NJPN eBulletin 13th September 2020

An interesting mix of J & P issues and events, including the Birmingham J & P Assembly

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NJPN Open Networking Meeting

Via Zoom

Saturday 19 September 2020

10.30am – 4.00pm

Tickets available from Eventbrite

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Dear Friends,

We hope that you have had a welcome break over the last few weeks, and pray that any children and young people in your family are now safely back at school, college and University (or at least soon will be). Obviously, a fair amount has happened over the last few weeks. We are now celebrating the Season of Creation, and sadly, mourning the loss of yet another young life of a refugee, taken by the sea some weeks ago. Carry on reading below about various ways in which you can engage.

Strange times are continuing with various local lockdowns being imposed, and the potential threat that again we may have to have a national lockdown. Just as we are getting used to the new normal.

This is the last call for the NJPN Networking Day, which will take place via Zoom next Saturday, 19th September, from 10.30am until 4pm. Tickets available from Eventbrite
Also, for those of you who either attended our NJPN Mini-Conference and want to re-listen, or would have liked to have attended but couldn’t, you can watch the conference on YouTube here.

Coming up soon is the Birmingham Justice and Peace Commission’s Online Assembly taking place between the 28th September and the 4th October. ‘The Climate Emergency: – Listening and responding to the ‘Cry of the Earth and the Cry of the Poor’ Details are available in the Events section of this e-bulletin.

Don’t forget, if you have something you particularly want shared in this e-bulletin, send it to ebulletin@justice-and-peace.org.uk.

All being well, many of us will meet virtually at next weekend’s Networking Day, and failing that the next edition of this e-bulletin will be out in two weeks time.

Keep safe and well,

Editor

Please note we are still using a temporary postal address due to the closure of the Eccleston Square office:

Geoff Thompson, NJPN, c/o CAFOD Lancaster Volunteer Centre, St Walburge’s Centre, St Walburge’s Gardens, Preston PR2 2QJ.

You can still use the same phone number.

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E-Bulletin Contents: –

***ACTION OF THE WEEK***

News and Comment

  1. Season of Creation
  2. Refugees
  3. NJPN columns in the Universe
  4. South Africa and child-headed families
  5. Reports from DR Congo
  6. Can international trade ever be anti-racist?
  7. Rescued teen bride receiving death threats.
  8. Economy must place people above ‘idols of finance’
Newsletters9. Operation Noah August 2020
10. Birmingham Diocese J & P Commission
11. Green Christian
12. Lancaster Faith and Justice Commission
13. Biofuelwatch
14. Trade Matters – magazine for Traidcraft
15. Salesian Link
16. Ecumenical Commission for Corporate Responsibility
17. Joint Public Issues Team

Events

18 Birmingham Justice and Peace Assembly
19‘We Are Many’ – a film for Peace Sunday
20World Week for Peace in Palestine and Israel
21. Catholic Investment for An Integral Ecology
22Zambia and Debt (a CAFOD presentation)
23Boiling Point: a COP26 Coalition Speaker Series
24. Student Rally for Palestine.
25Mission, Theology and Ministry for the Margins
26. Christian CND Conference and AGM
27. Take One Action

28. International Resistance to Mining Film Festival

Actions and Appeals

29. Boycott Kirin Ichiban Lager
30. Safe and Legal Routes Now
31. Don’t back down on Big Tech Tax

E-Petitions

32. Give NHS staff the right to stay in the UK

The Last Word

33. Calling all who knit/crochet!

 
***ACTION OF THE WEEK***
 

World Week for Peace in Palestine and Israel

Theme: “Creative Solidarity in Common Fragility.”

 
 
People of faith all over the world are encouraged to demonstrate the power of prayer with action which includes the International Day of Peace on 21 September.
Pax Christi, along the World Council of Churches, have some activities that you can join in with. throughout this week.

In this era of extreme fragility, creative solidarity is a sign of hope that, through the power of prayer and common action, we can make the restoration of peace and justice in the Holy Land both possible and a lived reality for all people of the region.

NEWS AND COMMENT

1. The Season of Creation

a) This year, the theme for the Season of Creation is ‘Jubilee for the Earth’. We are invited to “consider the integral relationship between rest for the Earth and ecological, economic, social and political ways of living.”

