Convened by the General Service of Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation the following Oblates met in Rome on October 20-25th 2009.
The Regional Representatives were the following: Africa-Madagascar: Singini NACIDZE and Prosper NDJOLI; Asia-Oceania: Rohan SILVA and Joseph GOMES; Canada-United States: Walter BUTOR and Paul FEELEY; Latin America: Heinner PAUCAR and Guido ACOSTA; Europe: Tomas VYHNALEK and Kevin MCLAUGHLIN.
Other participants were: the OMI JPIC Committee Executive Board: Oswald FIRTH (Portfolio Holder), Luis Ignacio Rois (General Councillor), Camille PICHÉ (Director); and Daniel LEBLANC (United Nations, New York), Seamus FINN (DC-USA Office), Jeevendra PAUL (Grant Director), Francisco O`Conair (Facilitator).
The JPIC Vision/Mission Statement as well as “Essentials for JPIC Animation” will be posted on our website: www.omi-jpic.org. Working groups are preparing a document to be presented to the Chapter Commission.
We affirmed that one of the biggest challenges we face today is to live in right relationship among ourselves, with all peoples and with the whole of creation in a sustainable and reverent manner. That statement as well as the reaffirmation of all JPIC ministries that Oblates are involved in at many different levels guided us in setting the following priorities:
Ecological and economic sustainability
- Committed to the cause of the poor in an unequal, unjust and devastating world, we Oblates understand that economic and ecological sustainability means a just and respectful relationship between humanity and creation that safeguards the earth, all its inhabitants and resources for future generations;
- Recognizing that the actual social, political, economic and cultural structures have caused a breakdown in the relationship that must exist between all elements of nature, including human beings;
- Recognizing also that the actual economic system is creating an ever growing division between rich and poor both at the inter-personal level and between nations;
- We recommend that we work towards a style of life that will assure an integral relationship between humanity and nature; the protection of the ecology; a sustainable economy; ethical and responsible investments.
As Oblates with a mission to work with the most abandoned in whatever form or situation, we affirm that every person is created in the image and likeness of God. We are committed to work especially in promoting the rights of all people, as individuals and as communities, with special emphasis on Indigenous Peoples and migrants. All people should be respected and have access to basic human needs as well as enjoy the free exercise of civic, political and cultural rights, and a healthy community to live in.
A Commitment to Reconciliation
1. Identifying and acknowledging the nature of the historical divisions and animosity which exists between regions, countries, ethnic and racial groups, and
2. Exploring opportunities and learning tools and processes that can make a positive contribution to the peacemaking process, our commitment to reconciliation includes the following actions:
- That specific training in the work of conflict resolution and reconciliation at the social and political levels, for instance between ethnic and racial groups, be included in the initial and ongoing formation curriculum.
- That the training also include the rupture that has been identified and recognized between humankind and the earth in various and sundry situations and contexts.
- That the General Council create a team of Oblates and laity that could be assembled to be a resource for Oblates and others for the work of reconciliation especially in zones of conflict where Oblates are working.
An emphasis on Education and Formation
- We consider the promotion of basic literacy and education to be fundamental in involving people in their search for greater dignity and opportunities.
- We have reaffirmed the priority of JPIC in many General Chapters and declared in our Constitutions and Rules that “action on behalf of Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation is an integral part of evangelization.” We believe that preparation and updating for this dimension of our mission should be included in all of our formation programs. This includes the different stages of initial formation, ongoing formation and leadership training programs that are planned at different levels of the congregation.
- We also consider that people deserve the right to assume responsibility along with Oblates as an integral part of our mission. Catholic Social teaching and JPIC training needs to be an integral part of formation programs for the laity.