Kargador at Dawn

Kargador at Dawn
Work in the Vineyard

Monday, January 29, 2007

Africa-Asia Dialogue & Solidarity...

One of the "hottest" issues at the 7th World Social Forum is South-South Dialogue and Solidarity. The African and Asian delegates looked back in the 50's when the African and Asian Leaders forged partnership in Bandung, Indonesia to advance their struggle for freedom against colonialism.

At the WSF, the African and Asian activists search for new politics where Africa and Asia can create institutions and movements that will provide platforms for meetings and interactions to advance their struggles against neo-liberal policies that keep these two continents poor and dominated.

Will a new Afro-Asian Solidarity emerge from this forum...? A dialogue and solidarity no longer of leaders as of old, but movements/groups and peoples/communities that will banner anew the causes of these two continents...?

The OMI Team at the 7th WSF in Nairobi, Kenya

Saturday, January 27, 2007

A Man Passionately in Love with the Poor...

The witness of Fr. Pierre is a strong call to all to live simply and to be in solidarity with the poor.

The world mourns his passing away... and his witness of faith and love remains etched in the hearts of men and women who, likewise, have cast their lots with the poor of this world...

World Mourned the Passing of a Man Passionately Committed to the Poor...

One of France's most revered figures, Abbe Pierre died on Monday, aged 94.

President Jacques Chirac and Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin were among the mourners on Friday.

The Roman Catholic priest was France's leading champion of the destitute and homeless, topping a national popularity poll year after year.

Abbe Pierre will be buried in a private cemetery in the Normandy village of Esteville, on a day of "national homage".

The last Frenchman to be honoured in such a way was the environmentalist and inventor, Jacques Cousteau, in 1997.

Example for nation

Former President Valery Giscard d'Estaing and Paris mayor Bertrand Delanoe were among the mourners, as were cultural celebrities including Robert Hossein, Laetitia Hallyday, Jean Reno and Lambert Wilson.

Earlier mourners paid their respects before his open coffin in the 17th-Century Val-de-Grace church in Paris, beside the hospital where he died.

"Abbe Pierre showed us the way of the heart, of generosity, of the spirit of rebellion to help the most vulnerable," Mr Chirac said.

"His message must stay alive in each of us and it is up to all of us to follow it through."

Abbe Pierre was the codename he used - abbe is a title traditionally given to priests - during his work with the French Resistance, smuggling Jews out of occupied France during World War II.

Born Henri Groues, he founded the Emmaus association in 1953, and fought for a law to stop parliament expelling tenants during the winter months after a freezing spell hit the country.

He demanded the nation act when he went on the radio in the winter of 1954, highlighting the case of a three-month-old baby who had frozen to death in inadequate housing and a woman who had died on the streets clutching an eviction order.

In the subsequent decades, he continued his tireless campaign for the destitute - and his hostels started to appear around the world in the 1970s.

Dhikr for the 4th week of the year (C)

Text: “When the people in the synagogue heard this, they were all filled with fury. They rose up, drove him out of the town, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their town had been built, to hurl him down headlong.” (Luke 4: 28-29)

Meditation: Do we, also, drive Jesus out of our life if he does not conform to our wishes and caprices…? Beware!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Belfast Wall... becoming irrelevant?

The Belfast Wall is a strong testimony of the great divide in North Ireland between the Protestant and Catholic Communities. The Good Friday Peace Agreement, though not perfect, is a step forward to make the Wall irrelevant.

We need to pray that more walls that divide and separate crumble... And we, also pray that people NEED NOT build wall anymore...

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Peace Process in Southern Philippines...

The Chair of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), His Excellency Murad Ibrahim, with his closest aides took time to share some of the highlights of the Peace Process in Southern Philippines.

The prospect for signing a principled Peace Agreement between the Philippine Government and the MILF is great.

We continue to pray for lasting Peace in Mindnao...

Saturday, January 13, 2007

International Peace Monitors in S. Philippines...

The Chief of the International Peace Monitors in Southern Philippines briefs Fr. Jun on the status of GRP and MILF compliance to the the Ceasefire Agreement.
The presence of the International Peace Monitors enhances the strict compliance to the Ceasefire Agreement.

Peace Making is to navigate skillfully the often perilous water...

The MILF Vice Chair on Political Affairs, Hon. Ja'afar Ghazzali, shares some insights and reflections on the MIndanao Peace Process with Fr. Jun Mercado, OMI, former Chair of the Independent Ceasefire Monitor in Mindanao.

Peace Making often means wider consultation and discussion on issues that are at the roots of rebellion...

Friday, January 12, 2007

Fiesta at the Parish Square...

Frs. Ponpon and Jun at the Parish Square for the blessing of the I-Watch. Cultural presentation and the release of ballons followed the official launching of the video documentary program.
Public officials and parishioners lent their support to the historic birth of a video documentary sutdio in Upi.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Dhikr for the Feast of the Lord's Baptism (C)

Text: John answered them all, saying, "I am baptizing you with water, but one mightier than I is coming. I am not worthy to loosen the thongs of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fan is in his hand to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire." (Luke 3: 16-17)

Meditation: The challenge of our Baptism is to stand as witnesses that we have, indeed, received the “Baptism of the Holy Spirit and Fire”… passing through his “winnowing fan and clearing his “threshing floor”…



I - Watch Video Documentary in Defense of the Poor...

The Upi Municipal Mayor, Hon. Ramon Piang, assisted by Sr. Rose Susan Montejo, OND Superior General cut the ribbon marking the official inauguration of I-Watch, a Video Documentary Program in Defense of the Poor and the Environment.

Fr. Ponpon Vasquez, OMI is the Director and Trainer of I-Watch. Fr. Jun Mercado, OMI, the former JPIC Director in Rome blessed the office.

Local and national partners, including representatives of mainstream media were present at the historic inauguration...