The new Justice, Reconciliation and Ecology Commission in action
Indigenous in BC, Canada blocks entrance to pipeline - photo by America-aljazeera.com

The Commission had its first meeting on September 28th. Colleagues from Toronto, Montréal, Guelph and Sudbury held a virtual meeting to learn about each other and see how they can collaborate together.

Fr. Erik Oland, SJ took advantage of this meeting to announce our appointment as co-assistants to the provincial. He also invited the Commission to take the name Justice, Reconciliation and Ecology. This designation expresses his desire to see a focus on the particular challenge of reconciliation with First Nations in the Canadian context. On this issue, we do not really know what we are going to do, but we are aware that the term "Reconciliation" is controversial. It must be inhabited, named and anchored in social justice and in a decolonizing perspective, and in supporting and accompanying indigenous initiatives. The issue of ecology is now part of our mandate, but aside from the work of the Ignatius Centre in Guelph, we are not very active. There is much to be done and invented and we are well aware that the question of ecology is transversal.

All the works and Jesuits in Canada involved in the social field were present. We are twice as many participants as before and I am confident that we will be able to do more than before the creation of the new Province. In addition, the Commission had an almost equal number of Jesuits and non-Jesuits, which should strengthen collaboration between collaborators and Jesuits.

Anne-Marie Jackson gave us an excellent report on the recent meeting of the Jesuit Commission for Social and International Ministries of the Canada-United States Conference, held in Honduras in September 2018. In particular, she announced that the year 2019 will be marked by various commemoration meetings of the 50th anniversary of the International Secretariat for Justice and Ecology; these are opportunities to update and intensify the Jesuit commitment to social justice in the Society of Jesus at all levels.

For this meeting, we had the pleasure of counting on the participation of Mario Serrano, a Jesuit from the Dominican Republic, who will be the new coordinator of the social apostolate for the Jesuit Conference of Latin America beginning in March 2019. His presence in Quebec for a few weeks allowed us to prioritize a first intervention of the Commission in solidarity with the Nicaraguan people as well as with the members and collaborators of the Society of Jesus who work there.

Elisabeth Garant and Anne-Marie Jackson
Co-Assistants — Justice, Reconciliation and Ecology





Recent News

February 20, 2020 — The Jesuits of Canada have urged the Government of Canada to work "assiduously toward a peaceful resolution of the conflict now underway in the traditional territory of the Wet’suwet’en People".

February 17, 2020 — The current conflict between the Wet’suwet’en First Nations and Coastal GasLink has to do with a natural gas pipeline that Coastal Gaslink wants to build, some of which would pass through traditional Wet’suwet’en territory in the northwestern central interior of British Columbia.

February 17, 2020 — Fr. Greg Kennedy, SJ, sees spiritual conversion as an essential step in our struggle to change the beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors that lead to the abuse of our Common House and the current climate emergency.

February 10, 2020 — Whether they’re serving immigrants in Richmond, young professionals in New York, or others in settings ranging from Toronto’s inner city to the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota, Jesuit parishes are different. They share a particular sense of identity.

February 10, 2020 — “Theology is never practiced in a vacuum, but always in a specific time and place. This time and place is the modern world.” Sister Susan K. Wood, first female Academic Dean of Regis College, agreed to talk with us briefly about her career path, her projects and her vision of the Church.

February 3, 2020 — One of the important questions we as faith-filled people should be asking ourselves is: How can we live our faith with greater depth and credibility? Another way we could ask this question is through a more imaginative lens: How can we live with more contemplative attentiveness in and toward the world around us?

January 31, 2020 – Kevin Kelly, SJ co-founded the Ignatian Spirituality Project in Toronto, which offers spiritual aid to those who have experienced homelessness. "You learn really quickly that your story is not that different."

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