Justice and Solidarity with the Abandoned
The primary foundation of a Christian spirituality of justice is faith in God who reveals himself as Father and calls everyone to become sisters and brothers. In Jesus, God reveals power as communication (cf. Phil 2:5-11) and through the Holy Spirit, teaches the attitudes and practices of sharing in all kinds of relationships. The process of learning the spirituality of justice begins with the commitment to others and their circumstances, done with a constructive and merciful attitude. This is fully expressed by means of dialogue, spiritual and scientific, which opens the way to discernment and the practice of justice.
The teaching of Jesus on the ‘Justice of the Kingdom’ is a call to be engaged in an on-going process of learning in the journey of life, an attitude which helps us overcome the temptation to see power as domination. (cf. Mk 10:35-45) Mercy becomes a parameter in making judgements in our relationships. (cf. Mk 4:24)
“Redemptorists can never be deaf to the cry of the poor and the oppressed, but have the duty to search for ways of helping them, so that they themselves will be able to overcome the evils that oppress them. This essential element of the Gospel must never be lacking in the proclamation of the word of God.” (Stat 09)
Redemptorists have “the duty of preaching the Gospel explicitly and of showing solidarity with the poor by promoting their fundamental rights to justice and freedom.” (Cons 5) Across the world, Redemptorists can be found in solidarity with those crying out for justice, such as -refugees and migrants, indigenous peoples, domestic workers, fisher folk, street children, slum dwellers, prisoners and the destitute. Redemptorists can also be found working for justice at the important levels of advocacy, policy development, social action, political analysis and legal support.
“Members should try to establish works which have for their aim human and social progress, and this above all in regions which are still in a state of development.” (Stat 021) In Sri Lanka, Redemptorists are seeking to make a difference in the lives of people and families affected by leprosy, through the work of the Society for the Upliftment and Rehabilitation of Leprosy Affected Persons (Surol).