Tag Archives: Peace

Commission to Support Parish Responses to Statement on Violence

Social Justice Sunday 2010

Brisbane’s Catholic Justice and Peace Commission will seek to help parishes to respond to the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference’s 2010 Social Justice Sunday Statement, Violence in Australia: A Message of Peace.

The Commission’s Executive Officer, Peter Arndt, said that the violence which is becoming so common in communities across the country needs to be challenged with Christ’s radical message of peace.

“The Bishops’ Statement encourages us as Christians to focus on the many forms of violence in contemporary Australia, to understand the causes and to take action in the spirit of Jesus’ teaching,” Mr Arndt said.

“The Bishops’ Statement presents us with a whole series of questions to help us to consider how we might become messengers of peace in our families, our communities, our nation and our world,” he said.

Mr Arndt is currently holding meetings in the deaneries of the Archdiocese to help Catholics to explore the issues and insights contained in the Statement and to provide information on what resources are available to promote and use the Statement.

The Justice and Peace Commission is also currently discussing possible collaboration with the Franciscan organisation, Pace e Bene, in order to offer Catholics concrete opportunities to develop skills for living nonviolently.

“We are aware of the many faces of violence in Australia from bullying in schools, violent video games, domestic violence and road rage to the so-called structural violence of poverty and racism,” Mr Arndt said.

“The Bishops ask us to do more than shake our heads at the growing presence of violence in our country and to take up the challenge to be active in making peace in our hearts, our homes, our communities and our nation,” he said.

For further information, please contact Peter Arndt on (07) 3336 9173 or 0409 265 476.
NB  This release is issued with the approval of the Commission or its Executive under the provision of its Mandate which enables it to speak in its own right when required.  The views expressed in it do not necessarily represent the views of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane.

2010 Social Justice Statement: Sample Editorial for Parish Use

2010 Social Justice Statement Summary

2010 Social Justice Sunday  Powerpoint Slide

2010 Social Justice Statement OHT

Heed Pope’s Call in Wake of Copenhagen

Sunday 20 December 2009

Brisbane’s Catholic Justice and Peace Commission has called on Catholics to heed Pope Benedict’s call for a greater sense of ecological responsibility in his 2010 World Day of Peace Message.

The Commission’s Executive Officer, Peter Arndt, said that concerted efforts were now needed by all people of goodwill to encourage and support the Australian Government’s efforts to implement and strengthen commitments contained in the Copenhagen Accord on climate change.

He said that, while many people committed to strong and urgent global action on climate change were very disappointed by the Copenhagen outcome, the agreement is a positive first step in a long journey towards an effective response to climate change.

“We should welcome the acknowledgement that global temperatures should be kept to below two degrees to avoid the worst consequences of climate change,” Mr Arndt said.

“It is also important that wealthy, developed nations have agreed to work towards a $100 billion a year fund to assist poorer countries to deal with the impact of climate change,” he said.

“And it is also vital that highly developed nations like the USA and significant emerging economies like China fulfill their commitment to control their greenhouse gas emissions,” he said.

“Despite these advances, we still have a long way to go if we are to have the ‘global solidarity’ for which Pope Benedict called in his World Day of Peace Message,” he said.

“Small island states like Tuvalu, low-lying Asian countries like Bangladesh and many poor countries in Africa are vulnerable to the damaging consequences of climate change and wealthy countries like Australia and the USA must not short change the people in these countries in their climate change action,” he said.

“The representatives of poorer countries expressed their exasperation with the unwillingness of the leaders of many wealthy countries to make a more wholehearted commitment to address climate change,” he said.

“If their concerns are not heard and addressed effectively, global tensions will mount and the peace we all long for will elude us, as the Pope indicates,” he said.

“Politicians around the world seem to be hampered in their response by the short term economic and political costs of an effective response to the threat of climate change,” he said.

“We must try to encourage our own leaders to embrace the ‘inter-generational solidarity’ which Pope benedict called for,” he said.

“We must not only encourage our leaders to take effective action for the sake of the many who will suffer serious consequences in the next couple of decades, but also commit ourselves to protecting the interests of future generations,” he said.

“Pope Benedict reminds us of the indivisible relationship between God, human beings and the created order,” he said.

“We must take care of the Earth if our relationship with God  is to be healthy,” he said.

For further information, please contact Peter Arndt on (07) 3336 9173 or 0409 265 476.

