Burma is our neighbour: Caritas

Caritas Australia CEO Jack de Groot has called for an urgent and decisive response to hold Burma's military junta to account.

In a statement for this weekend's Social Justice Sunday, he welcomed the Bishops' Social Justice Sunday Statement. The Statement is titled: "Who is my neighbour? Australia’s role as a global citizen".

De Groot congratulated the Bishops' on the statement.

"The Catholic Church is fundamentally concerned with justice and supporting the most marginalised and vulnerable in our world."

He said the courageous act we've seen in the powerful uprising led by "our Buddhist brothers and sisters" in Burma is in fact "a call to all of us to act".

"For too long we have failed to support the people of Burma in their struggle against the oppressive military regime which has ruled there for four and a half decades."

"The protests are driven by the spiritual leaders in Burma, the Buddhist monks and nuns," he said. "Their hour of need is great, and as part of the international community we as Australians and our Government need to stand with them in their struggle for justice."

Jack De Groot said the situation in Burma is extremely dire. Rape and forced labor are sanctioned by the dictatorship, and Australia "must use all its influence to bring about change".

Meanwhile Hobart's Archbishop Adrian Doyle put the parable of the Good Samaritan into the context of a globalised world.

He said in a statement: "In the 21st century this basic truth is even more evident as war, hunger, poverty, climate change and disease throw the lives of millions into turmoil".

Social Justice Sunday – Burma is our neighbour (Caritas Australia, Media Release, 27/9/07)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Caritas Australia
Myanmar (Wikipedia)

Burma bishops call for prayer (CathNews, 26/9/07)
2000 gather in Burma cathedral for peace prayer (CathNews, 31/10/06)

28 Sep 2007