We are happy to release our June/July issue of Act Justly! It is hard to believe this is our mid-year issue already! The slow days of January and Lent have sped into the cold, short days of winter. Yet, we have kept working at quite a pace, and, as always, the work of Catholics across Sydney continues to bring about the Kingdom one act of love and justice at a time.
One of the major ways many of you have been putting your faith into action these last months has been to s
tand up for more affordable housing for very low–middle income earners across the Greater Metro region. After many years of local actions, research and education and awareness raising projects Catholic communities came out in force on May 4th at Eastwood Uniting Church to meet with Planning Minister Anthony Roberts to call for the Government to create more affordable housing in our city.
This was an important assembly because there is a once in a generation moment right now to have a say in the future shape of Sydney. A major, long term planning vision is currently being created by the Greater Sydney Commission will be finalised by the end of the year and their targets for affordable housing are too low, so all the effort we can expend between now and then will encourage them to lift those targets. That is why it was such a win when the Minister unexpectedly announced on the night that he would meet with this assembly of faith, union and community organisations again, but would also bring the Greater Sydney Commission. To have the key decision makers in the room presents a significant chance to create positive change for Sydney families facing homelessness, broken marriages and families and extreme personal stress because of the cost of housing. The next assembly is likely to be in July, but stay tuned for the forthcoming date and how you can get involved!
A detailed wrap-up of the Housing Assembly will be in the forthcoming issue of the Australian Catholic Social Justice Council’s Justice Trends, so in this issue we canvass a whole host of other topics. We begin with a speech made by Pope Francis during his historic visit to Egypt in April. Following this there is an update on health campaigns for palliative care and nurses in aged care facilities—two campaigns many Sydney Catholics have worked on. We then explore Archbishop Anthony’s recent commitments to aid the efforts to eliminate human slavery and trafficking, and then we finish up with a story on a major Catholic divestment in fossil fuels—both stories highlight the great potential our Church has for showing leadership on justice issues! We also have our usual features highlighting the work of Catholics across Sydney and showcasing a variety of events that might encourage and support you further in your efforts. As always, if you have a story or good works of social justice to share please send them to us!
Thank you for all you do to bring the love and justice of Jesus to our communities.
– JPO Team