Social Justice at Our Lady of Dolours Parish is based on Catholic Social Teaching
- The dignity of the human person
- The common good
- Empowering the people
Social Justice Around the Bay
The Social Justice Ministry is part of the network of Social Justice groups within the Diocese of Broken Bay. Their website is at http://sjaroundthebay.org/
The parish has three key Social Justice Projects – one local, one national and one international. These projects were selected as part of a parish discernment process some years ago.
Local Project - Street Work
National Project – Sister Parishes of Bourke and Brewarrina
International Project – Maubara Orphanage in Timor Leste
Street Work is a Sydney based charity helping young people between 11 and 18 who are 'at risk'. Street Work aims to help troubled young people affected by crime, violence, destructive family relationships, rejection and isolation, risk of homelessness, learning difficulties, truancy, poor employment opportunities and drug and alcohol dependency. Street Work has programs that support these young people as they strive to turn their lives around.
Social Justice at Our Lady of Dolours promotes the work of Street Work and provides opportunities for awareness raising and identification of kids in need of support. We have supported Street Work with considerable funds raised through our Bunnings barbecues and the Christmas collection of 2015.
Bourke and Bewarrina
The ministry aims to provide pastoral support to these parishes and in turn grow in their understanding of the outback and the resilience of its people. There have been a number of initiatives of outreach and practical assistance that have built mutual respect and friendship.
Maubara Orphanage - Timor Leste
The Carmelite sisters care for 27 girls ranging in ages from 6 - 16 at Maubara. The children are well cared for and attend the local school. To ensure the safety of the children one of our parishoners has provided on-going financial support so that regular maintenance checks can be undertaken. As a result of a generous bequest from one of our parishioners, accommodation has been built in Fatuada in Dili. This enables the senior girls to complete their last years of secondary schooling in Dili (see attached pictures). Parish funds have provided new furniture and furnishings for the new dormitory. We believe that a prosperous future for Timor Leste is dependent on education of its young people. At the end of 2017 some of the girls will graduate from secondary school and we are exploring the possibility of setting up a scholarship fund to support the girls as they move on to university.
The Social Justice Ministry meets monthly on a Tuesday afternoon between February and November. Many of the members attend the 12:15pm Mass and we then share a light luncheon and fellowship prior to the 1:15pm meeting. We welcome new members or interested observers. Agendas span a broad area of Social Justice topics including refugees, tax justice, the environment, fair trade, just working conditions etc. Where possible there is a practical response to each of the issues.
Contact person: Trish Wilson, phone: 9411 1262
Social Justice Links
Individually, we can do very little about social justice issues, but by joining other people of goodwill around the world in solidarity, through supporting existing national and global organizations (examples listed below) and getting involved in their campaigns and petitions, much can be, and has been, achieved. It is easy to become an internet social justice activist! Login to these sites and submit your email address to recieve campaign information and petitions for signatures in support of their projects.
Australian Catholic Social Justice Council (ACSJC):
The ACSJC is the official Catholic website for social justice issues. From here, you can get information on the social teachings of the Church, a list of current social justice issues, statements and publications of ACSJC. The site gives an insight into the ethical and spiritual for social justice action.
Edmund Rice Centre: http://www.erc.org.au/
The Edmund Rice Centre is involved in a range of projects and activities across the four areas of its operation in research, community education, advocacy and networking. The Centre's objectives are to:
- Conduct and encourage research into the causes of poverty and inequity in society, especially with regard to youth and Indigenous Australians.
- Promote teachings that support awareness, understanding and action in the areas of justice and community issues.
- Promote experiential learning activities through organised and reflective immersion programs in Australia and internationally.
- Encourage the development of skills in advocacy and social action.
- Facilitate liaison and networking opportunities amongst agencies involved in social justice and community education activities.
GetUp is a national, independent, not-for-profit community campaigning group with more than 800,000 members. They empower Australians to have their say on important national issues on social justice, economic fairness and environmental sustainability. GetUp members believe in a fair go for everyone and continue to fight for fairer treatment of asylum seekers, reforms in the mental health system, free and fair media and marriage equality for all Australians. The GetUp community is committed to campaigning for a fairer taxation system, a better education for every child, a comprehensive National Disability Insurance Scheme, and a welfare system that protects society's most vulnerable people. In a crucial decade for our planet, GetUp members are leading the way on action against climate change and for a renewable energy future. They also stand for the ongoing protection of our forests, national parks and Great Barrier Reef.
Robin Hood Tax: http://www.robinhoodtax.org/
At present, the top rich 1% of the world's people owns more than half of the world's assets. Taxing the rich by changing national tax laws to redress this imbalance is universally opposed by the politically powerful rich. One little way to deal with this problem is to implement the Robin Hood Tax. The big idea behind this tax is to generate hundreds of billions of dollars annually by levying a small tax of less than 1/2 of 1% on financial transactions in the stock markets. If this tax is supported by the rich nations of the world and the funds used to help the struggling developing nations, it has the power to eliminate extreme poverty, put food on the table for all, get every child on earth to school and provide health care for all. Eleven EU member states will be imposing a 'Robin Hood' tax on financial transactions in 2016, after it was proposed in 2011 to counter financial crises.
Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP): https://jewishvoiceforpeace.org/
JVP members are mostly US Jews inspired by the Jewish tradition to work together for peace, social justice, equality, human rights, respect for international law, and a US foreign policy based on these ideals. JVP opposes anti-Jewish, anti-Muslim, and anti-Arab bigotry and oppression. JVP seeks an end to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem; security and self-determination for Israelis and Palestinians; a just solution for Palestinian refugees based on principles established in international law; an end to violence against civilians; and peace and justice for all peoples in the Middle East.
SumOfUs is a worldwide movement of people working together to hold corporations acountable for their actions and forge a new, sustainable path for our global economy.
Avaaz is a 40-million-person global campaign network that works to ensure that the views and values of the world's people shape global decision-making. ("Avaaz" means "voice" or "song" in many languages) Avaaz members live in every naion of the world. Their team is spread across 18 countries on 6 continents and operates in 17 languages. Learn about Avaaz's biggest campaigns or follow Avaaz on Facbook and Twitter.
ONE is an international campaigning and advocacy organization of more than 6 million people taking action to end extreme poverty and preventable disease, particularly in Africa. The facts show extreme poverty has already been cut by 60% and can be virtually eliminated by 2030, but only if we act with urgency now.
Amnesty International: https://www.amnesty.org.au/
Amnesty International is a global movement of over 7 million people committed to defending those who are denied justice or freedom.
The Alliance for Gambling Reform: http://www.pokiesplayyou.org.au/
The Alliance for Gambling Reform is a collaboration of organizations with a shared concern about the deeply harmful and unfair impacts of gambling.
Jubilee Australia: http://www.jubileeaustralia.org/
Jubilee Australia engages in research to seek reform of Australian government and corporate practices, and of the global financial system, to support community wellbeing and a just, sustainable, global economy.
Fair Agenda: http://www.fairagenda.org/
Fair Agenda is a community of 35,000 Australians campaigning for a fair and equal future for women.
Pro Bono Australia: https://probonoaustralia.com.au/
Pro Bono Australia is one of Australia's first social businesses. Since 2000 they have provided media, jobs, education, skilled volunteering and other resources for the common good to over one million people nationally in 2015. Certified in 2013 as a B Corp organization, today they act as the central online hub for the Not-for Profit sector, the broader social economy and those wanting to engage with it.
RootsAction is an international online initiative dedicated to galvanizing people who are committed to economic fairness, equal rights, civil liberties, environmental protection and defunding endless wars.