Justice and Peace Europe: a new focus on the care of Creation
Final Statement of International Workshop of the Conference of European Justice and Peace Commissions from 22 – 24 in Taizé/France
Delegates from 21 Commissions of Conference of European Justice & Peace Commissions (Justice and Peace Europe) came together from 22 - 24 September of 2017 for their annual International Workshop. Their meeting took place, appropriately in view of the theme “Spiritual Roots and Political Fruits: Pilgrimage for Justice & Peace and Care of Creation”, in Taizé, where the ecumenical Christian community welcomed and supported them in their deliberations also with their prayers. The meeting marked the 50th anniversary of the creation of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, which has been renamed and fused with two other Pontifical Councils last year into the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development. Towards the end of the meeting participants and Taizé brothers held a moving symbolic action in connection with the Season of Creation. It consisted of planting a tree with soils affected by environmental issues or human actions from the different European countries. The international workshop finally concluded by a to the Abbey of Cluny, which was one of the living sources of medieval Christianity. Therefore the international workshop was an occasion to return to the spiritual roots of the Justice and Peace movement and to re-energise its work in the light of the many changes, which have taken place since its inception. The delegates adopted the following final statement:
At the end of the International Workshop and in light of what we have heard and reflected on, we have adopted the following declaration, in which we set out our vision for the future work of our Commissions:
1. To renew, re-enthuse and strengthen our work by remembering and returning to our spiritual roots as we go forward in service to our world.
2. To work with each other and with the help of our Episcopal Conferences for the greater visibility and promotion of the work of Justice & Peace in the church.
3. To develop fruitful working structures with and within and through our new Dicastery for the achievement of the Common Good.
4. To work in dialogue with others, including in particular our Christian sisters and brothers, to identify, understand and respond to the problems, conflicts and needs of our world.
5. To develop further our actions for the care of creation in the light of our understanding of Christian anthropology, the principles of Catholic Social Teaching and the teaching of Laudato Si´.
6. To develop long term strategies for our work, including provision for education and continuity.
7. To be the rooster on the roof for our church, for our communities and for the world.
We highly value the conjunction of spirituality, lived during these days, with the work of Justice & Peace and propose future meetings where these two aspects will be present, as well as the realization of the activities of our network in an ecumenical and interreligious way.
Finally, we would like to express our gratitude for the welcome and support we have received all the time from Taizé brothers and volunteers.
Taizé, 25 September 2017