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Fr. Ali C. Nnaemeka, OMI, Reports on Development and Peace Assembly Hosted by Caritas Canada

May 9th, 2016

From April 22-24, 2016 I participated in the Regional Assembly of Development and Peace, Caritas Canada, of the Dioceses of Quebec and New-Brunswick. This year’s Regional Assembly took place at Pavillon André-Coindre, Campus Notre-Dame-de-Roy, Quebec. I attended the Assembly as an observer of the Diocese of Baie-Comeau, Northern Coast of Quebec, Canada.

The Assembly, entitled «Let us Create a Climate of Change.», was organized around the upcoming 50th anniversary of Development and Peace, Caritas Canada. The yearlong jubilee celebration will culminate next year. Attending the Assembly were over a hundred people from the Provinces of Quebec and New Brunswick and other francophone areas of Canada.

Fr. Ali (left) with diocesan officials.

Fr. Ali (left) with diocesan officials

The first day was instrumental. Through the testimony of two Bolivian attendees, members of Ceprosi (Centro de Promocion de Salud integral), we heard firsthand the works of Development and Peace, Caritas Canada and its foreign partners. And also, through remarks made by Quebec theologian Jacques Racine, and guided by the writings of the fathers of the Church, the documents of Vatican Councils II and other ecclesiastic writings, we were able to retrace the development of the social doctrines of the Church.

Finally, during this Regional Assembly, I was opportune to meet with men and women of good will who sacrifice everything possible to ensure that the Canadian Church, in spite of dwindling number of its members, does not stop helping our brothers and sisters of the Southern Hemisphere. Many other issues were also addressed, like environmental justice, creation of a humanitarian culture among youth, valuing and promoting the role of women in the church and the society, issues concerning the First Nations of Canada and ways in which religious congregations can collaborate with Development and Peace in the celebration of her 50th anniversary in 2017.

Fr. Ali C. NNAEMEKA, OMI, is a Nigerian Oblate from the Province of Cameroon, working in Northern Canada.

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