Social justice gathering – ‘truly a gift’

May 10, 2023 in Featured News, News

The first gathering of the Irish Jesuit Province’s social justice apostolates took place in the Arrupe Room, Milltown Park, Dublin on Wednesday, 3 May 2023. A day of networking and showcasing work and activities, the gathering was a chance to get to know one another and create opportunities for collaboration and support.

The event was opened by Terry Howard SJ, Socius to the Provincial, who shared his excitement for the day as it was a chance to really focus on the work that placed ‘justice’ at its centre. His speech was followed by Brendan MacPartlin SJ, the Social Justice Delegate, who encouraged all groups to make the most of the day ahead and to reflect on their work.

The gathering event was divided into two halves. The morning was dedicated to networking as attendees visited different stalls, mingled and were given the chance to meet and talk about each other’s work in the Province. In the afternoon, attendees broke into discussion groups to talk all things social justice and groups were divided into topics ranging from HR and Finance, to communications, care for our common home and walking alongside the poor.

The discussion groups was a place for brainstorming ideas and created potential partnerships between different apostolates and the event closed with a reflection from Leon O’Giolláin SJ who spoke of Ignatian ethos in the workplace – the first event of its kind for the Province, the day was about friendship, peer learning and looking to the future as a united team.

The attendees included: The Messenger, ACRE, the Iona migrant support service, JRS Ireland, An Timire, JCFJ & JUST Ballymun.

The event was organised by Emer Kerrigan from Irish Jesuits International, a development charity also in attendance on the day. Talking about the event, Emer said the day was: “truly a gift and an opportunity to listen to one another and experience the richness of our work in solidarity”.

It was unanimous that such a gathering, although the first, would certainly not be last!