The “Doctrine of Discovery” and Terra Nullius: A Catholic Response

Source: http://www.cccb.ca/site/eng/media-room/statements-a-letters/4446-catholic-responses-to-truth-and-reconciliation-commission-call-to-action-48-and-questions-regarding-the-doctrine-of-discovery

The Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops regarding the Catholic responds to the Doctrine of Discovery.

The text considers and repudiates illegitimate concepts and principles used by Europeans to justify the seizure of land previously held by Indigenous Peoples and often identified by the terms Doctrine of Discovery and terra nullius.

Both documents appeal to all Catholics — laity, members of institutes of consecrated life and of societies of apostolic life, deacons, priests, and Bishops — to make seven commitments in order to “continue to walk together with Indigenous Peoples in building a more just society where their gifts and those of all people are nurtured and honoured.” These commitments include:

  • Working with Catholic educational institutions and formation programs in telling the history and experience of Indigenous Peoples
  • Working with seminaries and other formation centres to promote a “culture of encounter” by including the history of the Indian Residential Schools and of Canadian missionary work with its “weaknesses and strengths”
  • Encouraging partnerships between Indigenous groups and health care facilities
  • Encouraging a restorative justice model within the criminal justice system
  • Supporting the national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women
  • Deepening relationships, dialogue and collaboration with Indigenous People
  • Inviting Catholic parishes and institutions to become better acquainted with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

March 31, 2016

©2016 Mr. D. Sader | World Religions | All Rights Reserved

Ecology of the Heart

Throughout Laudato Si, Pope Francis returns to the contrast between dominion and domination, of stewardship andownership. He tells us that our concern for the planet is an empty one if it does not take into account ourr responsibility and obligation to our poorest and least acknowledged neighbor. Our call is not to make things better for us, but for everyone. Since God is creator of all, God loves all. So must we.

Ponder
How can I become selfless enough to call everyone I meet a brother or sister?

Pray
God of creation, it is not always easy to see you in others. When people are downright nasty and hard to help, give me a heart to see through their anger and fear to your grace shining in them.

©2016 Mr. D. Sader | World Religions | All Rights Reserved

We are all one

All living species are tied together in one greaat, interdependent network.

The smallest subatomic particles are joined together in a cosmic dance, and evey living thing has evolved together on this world. There is no aspect of this amazing creation – chemical, biological, or material – thatis not interconnected. Pope Francis says that our failure to note this in times past has ledto today’s problems. Our embrace now of how crucial every part is to every other part is will lead to a positive change.

Ponder
Where do I need to deepen my faith so that I may start to recognize our interconnectedness?

Pray
God of creation, help me to see your glory in every part of creation, even where I’d least expect to find it.And if I see it being harmedorclouded, help me to reveal it all.

©2016 Mr. D. Sader | World Religions | All Rights Reserved