In an interesting interview for the World Council of Churches, Athena Peralta, their Programme Director for Economic and Ecological Justice talks about the theme and how it inspires her. Follow the article here.

b) Last weekend, many Churches across Britain and Ireland marked the annual season of Creationtide with Climate Sunday and climate-focused services. With the climate crisis accelerating and greater public support for a green recovery post COVID-19, there has never been a more crucial time for UK churches to come together to pray and act on the climate crisis. Over 700 churches registered before the year-long initiative had begun. Independent Catholic News gives a detailed account here.

c) Staying on the subject of climate change, but linking the problems of our earth in with #blacklivesmatter, Jo Musker-Sherwood, founder and director of Hope for the Future, writes about race, climate, and learning from her colonial ancestors. (first published on Climate Emergence).
A paragraph here:-
‘I’m also looking inwards and seeing where colonialism and racism might still hold a grip on my mindset and my life. That’s where I am seeing the connection with my every day choices- and with climate change- as I continue operating within a system ensnared by racism.
The clothes I buy, the food I eat, the holidays I take. They are subsidised by many people of colour.
And when I engage in overconsumption I know that climate change disproportionately effects people of colour. Thousands, millions of lives, that matter.
Yet, most days, I find ways to live with that knowledge, because change feels insurmountable.’

Those few words sum up beautifully how many of us feel – what difference will our little effort make. We have to believe that ‘every little helps,’ otherwise we are heading for an environmental disaster. We all need to do our bit. The full, thought-provoking, piece of writing is available to read here.

d) Finally, Judith Allinson from Green Christian, in their recent newsletter, shared the headline “68% of world’s animal populations lost in the the last 50 years.”
Judith continues “It is only 2 years ago that I was quoting the Living Planet Report 2018 saying that 60 percent of wild animal populations have been lost. Now – within 2 years – WWF are reporting that 68 percent have been lost. — Less than 1/3 of the animals in 1970 are left.—
And the decrease shows no sign of stopping.”
Pick up the WWF Living Planet Report 2020 through Green Christian here.

2. Refugees and Migrants

a) “On the palm of fate we walk, and don’t know what’s written.” These words were written in Arabic back in June by 28 year old Abdulfatah Hamdallah. (the authorities originally thought he was 16). Sadly, on August the 19th, he became yet another migrant statistic when he was found washed up on a beach in Calais. He had been trying to cross the Channel in a dinghy, using shovels for oars. More details on this particular case are available from the BBC.
Also, Independent Catholic News references JRS and Safe Passage in their article here.
Further down this e-bulletin, you will find ways that you can get involved in our Actions and Appeals section.

b) Save the Children, in a new report, highlights the plight of unaccompanied minors to Europe. The report shows that more than 200,000 unaccompanied foreign minors arrived in Europe in the last 5 years to seek asylum, with many facing obstacles to security and protection, and in the process of travelling here around 700 children including infants have died in the process. For more details click here.

3. NJPN Columns in The Universe

Angela Waterhouse – ‘How one parish celebrated the Season of Creation last year’

Angela writes about how St. Edmund’s, Abingdon, celebrated last year’s Season of Creation.

Fr. Rob Esdaile – Testing our Assumptions

Fr. Rob talks about the Feast of the Assumption

Thanks to our friends at The Universe for their support. If you would like to help them by taking out a subscription; 3 months at £22 or 12 months at £80, click on this link.

4. South Africa: Heart-Rending Plight of Child-Headed Families

“Our father used to come home once around Christmas holidays. He would buy us some food, which lasts about two weeks, the time he spends with us. Then he leaves us again,” Nosipho says in the report and adds in reference to their dad, ”We finish the last bites of the food he bought by the time he goes away and starve again for the whole year.”
Mill Hill Missionaries have brought to our attention news reported by ACI Africa concerning a study that the Justice and Peace Commission in Durban have published highlighting the plight of child-headed families in the Church’s jurisdiction.
This report shows that these children are often ignored by society, due to their living conditions, with the conclusion at the end that affluent parishes are visited to seek support to help the poor.
Details through the Mill Hill article here.

