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Let the Prince of Peace reign

The Catholic Commission for Social Justice (CCSJ) is urging citizens to be Peacebuilders of the country and world this Christmas.

During this season of Advent awaiting the birth of the Christ-child, the Prince of Peace, the CCSJ asks people to remember, “we must not be armchair Christians waiting passively”. It said Advent is a time of active hope, that the living Christ, living among the people will strengthen to save beloved T&T and world which are scarred by violence and discord; and God will fill hearts with His mercy, love, compassion and forgiveness to live as honest/upright citizens.

The release appealed for people to heed the advice issued by Archbishop Joseph Harris in his Pastoral Letter, Return to Hospitality, and reflect on whether they are living in silos or in community. It called for reflection, “Ask yourself: “What can I do to build peace, for example, starting with myself and extending to those in my home/family/neighbourhood/workplace/school/university?”

The release urged citizens not to be daunted by the enormous task of building peace. It quoted St Teresa of Calcutta: “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” Some suggestions were given on ways to demonstrate care for others and the environment.

  1. Pray. T&T and the world need prayers that all wars and hostilities, including runaway crime in T&T, will cease and that people will turn their weapons into ploughshares.  Pray that the Christ-child will touch the hearts of those in authority and inspire them to govern wisely and to use the resources of the nation to build the common good.
  2. Parishes should form befriending teamsthat will be active throughout the year. Befriend and build caring relationships in communities with the poor, homeless, depressed, stressed, lonely, isolated, and/or have lost loved ones. The strength of the nation depends on the strength of its people. Therefore, the mental health of citizens should be of concern also.
  3. T&T is an aging society. Reach out to the elderly during this season, particularly those who may have no one to visit them. Share some Christmas cheer with them. Discover the talents of senior citizens and draw on these when seeking to build a knowledge-based society.
  4. Advent is a good time to take action to address child abuse, domestic abuse and strife in families. This is a time of healing also, so let’s all make an effort to reconcile with those with whom we have conflict.
  5. Don’t drink and drive, and be your brother’s/sister’s keeper by encouraging others to do abide by the law also.
  6. With all the Christmas wrapping, empty bottles etc., remember ecological/environmental justice and dispose of your garbage responsibly.

Choose to be Peacebuilders. The release wished everyone a happy and holy Christmas and for the Prince of Peace reign in hearts always.

For further information contact Leela Ramdeen, Chair, CCSJ. Tel: 299 8945.