgetown University and whose leaders enslaved and mercilessly sold your ancestors, stands before you to say: We have greatly sinned, in our thoughts and in our words, in what we have done and in what we have failed to do," Father Timothy Kesicki, SJ, said in public apology today to nearly 100 descendants of slaves gathered at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. "The Society of Jesus prays with you today because we have greatly sinned, and because we are profoundly sorry." Read more...