New booklet published by Pau Farràs, ten years after the earthquake
That was question asked by Hillary Clinton, then-Secretary of State, when she heard about the earthquake that had devastated Haiti’s capital, Port-au-Prince. It is also the question that echoes all through this booklet. Readers themselves may also at first be asking: Why Haiti? Why Haiti? Why dedicate a whole booklet to Haiti? Maybe the reason is that now, ten years after that cataclysmic earthquake, it is the tiny, invisible country of Haiti that most clearly makes manifest all the injustices and contradictions of our globalization.
Five conflicts that need to be kept visible so that they do not fall into oblivion in spite of the silence of the media and the centrality of the pandemic in our attention.
The pandemic has been the center of a large part of the social and theological reflection of Cristianisme i Justícia during this past year and a half. In spite of everything, we have tried to maintain a space to continue reflecting from the viewpoint of faith and justice about other social problems of the present time throughout the world that unfortunately have been eclipsed by this phenomenon.
There have been many Christian teachers or mystics who have explained the effects of contemplative prayer, but not how to do it. Fr. Jalics has filled this void with a suggestion that was born through a personal experience of detention and isolation that took place under the Argentine dictatorship. In this Notebook, which begins with a magnificent prologue by Xavier Melloni, he explains how his contemplative “journey” of prayer is tied into the practice of the Ignatian Exercises.
Oscar Mateos analyzes the different post-pandemic scenarios that are open to us
The COVID-19 pandemic has generated a global social, political and economic shock, with consequences that are not yet foreseeable, making even sharper the focus on the problems of an unequal and plutocratic world which is politically polarized, socially atomized and environmentally unviable. It is for this reason that the author invites us to take advantage of the “moment of clarity” that the pandemic offers us to take a deep dive into some essential lessons learned, as, for example, our having realized that working for the common good for those who need care is what sustains life.
Beginning with the next course, Jose Ignacio Garcia, currently the regional Director for Europe of the Jesuit Refugee Service, will become the Director of the Center for Studies
Jose Ignacio Garcia will be the new Director of the Cristianisme i Justícia Center for Studies beginning with the next course, replacing Xavier Casanovas who has occupied that post for the last seven years.
Jose Ignacio Garcia is a Jesuit, born in Madrid in 1964. He entered the Society of Jesus in 1983. He is a theologian and economist. He studied Economics and Business Administration (ICADE) in Madrid. Between 1992 and 1994 he was sent to Malawi to work with the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) by accompanying the refugee population of Mozambique.
The whole capitalist system has been held up by one central idea: the need for constant unlimited and expansive economic growth. Growth without limits has become a necessity in order to gain the maximum benefit. In this booklet, we try to identify the common points of alternative social and economic proposals from an ecological and “de-growth” point of view, which challenge the current capitalist system. Since the publication of the encyclical Laudato si’, these proposals to “live better with less” should be an integral part of Christian thought and practice.
The Center presents the virtual book “Diary of a Pandemic”, that gathers together various articles that present social and theological readings about the time that was spent being confined
Cristianisme i Justicia publishes today an end-of-the-year statement. More than just offering a reflection about what has happened during this year, this time the Center has tried to repurpose the slogans that have accompanied us for the last 10 months, marked by the COVID-19 pandemic. Oft repeated slogans like “Everything will turn out well”, #IAmStayingHome or “the new normal” among others, that it is necessary to review with calm and a critical spirit in order to become conscious of what we really mean.
In this difficult year of 2020, we are writing to remind you that, in spite of all the circumstances, we want to continue being for you a fount of reflection, commitment and hope. The current crisis which has been caused by the pandemic has created a large impact in our lives. In spite of everything, we would like to continue being faithful to the commitments we have made to you.
We find the phrase with which this publication is titled in St. Paul when he says, “But when in the fullness of time God sent His Son” (Gal 4:4), or “He has allowed us to know the mystery of his will, according to his goodness, which He had proposed in Himself, to bring together all things in Christ in the dispensation of the fullness of time.” (Eph 1:9-10). Beginning with this expression, the author of this article directly formulates this question: could Paul have written this today? Or even more clearly: can we understand it?
