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General Report from the Cosmology-Ecojustice Group

March 20, 2016

The purpose of this communication is to highlight something of what is happening in the Mercy World in the areas of cosmology and ecojustice.

Did you even know that Mercy International Association has a Cosmology-Ecojustice group which meets online every few months? It is convened by Denise Boyle FMDM whose official title is Assistant Director--Mercy Global Action. She works in conjunction with Aine O’Connor rsm, the Director of Mercy Global Action at the United Nations. You can find out more here

The Cosmology-Ecojustice Group held its first online meeting for 2016 on 3/4 March. Reports from the various countries will be posted in full in this section of the MIA website, but I was so impressed by the reports that I am moved to draw out some highlights. No picture is ever complete. Not all countries are represented even. However this might whet your appetite for more.

Did you know about these educational and spirituality programmes?

  • Rahamim, Bathurst, NSW, Australia continues, among its other activities, its Green Drinks and Sabbatical Intensive Programme.
  • The Congregation in Ireland engaged, among other things, in disseminating material from Pope Francis and the Global Climate Movement in particular around the need for Church and Church related groups to engage with the global warming issue, and in particular to be conscious of the need for climate justice.
  • Screening and discussion in Brisbane, Australia, of the movie 'This Changes Everything', a critique of the global economic system. The movie is based on the novel of the same name by Naomi Klein
  • The forthcoming launch of the Future We Need Mining Toolkit – Digging at our Conscience on Thursday March 10th in Mercy International Centre in Baggot Street, Dublin. It will be launched by Eamonn Meehan, Director of Trócaire.
  • Establishing of a Cosmic Walk on the grounds of Mercy Centre for Ecology and Justice in Newfoundland, and preparing a reflection and prayer for each evolutionary stage to be used by groups and by individuals.

Did you know about these advocacy concerns and efforts?

  •  Action to redress the 'selling of the city’s recycled effluent to a new gold mine starting up in the Bathurst area in Australia' instead of returning it to the already stressed river.
  • The very real concern about Climate Change in New Zealand and their subsequent involvement: 'Sisters of Mercy New Zealand cover Samoa and Tonga. The Cook Islands and the remote Tokelau Islands also come under NZ jurisdiction. Sea level rise, more severe storms and ocean acidification leading to the death of coral are just some of the outcomes that result from Climate Change. Fiji is in recovery mode from Cyclone Winston – a category 5 storm which is the highest level. The death count (42 at present) from this storm is still rising as they have yet to make full contact with the outer islands.'
  • Proactive circulation by the Congregation in Ireland of requests to sign petitions against fracking, along with information about the need to be vigilant with regard to its possible introduction in Ireland
  • Multiple initiatives of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas including lobbying the US Congress along with other faith groups to ensure funding for the Green Climate Fund adopted at COP 21, which will assist poor nations with mitigating and adapting to climate change.
  • The ongoing policy and advocacy efforts of Mercy Global Action at the UN in the areas of Sustainable Development Goals, Human Right to Water and Sanitation and Mining Concerns; Human Rights and Fracking Concerns; and Climate Change
  • Preparations in Newfoundland for Leap Year 2016 activities (related to the Leap Manifesto in Canada) continue and include planning for a Prayer Service and Silent Vigils in front of our government building with the intention of holding government accountable to their election promises and the hope expressed in the Paris talks.

Bridget Crisp, Aine O’Connor and Marianne Comfort attended the Climate Conference in Paris, and you can watch Marianne’s reflection on the event here

At our meeting there was considerable energy generated around continuing conversation about follow up to COP21, exploring the possibilities of developing a Mercy Manifesto (cf the Leap Manifesto) in conjunction with the Mercy International Reflection Process, and developing practical strategies for moving to a low carbon economy.

For more information on any of these issues visit this section of the MIA website or contact Denise Boyle FMDM