The International JPIC Committee proposes a prayer and a reflection grid prepared by the Province of Canada.
visual display : A globe, a crucifix to remind us of the suffering Body of Christ: 6 candles or tea lights that will be carried one at a time at the prayer of the faithful.
Context of the social reality in Canada
Canada’s history was fashioned by a great number of determined women who strived to respect and promote equality of the sexes in Canada. These women defended a number of human rights that have become the fundamental Canadian values- right to vote in provincial 1and federal 2elections, the right to property, the right to a just and fair salary, and finally the right to recognition as a “person” 3 before the law.
The Canadian law on the rights of the person and the Canadian Chart of the rights and liberties are two of the principal aspects of the law protecting women against discrimination based on sex, age, matrimonial status and more.
Sexual exploitation exists here in Canada and affects mostly the First Nations community (women and girls assassinated or gone missing). A specific market targeting young indigenous women and girls at a very early age, makes them most vulnerable.
Canada should be embarrassed for the treatment given to migrants and seasonal workers. In the past, these treatments were denounced and claims were made concerning the Canadian laws on immigration and seasonal work. The Coronavirus pandemic accentuates the growing number of abuse imposed on seasonal workers from abroad. Indeed, working and inhumane conditions are brought in the light: cramped and unhealthy living quarters, lack of food, hot water, rest area and proper protective equipment.
Considering these evils that afflict us at home and abroad, let us implore Christ Wisdom for those who suffer unjustly and let us plead Him to have pity on all victims and on us, on our helplessness, our lack of courage and even our indifference.
Hymn: Kyrie Eleison or Lord have mercy
Biblical reading – choose one of the following texts or both
33. When an alien resides with you in your land, do not molest him. You shall treat the alien who resides with you no differently than the natives born among you; have the same love for him as for yourself; for you too were once aliens in the land of Egypt. I, the Lord, am your God. Do not act dishonestly in using measures of length or weight or capacity. (Leviticus 19, 33-35)
07 But the Lord said, “I have witnessed the affliction of my people in Egypt and have heard their cry of complaint against their slave drivers, so I know well what they are suffering. Therefore I have come down to rescue them from the hands of the Egyptians and lead them out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey, the country of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. So indeed the cry of the Israelites has reached me, and I have truly noted that the Egyptians are oppressing them. Come now! (Exodus 3, 7-10)
Our founders/ personal reflection and sharing
• Share a word, an event, an action or an attitude from Montfort and Marie-Louise that find an echo in one or the other of the above texts. How does it challenge me to go forth? (i.e. Wisdom is for man, and man is for Wisdom) (LEW 64). Open to Jesus-Christ. Never the cross without Jesus, nor Jesus without the Cross! (172) If I were cloth, I would give myself to the poor. Take good care of the poor.
• How do I consider the victims of human trafficking, how do I consider those who do the trafficking?
• According to my personal reality at this time in my life, what action can I take?
Symbolic action : After each intention, a participant places a lit candle in the visual display.
Let us present those who suffer from human trafficking and ask that we may become in some way instruments of transformation.
For victims: let us pray for the victims: so that they will find peace, comfort, security and the dignity they are entitled to.
Ɽ. ♫ Lord,have mercy
For traffickers: Let us pray for traffickers to be delivered from the lure of gain and power and made aware of the wrong they are causing to others whose lives are as precious as their own. Ɽ
For clients and exploiters: Let us pray for clients and exploiters to be delivered from their unhealthy sexual appetite and be made aware that they deprive others of their dignity. Ɽ
For governments: Let us pray that governments strive to promote peaceful and inclusive societies, and provide means to attain justice for all. Ɽ
For religious communities: Let us pray that religious communities find the courage to denounce violence and injustice done to women and children, and be ready to stand for those without a voice. Ɽ
For all people of good will: Let us pray for people of good will, to find the wisdom and the courage to take action whenever the dignity is threatened. Ɽ
Let us pray for victims of human trafficking who are without salary or home since the spread of Covid-19. Lord we cry out against this degrading practice and pray that it ceases. Give these people courage and through your promises console the hearts of our sisters to witness your goodness and your loving presence. Allow us the wisdom to stand in solidarity with them so that together we may progress in our walk to gain a greater freedom, this precious gift that you granted each human being. In you we place our hope as you save us from our distress
HYMN : Theme : Mission
1 The right to vote was granted in 1916 in three provinces (Alberta, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan). The other provinces gradually followed. The province of Quebec was the last in 1940.2 Canadian women, except the Indigenous and Asian obtain the right to vote at the 1918 federal elections.
3 In 1929, by a decree of the Supreme Court of Canada, women are recognized as « persons ».