Office of Advocacy and Justice Updates




Catholic Campaign for Human Development Collection November 18

Next week’s Collection for the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) needs your support. CCHD was founded to end the cycle of poverty in America by funding organizations that help individuals help themselves. With the tradition of improving education, housing situations, and economic development, CCHD continues to make a positive impact in our community. In the Orlando Diocese there are three organizations that work to help people get out of poverty:  PEACE (Polk Ecumenical Council for Empowerment); FAIT H (Fighting Injustice Toward Harmony); and FOCUS (Federation of Congregations United to Serve). Fight poverty in America. Defend human dignity. Give to the CCHD Collection.  For more information see:


CRS Million Meal Packing Event – Sunday, November 18

Take the CRS Year of Faith Challenge: October 11, 2012, marks the beginning of the Year of Faith, a period during which Pope Benedict XVI has asked us to proclaim the good news with our actions. You proclaim the love of Christ when you feed hungry people, when you give shelter to our homeless brothers and sisters, and when you lift up those who are struggling.  With your support, the work of Catholic Relief Services answers the Gospel’s call to serve the poor. We could not do this lifesaving work without you. That is why we are inviting you to deepen your commitment: Donate here


Join us on January 19, 2013 for the March for Life St. Augustine!

One of the main responsibilities of our office is to spread awareness about life issues. We are here to defend life from conception to natural death. As our recent popes have consistently declared, the right to life is the most fundamental of human rights. As Christians we are called to evangelize and defend the weakest among us. I am sure we can all agree that the unborn are the weakest and least protected among us. We urge you to accompany us on January 19th, 2013 as we participate in the March for Life (by bus) in St. Augustine. Registration information here.


CRS Fair Trade for Advent:

This Advent/Christmas season, enrich your family’s traditions with fair trade. Fair trade is much more than a fair wage. Fair trade helps preserve traditions and cultures for new generations.

The intricate swirling designs on these plates are hand painted by artisans in Vietnam, where this technique has spanned over 600 years. Your purchase helps keep this time-honored skill alive. Plus, every purchase contributes to the CRS Fair Trade Fund.

Browse the Holiday sections to find a special accent that will bring warmth and tradition to your home. Every item, whether it be a gift or something for yourself, is sure to enrich and inspire families around the world.
Shop today!

Seasonal Divine Chocolate

Shop new season Divine Chocolate and stock up on your favorites!

For a treat that truly celebrates the meaning of Christmas, purchase Divine Advent Calendars. This holiday season, with every purchase of an Advent Calendar, a school notebook will be donated to children in Kuapa Kokoo’s schools and communities. With one simple purchase, you’ll make the future brighter for children in Ghana.

To Order
Phone: (800) 685.7572
Fax: (888) 294.6376
Mail: Work of Human Hands
500 Main Street
New Windsor, MD 21776  


Finding Hope Amidst Environmental Destruction

In the midst of continuing serious suffering by so many in the Northeast, there are a number of heartwarming stories.  These should provide us all with some hope that a movement of hope is building amidst environmental destruction.

From an announcement about a major scholars’ conference on Pope Benedict’s teaching on the environment to a thoughtful reflection by a Canadian Jesuit and from a sobering study by North American and European Catholic relief and development agencies to news from Australia about the Coalition’s growing global reach, climate change and responses to it are more and more on the minds of the Catholic community. 


A Catholic Consultation on Environmental Justice and Climate Change

From November 8-10,  the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and The Catholic University of America are co-sponsoring A Catholic Consultation on Environmental Justice and Climate Change: Assessing Pope Benedict XVI’s Ecological Vision for the Catholic Church in the United States. 

Twelve scholars from across the United States will share papers examining some important questions including:

  • What is the substance and implications of recent papal teaching on the environment and creation, on the links between natural ecology and human ecology, on solidarity and justice?
  • How might Catholics view environmental justice and climate change in light of its teaching on cosmology, the sacraments, etc?
  • How might this theological and ethical exploration be applied to US Catholic Church’s preaching, liturgy, catechesis, and social ministries?

The conference will begin with a speech by Most Reverend Bernard Unabali, bishop of the Diocese of Bougainville, Papua New Guinea, who will reflect on his experience of assisting the resettlement of climate change refugees from the Carteret Islands and were featured in the film Sun Come Up.  Also attending will be bishops William Skylstad of Spokane (retired), Stephen Blaire of Stockton, Frank Dewane of Venice, Donald Kettler of Fairbanks, John Ricard of Pensacola-Tallahassee (retired), and Jaime Soto of Sacramento.


Solutions Needed for Agriculture Impacted by Climate Change

The International Cooperation for Development and Solidarity (or CIDSE, an international alliance of 16 Catholic development agencies from Europe and North America and working in over 120 countries and territories) has republished a new report on the connection between agriculture and climate change.  In Agriculture: From Problem to Solution, CIDSE says we need to redirect agriculture to serve its social, economic and ecological function in a sustainable way.

The document presents CIDSE’s views on the guiding principles that should govern agricultural and climate policies and it makes detailed recommendations to both the UN Committee on World Food Security (CFS, which met 15-20 October in Rome, Italy) and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC, which will gather at the end of November in Doha, Qatar).


Canadian Jesuit on Human and Natural Ecology

In Stewardship and Discernment: A Human Ecology Correctly Understood, Santiago Rodriguez, SJ reflects on the intersection of human and natural ecology. 

In the article, Rodriguez writes,Through prayer and reflection, we are presented with the disturbing consequences of climate change and environmental destruction; they are present now, and shall remain in the future. These can understandably lead to feelings of fear, guilt and shame; nevertheless, we should never react out of fear or helplessness. Our response should always be rooted in our love of God and for God’s creation.

He continues: Above all, the environmental crisis is a spiritual crisis. We may experience resistance to change our way of being through our prayers, reflections and discussions; nevertheless, we are all called to move beyond doubts and indifference to take responsibility for our home, the earth. This is a crisis that calls for conversion and reconciliation.