Category Archives: justice

Advent Prayer Resources

Advent Prayer booklet 2013

Justice and Peace workers from Queensland dioceses have compiled a set of Advent prayer and liturgy resources which focus on issues raised by this year’s Social Justice Statement, “Lazarus at Our Gate”.

Justice and Peace Workers from the dioceses of Queensland have compiled some prayer and liturgy resources for the four Sundays of Advent. They focus on some of the issues raised in the 2013 – 2014 Social Justice Statement, Lazarus at Our Gate. Search “Catholic Justice & Peace Commission of the Archdiocese of Brisbane” opn Facebook.

Sri Lanka Visit

The Executive Officer of the Catholic Justice & Peace Commission of Brisbane recently visited Sri Lanka as part of the 9th Justice and Peace Workers Network Gathering for Asia and the Pacific. What he encountered challenges efforts by the Australian Government to portray a rosy picture of the situation in post-war Sri Lanka. He urges Australia not to turn a blind eye to human rights abuses in Sri Lanka as part of its obsession with stopping the boats.

Do Not Turn a Blind Eye In Sri Lanka

Press Statement – 9th JPW Meeting

Dr Eban Kirksey on West Papua

Freedom in Entangled Worlds: West Papua and the Architecture of Global PoweDr Eben Kirksey is a US academic and long-time advocate for human rights and justice in West Papua.

He will speak in Brisbane in October about West Papua and his new book on the situation in this troubled region of Indonesia. His major Brisbane talk will be held on Wednesday 17 October, 5.30 p.m. for 6 p.m. at the College Hall, St Joseph’s College, Gregory Terrace, Spring Hill. Entry is free, but donations to support human rights work in West Papua will be gratefully accepted. Copies of Dr Kirksey’s book, Freedom in Entangled Worlds, will also be on sale. Coffee and tea will be available on arrival.

Other talks will be held at Cafe IRA, Tugun, on Thursday 18 October, 4 – 6 pm and at the University of Southern Queensland Toowoomba on Friday 19 October at 12.30 pm.

Download Eban Kirksey Brisbane Flyer (pdf)  here

Download Edan KirkseyTugan Flyer I(pdf) here

Download Eban Kirksey UQ Event Flyer (pdf) here

Download Eban Kirksey Toowoomba Event Flyer (doc) here

Eben Kirksey first went to West Papua, the Indonesian-controlled half of New Guinea, as an exchange student in 1998. His later study of West Papua’s resistance to the Indonesian occupiers and the forces of globalization morphed as he discovered that collaboration, rather than resistance, was the primary strategy of this dynamic social movement. Accompanying indigenous activists to Washington, London, and the offices of the oil giant BP, Kirksey saw the revolutionaries’ knack for getting inside institutions of power and building coalitions with unlikely allies, including many Indonesians. He discovered that the West Papuans’ pragmatic activism was based on visions of dramatic transformations on coming horizons, of a future in which they would give away their natural resources in grand humanitarian gestures, rather than watch their homeland be drained of timber, gold, copper, and natural gas. During a lengthy, brutal occupation, West Papuans have harbored a messianic spirit and channeled it in surprising directions. Kirksey studied West Papua’s movement for freedom while a broad-based popular uprising gained traction from 1998 until 2008. Blending ethnographic research with indigenous parables, historical accounts, and narratives of his own experiences, he argues that seeking freedom in entangled worlds requires negotiating complex interdependencies.

Freedom in Entangled Worlds from Eben Kirksey on Vimeo.

Appeal for West Papuan Political Prisoner

The Indonesian Government has put  many political activists in West Papua in prison for their activities.  Many reliable reports from human rights organisations in West Papua suggest that these political prisoners are mistreated while in jail.  Many are tortured.  Prison authorities also tend to withhold or delay appropriate medical treatment for such political prisoners when they fall ill.