This publication, according to the author, seeks to make a contribution to the elaboration of a new paradigm of vulnerability, a paradigm that takes issue with the narratives that have shaped the Western worldview of self-sufficiency and forgetfulness of the body. After an initial deconstructive moment, the booklet proposes the creation of a “somatopolitical” language, which uses the universal semantics of vulnerability to place at the very center of social praxis the ethical demand for responsibility and the political vindication of caring.
The coronavirus is pouncing on a world in which inequality has grown in the majority of countries, situated in an economic system that favors the hoarding of wealth, income, opportunities and natural resources by a few people. By not confronting this enormous crisis in a way that is different from others, we will be aiding a sharp growth in poverty and the widening of the gap that divides humankind into those that have access to protection and those that are left to the elements.
New "Virtual Collection" published by Joan Carrera
In this Notebook the Author gathers together the response generated by COVID-19 among the political and economic classes and the consequences that are the prelude to future crises. Because once we are on the other side of the pandemic it is necessary to take on urgently the social and economic aspects of our system that should be questioned in order to foresee and avoid the recurrence in the near future of episodes like the one which we are now living.
Our sincere appreciation for the commitment of the readers of Cristianisme i Justícia in times of exceptionality
Gemma Campmany is the secretary and the person in charge of attending to the enquiries that come in from all over the world from our thousands of readers. During the pandemic she has continued to attend the mail and telephone, and has been moved by reading and listening to the testimonies you have sent her. For this reason she wants to thank you in this short letter. The whole team feel the same way. Thank you very much!
New paper published by Florencia Brizuela González
Racism is something more profound than the explicit prejudices and stereotypes expressed by intolerant or reactionary individuals. That is to say, discrimination is not just a question of people who are bigoted. Discrimination is inevitably produced by a system that classifies and grades persons and peoples. Such a system calls into question the humanity of persons or behaviors that are different from those of the supposedly ideal modern subject, namely, the white, well-off, heterosexual male.
The study center publishes the Paper n. 253: "Coronavirus: One Single Humanity, One Common Vulnerability"
Cristianisme i Justícia study center presents here a reflection on our experiences during these days and on the challenges and risks that await us.
Saved “by the skin of our teeth”
Jaume Flaquer, theological director for the center, in a document published in our Papers collection, warns that “we have been saved as humanity by the skin of our teeth … because, despite the initial hesitancy of some countries, we decided at last to focus our concern on older persons and others who are vulnerable.”
In this booklet, we will be calling upon different people to tell us about their own experiences, in order to give us their personal testimony. These are real life testimonies which will invite us to discover faith from the perspective of justice.
New issue of GUIDES written by Josep M. Rambla and Josep M. Lozano
In fidelity to the purpose of our GUIDES collection, we offer in these pages some basic materials for understanding and practicing apostolic discernment in common. The materials include documents of the General Congregations, along with letters and other relevant texts of the Superiors General of the Society of Jesus. This compendium of texts is also an invitation to engage in a practice that will help us to respond in a realistic and relevant way to the challenges of the historical moment in which we live.
New booklet published by Maria Clara Lucchetti Bingemer
The issue of women and the notion of the feminine has again come to the fore, both in the secular world as well as in the ecclesial sphere. Could this be why women are taking on leading roles in a turbulent, violent and changing world? Could this be why Pope Francis has brought up the issue time and time again? Whatever the reason, at this point in time, when the world as a whole finds itself immersed in violence, and facing so many economic, political and social problems, there is a widespread sense that women can play an important role in the process of change.
Growing inequality and the corruption of leaders have split our society apart. Neoliberalism has become an intolerable ideology for the majority of people. For some that is because they suffer its consequences in their own lives. For others it is because the ideology subtly reduces them to individual consumers whose only value is being interchangeable numbers instead of persons. This is causing a great sense of unease throughout the world. In spite of this reality, the framework that we propose chooses hope, a hope based on the conviction that it is necessary to forge new bonds.