5. Two different aspects of life in DR Congo

a) This is what we die for: Child labour in the cobalt mines of DR Congo

The plight of children is again highlighted, this time in the Democratic Republic of Congo. It is reported that at least 40,000 children are involved in mining for cobalt, a rare metal used in lithium ion batteries, and in the last year at least 80 fatalities have been reported. Through Mill Hill Missionaries, watch this video produced by Amnesty International explaining the exploitation of this very poor area for the financial gain of big business.

b) Facing the challenges of Covid-19 and Conflict in DR Congo

Trócaire’s Fionnuala Flynn reports from a country that is experiencing a spike in COVID-19 cases in a year where hundreds of thousands of people have had to flee their homes due to ongoing conflict.
DR Congo is in the bottom ten poorest countries in the world. It is the second most food-insecure country in the world and there are 5 million people living in the country who have fled conflict. It has had to deal with devastating outbreaks of ebola and measles in recent years.
Now, it is facing the challenge of COVID-19. Read about the crisis there, and how Trocaire is helping.

6. Can international trade ever be anti-racist?

Charlotte Timson, Traidcraft Exchange’s CEO writes: –

A Confession –
for years, I’ve felt uncomfortable working in international development.
When I lived in Malawi, I first witnessed how international charities could often dominate civil society, pushing out the voices of local organisations and communities and capturing large proportions of project budgets for themselves.
I couldn’t articulate clearly back then that racism was part of the problem. It seems so obvious now.

In her blog, Charlotte then goes onto link the Slave Trade with todays working conditions for many workers in the global South. Makes very interesting reading, and at the end she asks that if you have any ideas as to how to meet the challenge of racism in trade to get in touch. Charlotte’s blog is available here.

7. Rescued teen bride receives death threats

One of the kidnapped teenage Christian girls that we have previously reported on, 14 year old Maira Shahbaz, has managed to escape from her ‘husband.’ Maira and her family have gone on the run and their lawyer, Ms Shafique said she had successfully appealed to the Rawalpindi bench of the Lahore High Court for police protection to be put in place pending the resolution of the case. More details on the case are available from Aid to the Church in Need.

8. Pope Francis – ‘Economy must place people above ‘idols of finance.’

As a general concept, economics should become “the expression of a care and concern that does not exclude but seeks to include, that does not demean but seeks to uplift and give life,” the pope said on the 4th September in a message to participants at an international forum sponsored by the “European House — Ambrosetti,” an economic think tank based in Rome.
Economics should be an expression of “care and concern that refuses to sacrifice human dignity to the idols of finance, that does not give rise to violence and inequality and that uses financial resources not to dominate but to serve,” he said. “Genuine profit comes from treasures accessible to all.”
More details are available from America Magazine.

NEWSLETTERS – click on the link to access the newsletter you are interested in

9. Operation Noah August 2020

10. Latest News from the Birmingham Justice and Peace Commission

Please follow this link to their page, which will replace the monthly mini-newsletter.

11. Green Christian Newsletter

Green Christian have provided last week’s newsletter to give you a taste of what you can expect if you sign up for regular updates. Click here.

12. Lancaster Faith and Justice Commission
September 2020 Newsletter

13. Biofuelwatch September 2020 Newsletter

14. Trade Matters – September magazine for supporters of Traidcraft

15. Salesian Link – Justice and Peace Newsletter
September 2020

16. Ecumenical Council for Corporate Responsibility –
August 2020 Newsletter

17. Joint Public Issues Team
August 2020 Newsletter

EVENTS

18. Birmingham Justice and Peace Assembly 2020


Full details of the Assembly, and a link to book are available here

19. Film for Peace Sunday (being shown on Monday 21st September)

‘We Are Many’

Brought to you by Fellowship of Reconciliation, this transatlantic film screening followed by a Q & A session, shows footage of 15 February 2003, the day the world stood up for peace. This one day of protest was potentially the biggest day of protest the globe has ever seen. Relive the memories if you were there (either in London or Glasgow) and learn more about the day if you were not.
The cost to watch the film is £9.99, of which 40% will go back to Fellowship of Reconciliation. It does say that the film-screening is at 1am UK time. Don’t panic, though, as your ticket enables you to watch the film at the time of your choosing! Book here.

20. World Week for Peace in Palestine and Israel

Under the theme “Creative Solidarity in Common Fragility,” people of faith all over the world are encouraged to demonstrate the power of prayer during the World Week for Peace in Palestine and Israel. This special week of prayer coupled with action is annually held 13 – 21 September and includes the International Day of Peace on 21 September.
This year’s theme, chosen during an era of extreme fragility, lifts up creative solidarity as a sign of hope that, through the power of prayer and common action, people across the world can make the restoration of peace and justice in the Holy Land both possible and a lived reality or all people of the region. Further information is available from the World Council of Churches.

