Are we doing enough?
For perhaps the first time in our history, the leaders of both our major political parties have come from our schools. So perhaps we have a responsibility for what we have given the country, in the form of the leadership of its two major parties.
Aside from being educated in our schools, it sometimes seems the only thing they have in common is the slogan “border protection.”
Evangelli Gaudium says in paragraph 54, (while talking about the economic system rather than politics, but nonetheless, it seems relevant):
Almost without being aware of it, we end up being incapable of feeling compassion at the outcry of the poor, weeping for other people’s pain, and feeling a need to help them, as though all this were someone else’s responsibility and not our own.
During the last week, it seems to me the only politician I heard from was Sarah Hanson-Young of the Greens, from whom came this plea:
I am not necessarily a fan of Ms Hanson-Young but I suspect that she was not educated at one of our schools and that history will judge her as having been on the right side.
Paragraph 190 of Evangelii Gaudium says:
Sometimes it is a matter of hearing the cry of entire peoples, the poorest peoples of the earth, since “peace is founded not only on respect for human rights, but also on respect for the rights of peoples”. Sadly, even human rights can be used as a justification for an inordinate defense of individual rights or the rights of the richer peoples. With due respect for the autonomy and culture of every nation, we must never forget that the planet belongs to all mankind and is meant for all mankind; the mere fact that some people are born in places with fewer resources or less development does not justify the fact that they are living with less dignity. It must be reiterated that “the more fortunate should renounce some of their rights so as to place their goods more generously at the service of others”. To speak properly of our own rights, we need to broaden our perspective and to hear the plea of other peoples and other regions than those of our own country. We need to grow in a solidarity which “would allow all peoples to become the artisans of their destiny”, since “every person is called to self-fulfilment”.
Surveys nowadays show Australia has one of the highest standards of living in the world.
Should we be speaking out more on what we can and should be doing in the current humanitarian crisis at sea?
Evangelii Gaudium in paragraph 145 says:
Consequently, no one can demand that religion should be relegated to the inner sanctum of personal life, without influence on societal and national life, without concern for the soundness of civil institutions, without a right to offer an opinion on events affecting society...….
…..We love this magnificent planet on which God has put us, and we love the human family which dwells here, with all its tragedies and struggles, its hopes and aspirations, its strengths and weaknesses. The earth is our common home and all of us are brothers and sisters. If indeed “the just ordering of society and of the state is a central responsibility of politics”, the Church “cannot and must not remain on the sidelines in the fight for justice”.