A call to action from the archdiocesan representatives for Development and Peace
This article, prepared by Development and Peace-Caritas Canada representatives in our archdiocese, details their new theme “Create Hope” and the initiatives they will support over the coming years. A special collection for Development and Peace will be held on the 5th Sunday of Lent, March 26th.
In the Scriptures, it is said: “Always be ready to make your defence to anyone who demands from you an accounting for the hope that is in you.” (1 Peter 3:15). If we look at the state of today’s world, it can be very difficult to have hope within us. Wars and conflict plague our human family. Politics are increasingly polarized. The gap between rich and poor widens relentlessly. The daily impacts of climate change are felt by growing numbers of people in all areas of the globe. Irreversible ecological collapse looms on the horizon. These crises can make us feel more discouraged, anxious, and powerless instead of confident with hope.
And yet, despite the critical state of the world at this point in time, there is reason for hope. In June 2022 at the Orientation Assembly, a group of 150 members, partners, and friends of Development and Peace-Caritas Canada (DPCC) gathered together to do just that. Under a banner called “Create Hope”, those gathered at the Assembly chose Create Hope as the unifying theme for the next 5 years. This was a time of real hope and inspiration for all, a time to evaluate and recommit to the work of solidarity in which DPCC has participated during the past 55 years, since its launch in 1967.
We make this choice because of the dedicated efforts of the poor and oppressed to overcome poverty and injustice. Pope Francis calls their efforts, and ours, “a proclamation of hope”. In his address at the Fourth World Meeting of Popular Movements, he added “you have the ability and the courage to create hope where there appears to be only waste and exclusion”.
The partners around the world whom we support embody this courage to create hope. You have the courage to create hope when you add your voice to that of the youth who call for urgent government action to combat the environmental crisis, you listen to indigenous peoples and their demands for justice, and you give to Development and Peace to enable communities in the Global South to take charge of their own development.
The courage to Create Hope is rooted in actions large and small. To drive away anguish and despair it is necessary to Act. Every action we take has a positive effect on us, our neighbours, our children, their descendants: our great human family. It is through our actions that we give an account for the hope that is in us.
In this first year, to “Create Hope”, we are called upon to Stand for the Land, which is the theme for Share Lent 2023. This is chosen because around the world many communities desperately want to protect their land, a source of life and hope. We can show our solidarity with those who defend their lands, waters, and forests that sustain them, as well as the culture, history, and identity that define them.
How can we do this?
1. By giving generously during Share Lent (on Solidarity Sunday, the 5th Sunday of Lent, March 26). By this we show our solidarity with communities in the Global South who are defending life and their land to ensure a future of justice, rights, dignity, respect, peace and harmony for their families.
2. By learning more about why it is important to Stand for the Land and joining in the fall action campaign, to ensure that the voices of the poorest and most marginalized people in the Global South are heard and steps taken to create change.
Check out the resources and materials that are available to be ordered for your parish for Share Lent: www.devp.org/en/order-lent/
We can also participate in other ways to show our support for the work of Development and Peace:
• Join the movement! Participate in D+P’s education, action, and fundraising campaigns. You become part of a movement of more than 11,000 members across Canada. Add your voice to those of our sisters and brothers in the Global South who are demanding justice, peace and dignity. Learn how to become a member at: www.devp.org/ or phone 1-888-234-8533
• learn more about schools committed to justice and join other schools in Canada where young people are learning about root causes of poverty, acting for justice, and raising funds for partners in the Global South. Check it out at : www.devp.org/schools
• join the Share-Year-Round monthly giving program and become a Share Year Round member.
This Lent you can double your impact by becoming an SYR monthly donor between Ash Wednesday (Feb 22) and Pentecost (May 28). Your total donation will be matched dollar for dollar.
If you would like more information about any aspect of Development and Peace, Share Lent campaigns, school programs, or have other questions, you may contact:
• Carmen Michaud, Animator for Alberta and NWT 1-780-469-1010 Ext.2180
1-844-480-3387 (toll free) Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
• Mia Klein-Gebbinck D+P Member Ph: 780-354-2108 Email: email@example.com
Thank you for your generosity and participation in Development and Peace’s work for justice and peace!