Our community and Church contacts in West Papua have approached us for help with the provision of medical treatment for one such political prisoner who had a stroke in December 2011 and is paralysed on one side of his body.  He is a 28 year old farmer from Wamena in Papua and has a life sentence.  Prison authorities are not providing him with the medical assistance he needs to prevent further deterioration in his condition.  We have been provided with a detailed account and costing for his treatment for the rest of this year.  The cost is $1400 and will pay for medication, physiotherapy, a special diet and hospital transport.  His family and local human rights organisations do not have the money to pay for this treatment.  We appeal for donations which can help pay for his treatment and treatment for others in similar circumstances.

You can send a cheque to CJPC, GPO Box 282, Brisbane Q 4001.  Cheques should be made out to “CJPC Brisbane West Papua Fund.”  You can also make a deposit into the account online.  Account details are:

Account Name: CJPC Brisbane West Papua Fund

Bank Name: CBA, 240 Queen Street, Brisbane  Q 4000.

BSB: 064786

ACC No. 520846001

Thank you for any help you can give.  Please circulate this to people in your networks too.

Peter Arndt

West Papua Solidarity Group Brisbane &

Executive Officer

Catholic Justice & Peace Commission of Brisbane

P:  (07) 3336 9173

F: (07) 3336 9177

M:  0409 265 476

Respect and Understanding Needed on Tent Embassy


Thursday 28 June 2012

Aboriginal Tent Embassy Brisbane

Aboriginal Tent Embassy Brisbane

The Catholic Justice and Peace Commission of Brisbane, along with its Aboriginal partners and advisors, welcomes the recent dropping of police charges against a number of people who came to support local Aboriginal people and the Aboriginal Tent Embassy in May.

 It is our hope that charges against others arrested by police will also be dropped.

We do not want to see the ugly confrontation between police, the Brisbane City Council, Aboriginal people and their supporters, which occurred on 16 May at Musgrave Park, repeated.

The sight of over 200 police officers surrounding Aboriginal people at the Tent Embassy at Musgrave Park was a sorry reminder to Aboriginal people of the troubled and difficult relations they have experienced with the police in this State over many years.

The indignity of being evicted by force by police at the request of Council authorities from land with which they have a long and deep connection was also a sorry reminder of their dispossession and all its negative consequences.

We welcome the conciliatory and respectful approaches and dialogue which have taken place between the Lord Mayor of Brisbane, Brisbane City Council officers and elders and representatives of the local Aboriginal communities since the confrontation.  It is hoped that this constructive approach will achieve positive outcomes for both the first peoples of this land and for the municipal authorities.

We implore both the State Government and the Queensland Police to follow the Council’s lead so that respectful and productive relationships can be established and cooperative partnerships can be formed to address the problems that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples face across Queensland.

As we approachAboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Sunday on 1 July and NAIDOC Week (July 1 – 8), we acknowledge efforts by Church agencies, parishes and schools to develop relationships with local Aboriginal people.  We encourage them to maintain and increase such efforts.

In particular, we encourage Catholics and people in the wider community to learn more about the history of Aboriginal peoples’ connection with Musgrave Park in South Brisbane and with other significant sites around south-east Queensland.

We also urge Catholics to learn more about the significance of the first Aboriginal Tent Embassy which was established in Canberra forty years ago and to walk with them on their on-going struggle for justice.

Finally, we wish to acknowledge the significant contribution of Aboriginal church workers and Aboriginal Christians who have worked tirelessly to support their sisters and brothers in the Tent Embassy in Musgrave Park since its establishment and for their long standing efforts to ensure that their people are afforded dignity in many difficult situations over many years.  These humble and faithful people are extraordinary witnesses to God’s abundant mercy and love.  May God continue to bless their work and inspire others to join them in their efforts to build a civilisation of love in Jesus’ name.

For further information and comment, please contact Peter Arndt (Catholic Justice & Peace Commission) on (07) 3336 9173 or 0409 265 476 or Ravina Waldren (Murri Ministry) on (07) 3891 5911 or 0408 707 101.

 This statement is issued by the Commission under the provisions of its mandate which enable it to speak in its own right and has been authorised by the Commission’s Executive and its Aboriginal advisors before release.