Welcome to the Through Shadows newsletter for June and July 2023.
I’m going to start with the most recent event – the Congregation Gathering held in Cabra from 17th to 21st July. What a pleasure it was to meet so many of you and to hear your stories and passion for education, justice and ministry.
Pictured above are Sisters from Argentina, Belfast and South Africa, with the Climate Justice Candle loaned to the Congregation for the week of the Gathering by Eco Congregation Ireland. The candle was lit by Sr Kathleen Egan and a prayer for the Earth was read by Sr Susie O’Rawe.
Just as Ireland has experienced the wettest July on record, wildfires rage in Southern Europe, New Orleans faces a dangerous heatwave and South Africa has had the most blackout days in history this year with daily power cuts from its ageing coal-fired power stations extending to almost 10 hours a day … the many challenges facing our planet and its people.
But as well as urgent action for climate justice, hope is needed, because hope battles apathy. So, this edition of Through Shadows starts by bringing you some good news stories:
Brazil Amazon deforestation drops 34 per cent under Lula
Deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon dropped by a third during the first six months of President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s term, according to government satellite data. Read more.
High seas treaty: historic deal to protect international waters finally reached at the UN
After almost 20 years of talks, United Nations member states agreed in recent months on a legal framework for the protection of the almost two-thirds of the ocean that lies outside of national boundaries. Read more.
French to get bonus to make do and mend clothes
In July, it was announced that France is to launch a bonus scheme to persuade consumers to repair their clothes and worn-out shoes rather than throwing them away and buying new ones. From October, the bonus will come in the form of a discount worth between €6 (£5) and €25 (£21) per repair. Read more.