The political construction of places safe from profanation involves defending those “sacred places” we have already established, demolishing dwellings that have become unlivable, and building new multicultural homes that are sustainable and non-discriminatory, recognizing and welcoming negated identities. The author invites us to abandon our passivity and become architects and masons so as to keep the world from ending up “a huge commercial center where every reality carries a sticker price and a bar code.”
New issue of GUIDES written by David Guindulain Rifà
You have in your hands a compilation of practices that seek to be an aid for personal and community prayer. These 49 spiritual practices include a variety of approaches to God that have been inspired by pastoral ministry and psychology. From the most elementary function of human nature —breathing— to the highest operation —language— each person will be able to choose an appropriate manner of praying by focusing attention on one resource or another. We hope that this booklet will help both those seeking to advance in the spiritual life and those who wish to help others to do so.
New paper published by the Working Group on Christian Nonviolence.
On the 10th and 11th April, a spiritual retreat took place at the Casa Santa Marta, (in the Vatican), with the leaders of South Sudan, Salva Kiir and Riek Machar, the most prominent figures in the South Sudanese conflict. The retreat ended with the presence of Pope Francis, who called for peace, but in such a special way that the whole world took notice: he got down on his knees and kissed the feet of the leaders responsible for the conflict, one by one, and without exception.
In this essay the author proposes ten reasons for involving the world’s religions in the environmental debate. The ten reasons offer important keys for understanding the religious declarations of recent years as valid strategies for personal, institutional, and social transformation. The author seeks to open up the prophetic, ascetical, penitential, apocalyptic, sacramental, soteriological, mystical, wisdom, communitarian, and eschatological dimensions that pervade the spiritual experience of humankind.
Carles Marcet, sj. has a degree in Theology, and for a number of years has been Parish Priest of Bellvitge (L’Hospitalet del Llobregat), whilst also giving the Spiritual Exercises to groups of ordinary lay people. He is a team member of the International Spirituality Centre attached to the Cave of Manresa, where he runs an Ignatian Immersion Course and another course, ‘Two Months of The-ological Recycling’. In the series EIDES (in Catalan and Spanish), he has also published Ignacio de Loyola: un itinerario vital [Ignatius of Loyola: A Lifelong Journey] (no. 75, 2015).
When we speak about government finance and taxes, we are confronted with a lot of questions: do we pay too many taxes? are they really put to good use? could we save on them? does it make sense for me to pay taxes when there is so much government corruption? For a long time the question of tax policy has been left out of political and social debate. Only in recent years, with the impact of economic crisis and globalization, are we again focusing on this question that is crucial for maintaining our welfare states.
In the face of the hells created by violence, oppression, and repression, the victims of injustice seem to have no other alternative than fight (action-reaction) or flight (silent submission). This booklet explores the “third way” of Jesus, which goes far beyond those two options. This “third way” is the path of active non-violence, a path that requires great lucidity, creativity, faith, and constancy. It comes out of a long biblical tradition, and it acquires special meaning in the context of our present-day society.
The policies of the so-called New Right and its questioning of the most basic human rights, especially as regards migrants and refugees, undermine the deepest foundations of the Old Europe. The present text seeks to investigate the causes and conditions that lie behind this specter that is haunting the continent, and it warns of the attempts by movements of the extreme right to use Christianity and religious confrontation in order to justify their ideology.
Given that the worldwide movement of migrants and refugees is a “sign of the times,” the situations that give rise to this reality cannot remain on the margins of theological reflection. Responding to this need is the theology of migrations, a new discipline grounded in biblical tradition and the magisterium. The author of the present booklet examines this pressing concern in depth, highlighting the five most important issues for our day and age: identity, dignity, justice, hospitality, and integration.
New issue of GUIDES written by Francesc Riera i Figueras
Francesc Riera sj was director of Cristianisme i Justícia almost from its beginning and served for 25 years before becoming director of the Cave of Saint Ignatius in Manresa. He is presently coordinating the EIDES project, a collection of booklets on Ignatian spirituality. In an effort to help with evangelization in poor neighborhoods, he has prepared five pedagogically oriented commentaries on the synoptic gospels (published in Catalan and Spanish). He has published several works on the Exercises in Ordinary Life.