NB  This release is issued with the approval of the Commission or its Executive under the provision of its Charter which enables it to speak in its own right.  The views expressed in it do not necessarily represent the views of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane.

Call for Action on Sri Lankan Conflict

Media Release

Monday 9 March 2009

Brisbane’s Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace has called on the Australian Government to work with other Commonwealth nations to put an end to the on-going conflict between Government forces and Tamil rebels in the north of Sri Lanka.

The long-running conflict has trapped between 100000 and 200000 civilians in the bloody battle zone and has caused thousands of deaths and injuries and a humanitarian crisis of significant proportions.

The Commission’s Executive Officer, Peter Arndt, said that Sri Lankans are distressed by the relative silence of the international community on this human tragedy.

“Our sister Commission for Justice and Peace in the Diocese of Jaffna has expressed its concern at the failure of world leaders and major organisations to speak out about the horrible violence, death and human suffering,” Mr Arndt said.

“This dreadful situation has not attracted the same attention as the human rights abuses suffered by the people of Burma and Tibet in the last year,” he said.

“The silence and inaction must stop so that the suffering of our Sri Lankan sisters and brothers can stop,” he said.

The Brisbane Commission is calling on Catholics to join it in sending messages to the Federal Government, local MPs and Senators calling for urgent action to end this human tragedy.

It has also asked Catholics to pray constantly for peace in Sri Lanka.

“We must do what we can to support our Sri Lankan sisters and brothers in this time of enormous suffering,” Mr Arndt said.

“We know that our sister Commission in Jaffna has worked hard with their prayers, rallies for peace, fasts and public statements and we will do what we can to support them,” he said.


For further information, please contact Peter Arndt on (07) 3336 9173 or 0409 265 476.

NB This release is issued with the approval of the Commission or its Executive under the provision of its Charter which enables it to speak in its own right. The views expressed in it do not necessarily represent the views of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane.

Sri Lanka Action Sheet March 2009

Jaffna Diocese

Caritas Jaffna

Violence in Jaffna, justice and peace commission requests aid for the more than 25,000 refugees
by Melani Manel Perera (AsiaNews.It)

Brisbane Group Calls for Zimbabwe Support

Brisbane Group Calls for Zimbabwe Support

Brisbane’s Catholic Justice and Peace Commission has helped to form a group which aims to rally support for the human rights of the people of Zimbabwe.

Australians Supporting Zimbabwe will hold a public Walk for Peace in Zimbabwe this weekend to draw attention to the plight of Zimbabweans in the period leading up to the Presidential run-off election on 28 June.

Images of the Walk may be viewed here.

The Commission’s Executive Officer, Peter Arndt, said that many Australians are not aware of how much violence and intimidation is being used by forces loyal to President Robert Mugabe to stop people from voting for his opponent, Movement for Democratic Change Leader, Morgan Tsvangirai.

“Zimbabwe is in a state of almost total economic and social collapse and the people are suffering immensely,” Mr Arndt said.

“Many people are without jobs, homes or sufficient food and their lives are very desperate,” he said.

“We know that groups of war veterans and young men have been sent out to various parts of the country to unleash horrible violence and destruction on those who might support Mr Tsvangirai,” he said.

“Not even Members of Parliament are safe from this violence and intimidation,” he said.

The father of one of our local Brisbane group’s members, Ian Kay, has been arrested and is in leg irons and other influential MPs are being hunted down too,” he said.

“It is a truly horrifying and appalling situation in which there is no respect for human rights, democracy or justice,” he said.

The Walk for Peace in Zimbabwe will be held this Sunday 8 June from 10.00 a.m. It will commence at the Nepalese Peace Pagoda in the Cultural Forecourt of Southbank and will proceed to Davies Park, West End, where there will be speakers, African food and music.

Those who want to enjoy the African food and music are being asked to donate money towards an appeal which will provide emergency assistance to those caught up in the current violence and to public campaigns promoting democracy and justice in Zimbabwe.

For further information, please contact Peter Arndt on (07) 3336 9173 or 0409 265 476.

Walk for Peace Rally pdf Flyer

NB This release is issued with the approval of the Commission or its Executive under the provision of its Charter which enables it to speak in its own right. The views expressed in it do not necessarily represent the views of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane.

Women of Zimbabwe Unite

Zimbabwean Dissidents Unite in Prayer for Peace
New Flickr group — Zimbabwe: Peace, Justice, Freedom and Democracy