There will be an online Prayer Service live this Monday, the 14th September at 8.30am Central European Time (7.30am UK time) and it will feature contributions from various Churches in the Holy Land. To participate, click here.

21. Webinar Series – Catholic Investment for an Integral Ecology

This autumn, join us for a webinar series on fossil fuel divestment and impact investing.
The webinars will offer an opportunity to find out how Catholic organisations can use their investments to accelerate the clean energy transition and support a green recovery from Covid-19.
The webinar series is sponsored by Operation Noah, Catholic Impact Investing Collective, the Global Catholic Climate Movement, CAFOD, Trocaire, Conference of Religious, Association of Provincial Bursars, National Justice & Peace Network and Justice and Peace Scotland.
Part 1 – Tuesday 22nd September 4pm – 5.30pm – Fossil Fuel Divestment: Accelerating the clean energy transition. For more details and to book your place, click here.

22. CAFOD: Stories from our Partners: Zambia and Debt

Taking place on Thursday 17th September from 6pm until 7pm, you can hear direct from the local experts at Caritas Zambia on a growing debt crisis and how it affects their communities.
Click here to join the event.

23. Boiling Point: a COP26 Coalition Speaker Series

The Boiling Point series will answer everything you wanted to know about climate change negotiations but were too afraid to ask.
In this series of six one hour-long webinars you will have a chance to learn the basics of international climate change politics and the infamous COP, or “Conference of the Parties,” ahead of the COP26, scheduled to be held in Glasgow in November 2021.
Expert speakers will share their knowledge of the history and process of the talks as well as the major issues and main players. You will learn about the real “rules of the game” and have a chance to ask questions big and small of activists, policy analysts and journalists with years of experience working behind the scenes on major summits. Register here.

24. Student Rally for Palestine

The Palestine Solidarity Campaign Youth and Student Committee has just launched two exciting events; a Student Rally for Palestine taking place on the 28th September at 6pm and a Digital Campaigning Workshop taking place on the 30th September at 6pm. This will kick start your activity for the upcoming year. Will you join us?

25. Mission, Theology and Ministry for the Margins

Leeds School of Theology are pleased to partner with Lighthouse West Yorkshire in facilitating a dynamic learning community which will serve Christians already working alongside the marginalised or who have a heart to pioneer in this area. Lighthouse is a fresh expression of church that serves adults with multiple and complex needs including poverty, mental health, homelessness, trauma and addiction.
The course begins on the 21st September and can either be in-person in Leeds, or via Zoom nationwide. For more details go to the Leeds School of Theology website.

26. Christian CND Conference and AGM

Taking place online on Saturday 3rd October, please register via Eventbrite.

27. Take One Action

The UK’s leading global change film festival is going online. This September, you can see some of the most inspiring, challenging and urgent international cinema exploring social and environmental justice from the comfort of your living room.
For many years, Global Justice Now has been part of the Take One Action film festival screened in Scottish cinemas each September. But with the film festival going online this year, film lovers and global justice activists right across the UK can also watch great cinema and join live Q&As, audience discussions and workshops. See the full programme here.

On the final weekend of the film festival there will be an online workshop: Holding corporations to account, which will bring together issues explored by many of the films – and look at how power is used and abused by big business around the world. ‘Holding corporations to account’ will feature international campaigners, including Global Justice Now’s Dorothy Guerrero. Register here.

28. International Resistance to Mining Film Festival
21st – 28th September

In solidarity with the Black Lives Matter Movement, Indigenous activists and mining affected communities across the globe, London Mining Network presents the International Resistance to Mining Film Festival.
This programme of highly acclaimed documentary films shines a light on the colonial legacy of international extractivism and the lives it affects. From Bouganville to South Africa, Australia to Colombia, these true stories remind us of the human cost of mining as well as the inspiring acts of resistance that it inspires.
Registration is free, but please register for each individual film you would like to attend the streaming of. Streaming will take place on the Facebook Live platform.

