Justice and Peace in the face of the cry of migrants

on 20 Feb, 2021
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Madrid (Spain), 02/20/2021, Sr. Marta Elena Vélez, delegate JPIC Province of Spain.- Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) has been a challenge since the origins of the Congregation; Since our beginning, Marie Poussepin oriented her mission to the commitment to the poorest, to the young girls of the countryside and to the victims of persistent wars in which France was involved during her time.

Today the Congregation, motivated by the creative audacity, generosity, capacity for risk and absolute trust in God as our Foundress, who knew how to give concrete answers to her reality, is facing great demands and challenges, one of them being the commitment to JPIC.  The recent General Chapter opted for "...Justice, peace and the care for creation as a lifestyle that expresses our preferential option for the marginalized, impoverished and those unnoticed in our societies" (55th General Chapter 2019 p. 23).

To make this Chapter decision concrete, Province of Spain has chosen to collaborate with many men and women who, in words and with very concrete deeds, are working for justice and peace. (Project - Statute of the Province of Spain, p. 10).

Our presence in Madrid has several missionary grounds, one of them is our work in collaboration in the care of migrants and refugees. With a desire to work with others, we decided to join a project of the Diocese that has a large group of lay people committed to this ministry, to help this population that is becoming progressively numerous and more disadvantaged.

In our St. Alphonsus Liguori parish, we set up a small house for the reception of migrants, which we call "House of Hospitality". When they arrive, we provide them a warm welcome, a place to stay and a hot dinner that is prepared in our community and then taken to the parish; we prepare the table there and share the meal with them. If they require any medical treatment, we take them to the health centers, giving them the necessary orientation, depending on each case; we manage to find them possibility of employment..., that is to say, we try to cover their most elementary needs. In the case of families, we take the necessary steps to transfer them to other shelters in the Diocese, ensuring that the members of the same family remain united.

This is a project in which we contribute our grain of sand to make the situation of these people more humane and dignified, who, for many reasons, have been forced to leave their countries of origin, their language and culture... to go where they are nothing and know nothing.

As Dominican Sisters of the Presentation, we are certain that knowing the reality is the first step to transform it and then having the courage to face the risk...