UN Climate Change Conference Paris 2015 (COP 21)

The UN Climate Change Conference opened in Paris today November 30th and will continue until December 11th, 2015.  Yolanda 3Yolanda Sanchez from GSIJP Office Geneva is representing us all in Paris.  She will attend events organized by NGOs and will share some of her experiences in due course.    Keep updated with the website

I am sure that many of you have seen on Facebook the photographs of 10,000 shoes that have been placed.  One photograph that I have taken from  Alex Andreou is this one entitled the ‘Paris shoe march.’  Shoes

A disturbing report of events on November 29th has been provided by IBON. See IBON report on Climate Justice.  Saturday and Sunday we witnessed marches all around the globe.   An estimated 785,000 people globally gathered for the BIGGEST Climate March in history! I attended the New York march.  Check the photos here for both marches   Some quick glimpses of New York March.

The Global Catholic Climate Movement

NY Climate March

Raging Grannies and their Daughters

Good Shepherd orange countries around the world

Good Shepherd Sisters and Mission Partners orange countries around the world.  They not only orange for one day but they work tirelessly for 365 days addressing and ending gender based violence through service provision, awareness and ensuring that ‘no girl or woman is left behind.’

Review the public service announcement ‘Behind Closed Doors’ created in Malaysia in English, Tamil, Malay, Chinese.  See here

Visit their Facebook page and see groups from Kuala Lumpur, to Sabah to Ipoh – Malaysia on Facebook

Malaysia   Orange The World in YouthPREP Centre, Sabah

Close by in Thailand 1000’s  are engaged – Read moreSisters Thailand

Thaniland 2

Thailand 3

See Sutisa Utalun’s Facebook page for more news  Great displays of color and men and boys are engaged!

Mercy Sisters International had an event on Monday November 23rd at the UN, NY to mark the 16 days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence. It was facilitated by Angela Reed from Australia who had done a study on trafficked women and girls in the Philippines.  Flyer advertising the event The link to some photographs from the event

Are you following us on our new Facebook Page Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd- Justice  Peace  Facebook  and Twitter Account @gsijp

Maryknoll offer a series of reflection on Climate Change

Here are three of them.  A two pager reflection-study-prayer guide.  You may want to use them for your prayer and reflection in the lead up to the UN Climate Summit in Paris beginning on November 30th.

Reflection 1 reflects on the effect of rising sea levels on the people on Bangladesh. Reflection Guide 1

Reflection 2  extremes weather conditions with a focus on the Philippines.  Reflection Guide 2

Reflection 3  ‘Wherever food is thrown out it is as if it were stolen from the table of the poor…’  Pope Francis Laudato Si   Reflection Guide 3

See more information at Maryknoll Website    Thanks to Maryknoll for their sharing!

Path to Paris logo for salsa

COP 21 website English and French   There are 4 sections Learn, Act, Follow, Come.


More Reflections on ‘Laudato Si’

This is a follow up to the posting on October 15th where I posted the first 4 reflections on Lauddato Si.  They are prepared in both English and French.  The second set of 4 have been prepared.  These are done by African Europe Faith Justice Network  See French and English  The website is a great resource with a spirituality and action emanating from faith and justice.
laudato_si 2

For ease of access here are the reflection for Sessions 5,6,7 and 8.  E for English E 5E 6E 7, and E 8; and F for French F 5F 6F7, and F 8

These refection are very helpful if you are following the Climate Conference that will be held in Paris at the end of the month.  E 5 invites us to look at nature with different eyes and recognise the unique beauty and dignity of each creature which, by its very existence, praises God and gives joy to humanity.

E 6 reflects on  Pope Francis’ development of a new and profound theology of creation which looks at human beings as part of nature and as God’s responsible co-workers in creation. There can be no well-grounded ecology without a sound anthropology.  E 7 notes that nobody has definite answers to the many open questions how to control climate change or how to shape a truly sustainable development for all.  Pope Francis in his Encyclical ‘Laudato Si’ does not offer final solutions to these huge problems. He rather invites all stake holders to enter into a transparent interdisciplinary dialogue and to search for ways out of the crisis leaving aside all particular group interests but focussing on the global common good.

E 8 reflection has reference to the Parish Climate Summit.   The numerous climate summits in the last 20 years have not succeeded to reach a binding agreement for all countries which defines ‘common and differentiated responsibilities’. Pope Francis sees the reason for this in a lack of ethics in international relations, the fight for national interests to the detriment of the global common good, the lack of effective international institutions and the dominance of the financial markets over politics. Will the Paris Climate Summit pick up the challenge and live up to its responsibility to future generations?

NCP Primer ebook front cover


A background to previous conferences can be followed in this Primer prepared by IBON.  Here is the direct link IBON Primer on a New Climate Protocol  There are 87 pages with 5 Chapters.  The topics are interesting and some of the jargon we hear and read in the media is explained.  The first Chapter reviews Climate Change the Long-term View.  Chapter 2 looks at the Rio Mandate and the Koyoto Protocol.  Chapter 3 is interesting creating awareness of False Climate Solutions.  Chapter 4 has a draft of the Paris Climate Treaty and the last chapter presents some Real Climate Solution.

 To conclude here is an article linking climate and peace authored by Michael T. Klare, a professor of peace and world security studies at Hampshire College.   ‘Why the Paris Climate Summit is also a Peace Conference’ Read more

Infographic: Violence against women

The International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women is on November 25 and is followed by the Sixteen Days of Activism against Gender Violence.  Violence Against Women is global pandemic in many forms.  See the  Infographic: Violence against women for more information.

In 2013 the office published the results of a survey of services provided globally by Good Shepherd Sisters in 24 countries.  This is in 3 languages on the website English French and Spanish

Ending Violence 34

Outcome Document CSW 57  Elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls is available in all 6 languages of the UN and is well worth reviewing.  It will be reviewed during CSW 60 in March 2016.

What has your country to celebrate in terms of ending gender based violence and what tis the more that needs to be done?


Here is the link to the tool kit for the 16 days campaign  Toolkit

2015 Call to Action: “Orange the World: End Violence against Women and Girls”  Good ideas in the toolkit from engage your Government to orange cyber space!  Use orange on your Facebook page and use the hashtags  #orangetheworld and #16days

Transforming our World: 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goal 5 Target 5.2 ‘Eliminate all forms of violence against all women and girls in the public and private spheres, including trafficking and sexual and other types of exploitation.’

Check out our position papers Prostitution of Women and Girls  ‘The prostitution of women and girls is a chronic form of gender violence that has been structurally embedded in societies over the centuries. Good Shepherd’s position echoes the UN 1949 Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others “that prostitution is incompatible with the dignity and worth of the human person, and endangers the welfare of the individual, the family and the community…” Prostitution is, by its nature, exploitative and is never part of a global decent work agenda.’