ACTIONS/APPEALS

29. Boycott Kirin Ichiban!

You might have seen Kirin Ichiban lager on sale in bars, pubs and supermarkets. Kirin lager is made by a Japanese company, which operates all over the world.
In Burma, Kirin are in two joint venture breweries with the Burmese military, earning the Burmese military tens of millions of dollars a year in profits. Kirin are funding a military which rapes children and throws babies into burning homes.
Kirin have as their business partner a military which is facing charges of genocide at the International Court of Justice and is being investigated by the International Criminal Court for crimes against humanity.
Tell Kirin to stop doing business with the Burmese military. Kirin must stop funding genocide.
Tell Kirin you will boycott Kirin Ichiban until they completely cut their ties to the Burmese military.
Email Kirin today.

30. Safe and Legal Routes Now

Many of us have been horrified by this summer’s images of people making harrowing journeys across the English Channel to seek safety in the UK. Many will also have been shocked by the government’s response. The fact remains that it is nearly impossible to claim asylum in the UK without resorting to dangerous journeys like these ones, because of the lack of safe and legal routes by which to reach the UK in the first place.
People seeking protection here need safe and legal routes, now, to prevent further tragedy at the UK’s borders. Take action now by writing to your MP.

31. Don’t back down on the Big Tech Tax

Corporate lobbyists are trying to use the US trade deal to stop Big Tech being regulated.
The digital giants like Facebook, Amazon and Google are the robber barons of our age. They don’t play by the rules the rest of us abide by, which means they have amassed unimaginable fortunes for their owners, and vast power over our societies.
We must find ways of controlling them and taxing them if we’re to have any hope of creating more equal and democratic societies. But the US-UK trade deal could be used to let them run riot.

A digital services tax has been introduced by the chancellor, Rishi Sunak, but Big Tech lobbyists and the US government are using the trade deal to try and get rid of it.

Write to the Chancellor and urge him not to back down on the tax and to oppose the inclusion of rules in the deal that would prevent taxing and regulating Big Tech.

E-PETITIONS

32. Give NHS staff the right to stay in the UK

Our NHS and care system is made up of amazing heroes – from all over the world – who work to make our lives and the lives of our loved ones better. And right now, many of them are on the frontline fighting against coronavirus – from the cleaners keeping hospitals safe to the doctors and nurses saving lives.
A lot of them, though, can only work because of temporary visas – giving them the right to live and work in the UK for a specified period of time. When these visas expire many of these heroes will lose the right to remain in the UK and be forced to leave.
Like Farrukh Sair – an NHS worker who has lived in the UK for 17 years. He’s spent the last few months working on Covid wards, putting his and his family’s life at risk. But now the Home Office is threatening to deport him and his family to Pakistan – a country his two young children won’t even recognise.
This is wrong. We need to recognise the dedication – and in some tragic cases sacrifice – of those who work in health and social care. This petition is calling for the government to give Farrukh and his family, and thousands of others like him the option to permanently remain in the UK. Click here to sign.

33THE LAST WORD – A Request to any Knitters/Crocheters out there!

Not so much J & P related, but certainly involving Christian outreach…
Annie O’Connor, who passed away in the summer, was very involved in street evangelizing in Sheffield City Centre. Last Christmas the team put hand-knitted or crocheted angels around to brighten people’s lives who may be feeling lonely or suffering. One of Annie’s friends has suggested that people who knew Annie made a few angels in her memory, and perhaps passed on the ideas to others. The angels do not require a lot of skill and the pattern for the knitted angel is here and the crocheted angel here.
The Church Army’s Attercliffe and Darnall Centre of Mission is going to be placing them around the local area with a tag saying ‘you are not alone. God came because he loved you. Take this home as a reminder.’
If you are able to help, please contact Anne O’Connor (Annie’s Mum) either directly or through ebulletin@justice-and-peace.org.uk.

 

NEWS LINKSIndependent Catholic News
Find Justice and Peace stories at:
http://www.indcatholicnews.com/news/justice-peace-environment
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Catholic Communications Network
Find news stories at www.catholicnews.org.uk

Latest Zenit Headlines here

Vatican Radio homepage: http://en.radiovaticana.va/

World Council of Churches
https://www.oikoumene.org/en/

UK Parliament News
https://www.parliament.uk/business/news/

Follow us on Twitter: @NJandPNetwork

Follow us on Facebook: National Justice and Peace Network

 

 
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