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Beware crusade rhetoric in Iraq conflict
Colossal blunders await us, unless our political leaders have a clear understanding of Islamic traditions of war and legitimacy, and why jihadist movements have gained such a hold in the Middle East.

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Aboriginal leader thanks PM
Indigenous leader Djiniyini Gondarra, from northeast Arnhem Land (Galiwinku), who speaks for the Yolngu Nations Assembly, has written to Tony Abbott expressing his “sincere gratitude” for his “courage in publicly acknowledging the terrible impact on Aboriginal Peoples as a result of early British settlement”.

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Tutu: lay bare the horrors of the past
South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu has supported calls for a truth and justice commission to expose "the horrors of the past" suffered by Aboriginal Australians. In a statement released for World Peace Day on Sunday (21 September), the former Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town said it should be followed by a "national healing process for all Australians".

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Aboriginal people call for treaty
Meanwhile calls are mounting among Aboriginal communities for a formal and binding agreement with the government. Aboriginal Peoples have waited more than 200 years to have control over their lives and to determine their futures through legal agreements, compacts, covenants or treaties established in law and enforceable through the courts.

Watch this video for more 

Unfinished business in the Timor Sea
The 15th anniversary, marked recently, of East Timor’s historic vote for independence, highlights Australia’s unfinished business in the Timor Sea and Timor’s ongoing struggle to become a true sovereign nation – complete with sea boundaries.

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Women in Timor-Leste
The Alola Foundation was established in 2001 by Kirsty Sword Gusmão, the former First Lady of Timor-Leste. The initial focus of the Alola Foundation was to raise awareness and campaign against sexual and gender-based violence in Timor-Leste. The Foundation has grown to include a wider range of programs that assist the women and children of Timor-Leste – programs such as advocacy, economic empowerment, education and literacy, and maternal and child health.

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How the UN works with T-L women
A video from United Nations Women presents stories on how the organisation has supported women in Timor-Leste to rebuild themselves and work toward participation in peacebuilding in their country.

Watch the video here 

Jesuit scholastics in Timor-Leste
Young Jesuits in Timor-Leste are helping to build this new nation through education.

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Caritas calls for Pacific climate aid
Caritas New Zealand is calling for urgent international funding to help Pacific islands struggling with the effects of climate change.

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Inuit elder tells climate conference of thinning ice
In just 60 years the ice in Greenland has reduced from eight metres to two metres, an indigenous elder has told the Religions for the Earth Conference in New York. Australian Jacqui Remond writes of her experience of the conference and of the Peoples’ Climate March last month.

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Free protesters, avoid excessive force
Hong Kong authorities should avoid excessive use of force as pro-democracy protests continue, Human Rights Watch said today (2 October). Officials should immediately free anyone still detained for peacefully participating in demonstrations.

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Women to try for Solomons parliament
Solomon Islands National Council of Women says more than half the number of seats in the Solomons parliament could go to 27 aspiring women politicians intending to contest the national elections later this year. At present two of the 50 seats are held by women.

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A busman’s holiday in Gaza
Choosing to experience the Hamas-Israel conflict first-hand, American Jewish doctor Adam Kawalek volunteered on a mission to help Palestinians during Operation Protective Edge. Renee Ghert-Zand reports for The Times of Israel.

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See also An American Jew reflects on his visit to Palestine 

UN calls for NZ to treat disabled better
A United Nations committee has called on New Zealand to address a wide range of abuses towards people with disabilities including the contentious issue of payment for carers who are family members. The New Zealand government lost its appeal against a court ruling that it must pay people who care for family members with disabilities at the same rate as non-family members.

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Bishops say sport can promote a more just society
The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference Social Justice Statement 2014-2015 is titled A Crown for Australia. It explores the potential of sport to promote personal development, social inclusion and a more just society.

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Rediscovering the Spiritual in God’s Creation
10-15 March 2015 McLaren Vale.

Click here for more details… 

Following the worldwide Peoples Climate March
… on 21 September, sign up to the ourvoices.net petition.

ERC Asylum Seekers and Refugees
An education resource with activities for students, focusing on real people and their stories.
The resource is available to download at no cost. For information call 02 8762 4200 or go to erc.org.au

End gender-based violence
With an estimated up to two million people, mostly women and children, trafficked annually for prostitution, forced labour, slavery or servitude, the United Nations’ UNiTE campaign focusing on ending violence against women and children has called for a focus on this issue on the 25th of every month.  

Let the Son Shine
An Australian Catholic response to climate change

The words 'climate change' are on many people’s lips. Scientific evidence has convinced many that humans are largely responsible for this change and must act urgently to address it. Others have been shocked out of complacency and into reflection by fickle weather conditions, ranging from recent hurricanes in New Orleans to a ten-year drought throughout Australia. So says Columban Fr Charles Rue in a new release, Let the Son Shine  

The Call to Justice in Scripture
How do you experience the Scriptures calling you to live justly? This PowerPoint can be used for personal reflection or as stimulus material for group discussion. Reflecting on The Call to Justice in Scripture  

 

 


Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church

Major International Catholic Social Teaching Documents

Key Principles

Human Dignity
Each person, made in the image and likeness of God, has an inalienable and transcendent human dignity which gives rise to human rights.

The Common Good
We are called to work for conditions which ensure that every person and group in society is able to meet their needs and realize their potential.

Subsidiarity
The people or groups most directly affected by a decision or policy should have a key decision making role.

Solidarity
We can only grow and achieve our potential in relationship with others. Solidarity encourages us to commit ourselves to the common good.