WelCom March 2023
A Justice Peace Development and Ecology Commission (JPDEC) is a commission appointed by the bishop in each diocese to promote concerns about justice, peace, development and ecology in line with the Gospel.
It can operate as an advisory body to the bishop and it can take initiatives directly on JPDE issues. For example, to advocate, influence policy making and effect practical action and solutions on key social justice and human rights issues in the community.
Ideally the JPDEC works with and advises parishes to ensure parishes are supported, such as with Caritas resourcing, to be able to respond independently on important issues.
Palmerston North’s JPDEC went into abeyance from August 2020. However, since then, two ‘think tanks’ comprising about 12 members who are representative of all the geographical areas of the diocese and representative of Māori, Administrator, priest, deacon, religious and laity, have met twice a year to resolve the future of the JPDEC for the diocese.
The group unanimously agreed the diocese should have a JPDEC and over the last 12 months a steering group has been working on its formation.
The commitment, presence and action of a JPDEC in every diocese is very important.
‘Action on behalf of justice and participation in the transformation of the world fully appear to us as a constitutive dimension of the preaching of the Gospel, or, in other words, of the Church’s mission for the redemption of the human race and its liberation from every oppressive situation.’ – Para 6, Catholic Bishops 1971 World Synod meeting.
The steering group wants to hear from anyone interested in becoming part of the PN JPDEC; and, if not at a diocesan level, then to participate and contribute locally to their own parish or regional area.
At a local level, they would be involved in ‘Reading the Signs of the Times’, reflecting on them in the light of the Gospel and taking appropriate transformative action.
Further down the track the Commission would envision reaching out to other Christian church groups and Inter-Faith groups – to share and learn from one another in areas of justice, peace, development and ecology.
Please contact email@example.com for more information and to let the steering group know if you would like to be involved with PN JPDEC developments.