Friday, July 10, 2015

Pope Francis' Address to Second World Meeting of the Popular Movements

Pope Francis spoke on  Thursday  8 July 2015 at the World Meeting of Popular Movements, taking place in Santa Cruz, Bolivia.

The World Meeting of Popular Movements, organized in collaboration with Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace and the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, brings together delegates from popular movements from around the world.
Quotable Quotes from the Speech

We want change in our lives, in our neighborhoods, in our everyday reality. We want a change which can affect the entire world, since global interdependence calls for global answers to local problems. The globalization of hope, a hope which springs up from peoples and takes root among the poor, must replace the globalization of exclusion and indifference!

Time, my brothers and sisters, seems to be running out; we are not yet tearing one another apart, but we are tearing apart our common home. Today, the scientific community realizes what the poor have long told us: harm, perhaps irreversible harm, is being done to the ecosystem. The earth, entire peoples and individual persons are being brutally punished. And behind all this pain, death and destruction there is the stench of what Basil of Caesarea called “the dung of the devil”. An unfettered pursuit of money rules. The service of the common good is left behind. Once capital becomes an idol and guides people’s decisions, once greed for money presides over the entire socioeconomic system, it ruins society, it condemns and enslaves men and women, it destroys human fraternity, it sets people against one another and, as we clearly see, it even puts at risk our common home.

As members of popular movements, you carry out your work inspired by fraternal love, which you show in opposing social injustice. When we look into the eyes of the suffering, when we see the faces of the endangered campesino, the poor laborer, the downtrodden native, the homeless family, the persecuted migrant, the unemployed young person, the exploited child, the mother who lost her child in a shootout because the barrio was occupied by drugdealers, the father who lost his daughter to enslavement…. when we think of all those names and faces, our hearts break because of so much sorrow and pain.  And we are deeply moved…. We are moved because “we have seen and heard” not a cold statistic but the pain of a suffering humanity, our own pain, our own flesh. This is something quite different than abstract theorizing or eloquent indignation. It moves us; it makes us attentive to others in an effort to move forward together. That emotion which turns into community action is not something which can be understood by reason alone: it has a surplus of meaning which only peoples understand, and it gives a special feel to genuine popular movements.

The Church cannot and must not remain aloof from this process in her proclamation of the Gospel. Many priests and pastoral workers carry out an enormous work of accompanying and promoting the excluded throughout the world, alongside cooperatives, favouring businesses, providing housing, working generously in the fields of health, sports and education. I am convinced that respectful cooperation with the popular movements can revitalize these efforts and strengthen processes of change.

Here I wish to bring up an important issue. Some may rightly say, “When the Pope speaks of colonialism, he overlooks certain actions of the Church”. I say this to you with regret: many grave sins were committed against the native peoples of America in the name of God. My predecessors acknowledged this, CELAM has said it, and I too wish to say it. Like Saint John Paul II, I ask that the Church “kneel before God and implore forgiveness for the past and present sins of her sons and daughters”.[6] I would also say, and here I wish to be quite clear, as was Saint John Paul II: I humbly ask forgiveness, not only for the offenses of the Church herself, but also for crimes committed against the native peoples during the so-called conquest of America.

In conclusion, I would like to repeat: the future of humanity does not lie solely in the hands of great leaders, the great powers and the elites. It is fundamentally in the hands of peoples and in their ability to organize. It is in their hands, which can guide with humility and conviction this process of change. I am with you. Let us together say from the heart: no family without lodging, no rural worker without land, no laborer without rights, no people without sovereignty, no individual without dignity, no child without childhood, no young person without a future, no elderly person without a venerable old age. Keep up your struggle and, please, take great care of Mother Earth.

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

The Jihad of Jesus Brisbane Launch


Over the last few years I've been involved in some meaningful Christian-Muslim dialogue. And out of those conversations I have published two well-received books - one was on the Bismillah, in the Qur'an, celebrating the grace of God and the other was on Isa, reflecting on the grace of God celebrated in the life of Jesus according to the views common to the Qur'an and the Gospels.

Given continued distressing references to 'jihad' in newspaper, radio and tv headlines some of my friends, both Christian and Muslim, suggested I write a book about Jesus and 'jihad' and call it The Jihad of Jesus. It was hoped the provocative title would get a lot of attention, and we could introduce Christians and Muslims to a Qur'anic reconstruction of the concept of 'jihad' in the light of the radical practical nonviolence of Jesus.

I have not written this book as an expert. I am not. I have not written this book as a specialist. I am not. I have simply written this book in conversation with Muslim friends, seeking to find a way we can struggle for love and justice that is true to the best in our faith traditions. (Dave Andrews)


Monday, July 06, 2015

“Along the Camino” Brisbane Event

Friday July 17th, 7.30pm. The Aspinall Centre, 
4 Klumpp Road, Upper Mt Gravatt. 



An 80 minute audio-visual presentation by Peter Kearney about a 800 km walk through northern Spain along an ancient pilgrimage path to the burial place of St. James the Apostle. Photos, music and live commentary by Peter who has walked the Camino. Beautiful landscapes, medieval villages, useful information. Q&A session at conclusion. $10/$8 concession pp at door.

 Registration essential preferably via email to Peter Kearney: camino@peterkearneysongs.com.au Please specify event location 'Upper Mt Gravatt' and number of seats needed. 
Or sms 0425 328 185. Or at Parish Office. 07 3849 7158

Fr. Dhya Aziz ofm. released Safely

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I ask my sisters and brothers of faith, Christian and Muslim to pray for the  Fr. Dhya Aziz ofm. 

He was born at Mosul, the ancient Niniveh, in Iraq, on 10 January 1974. After some studies at the Medical Institute of his city, he embraced religious life and after the novitiate at Ain Karem he made his first profession of the religious vows on 1 April 2002. 

In 2003 he transferred to Egypt, where he remained for many years. In 2010 he came back into the Custody and was sent to Amman. Subsequently he was transferred to Syria, at Lattakia

He then rendered himself voluntarily willing to assist the community of Yacoubieh, in the region of the Orontes (province of Idlib, district of Jisr al-Chougour), which has become particularly dangerous since it fell under the control of Jahbar al-Nusra.

The Custody of the Holy Land announced that the Fr. Dhiya Azziz has been liberated.

The Custody had had no news of the Fr. Dihya since Saturday, July 4, in the late afternoon.


Conflicting news had nevertheless led people to believe that he had been taken by jihadists affiliated to Al-Nusra Jabhat, which administers the emirate in the sector.

This group has denied any involvement in his kidnapping and allegedly led the police investigation in neighboring villages which led to his liberation.

Fr. Dhiya was allegedly abducted by another group jihadists eager to profit on his release. In the region, there are a plethora of groups that operate with varied interests.

He was allegedly treated well during his kidnapping.

The Custody of the Holy Land thanks those around the world who prayed for a successful outcome to this trial that Fr. Dhiya endured, as well as the faithful of Yacoubieh, of which he is the pastor, his religious family and his family in Iraq.

The Custody does not forget that other religious are still missing in Syria and it invites everyone to continue praying for peace in this country. 


The Custody of the Holy Land