2022 has arrived! and 2021 is now history. It has been a most difficult time for all nations and people as we continue to face Covid 19 and its various strains. I am certainly struck by how nature can still bring us to a standstill, whether it is natural disasters such as forest fires, heavy rainfall and flooding or hurricanes and tornadoes or new diseases or infections such as Covid. What can we do? How can we overcome it?
I am afraid I don’t have the answers to these questions, except to continue to do what we do best. Care for those persons in need. Advocate for change. Share our knowledge and experience with others.
As I continue my personal and Vincentian journey related to Indigenous Peoples in Canada and indeed North America, there is much to be learned about the importance of the concept the collective common good of all people with one another and with all living creatures and nature. This Indigenous rooted holistic approach to one another and nature is so close to our own Vincentian values as well as the teachings we find in Laudato Si.
If we can truly appreciate the fact that we are all connected to one another and nature, we may find some real hope for the future. This inter connected understanding is also the basis for systemic change, which every Vincentian should embrace. If we are to ever realize an improvement in our number of persons living in poverty, homeless or without hope, there is a need for action and advocacy. If every government could take the positive actions required and if every citizen could understand how much stronger our nations could be by these actions, we could become more like the world that was part of both Indigenous teachings and Laudato Si.
About the author:
Jim Paddon lives in London, Ontario, Canada and is a Canadian Vincentian. He is currently chair of the National Social Justice Committee of the Society in Canada. He is married to his dear wife Pat and they have six daughters and eleven grandchildren. Jim has been a member of the Society since the 1970’s.