A month ago, along with Alexandre Warnet, a climate activist in Laval, I launched a citizens' petition to Québec’s National Assembly to close stores on Sundays. More than 1,150 people have already signed it. In two months, as of August 29, the petition will be removed from the Website. I invite you to sign it, and have it signed by others.
Why take part in this campaign?
Because a common day of rest is good for the human being, for the family and for society: The Sabbath was made for man (humanity), says Jesus in Mk 2:27. It is likely that the practice of a day of rest has good effects in your personal, family and social experience. Can you name these fruits? Alexandre Warnet and many others have tasted them, talked about stopping the mad rush, about health, about relationships with others and with nature, without referring to religious conviction. This discovery led me to join him in this campaign.
Because it is good for the planet: André Beauchamp, who was director of the Public Hearings Office on the Environment and who is also a priest in our diocese, identified ‘four bombs’ that threaten our planet: he calls them D, P, C and I: demographics, pollution, consumerism and injustices. To defuse the C-bomb, is it not appropriate to observe a Buy nothing day a week?
Because liberation from slavery is still relevant, for oneself and for others. The Sabbath first celebrates God, as liberator of God`s people from slavery in Egypt (Deut 5:12-15). The boundary between work and personal life have been blurred with teleworking. Is it not relevant today to affirm, like our ancestors in faith, that we are not slaves? In order to defuse the I-bomb - inequality - we refuse to enslave anyone. There will of course be people who work on Sundays, it is necessary for the common good; but let it be in freedom.
Because it is good for society that Christians have the possibility to reenergize by participating in the Eucharist and finding meaning of their work or activity. “And so the day of rest, centred on the Eucharist, sheds its light on the whole week, and motivates us to greater concern for nature and the poor.” -Pope Francis, LS, 237).
Isn't it discriminatory to choose Sunday for everyone? Do we not need these jobs?
It is good that the debate is taking place. The petition is there to give everyone a chance to express themselves. Will we dare to leave our comfort zone to listen, to reach out and to propose? Will there be a next step? Are there any volunteers to continue? With what strategy? These questions remain open! Yes, let us rediscover Sundays! Happy campaigning!
To sign the petition, click here!
For more resources, click here.