As we begin Lenten Season, Archbishop Christian Lépine publishes a letter in support of the Development and Peace Share Lent campaign.

"One human family, food for all"
Pope Francis

Dear parishes and missions,
Dear faithful in Christ,
The fight against hunger is a vital endeavour for all of humanity. Hunger and malnutrition have disastrous effects upon the development of children and young people. In adults, chronic weakness significantly reduces the energy needed to be able to work and live. Fighting world hunger means contributing to the health of families and to the proper functioning of development organizations operated by the people receiving international aid. Development and Peace is present at the grassroots, working with locally based organizations. In this way Development and Peace is able to act with generosity and humility in supporting initiatives emerging from underprivileged sectors and to promote genuine solidarity with local partners.  

For Christians, the fight against hunger is indispensable. Jesus gave the example of love for the poor and both in the gospels and in the stories of the Church's saints, Jesus is presented as inviting us to become closer to the poor. Indeed, one cannot be a disciple of Christ without living in solidarity with the poor. Solidarity is not an occasional activity, it is a way of life. Solidarity is not a practice that comes only when we can afford to, it is a virtue to be lived out by all of us, even when we are worried about the future. Think about the example of the poor widow, who in contributing a coin, gave from what she needed to live, not from her surplus.  

In this 2015 Share Lent Campaign, I invite every parish to renew its commitment to supporting the efforts of Development and Peace towards the elimination of hunger. By participating in this campaign, culminating in the fifth Sunday of Lent, you will help communicate that the Church is still concerned about the well-being of poor people and you will become a community actively engaged in promoting the fundamental human right to food.  

May this season of Lent become for each Christian community and every baptized person, a time of conversion and a deepening encounter with Christ through prayer, the Eucharist and the poor.

May God bless you and keep you in his Peace,

+ Christian Lépine
Archbishop of Montreal

Download the PDF version here


Testimonial of Father Savarimuthu Yesappan  

My name is Father Savarimuthu Yesappan, parish administrator at St. Kevin's. As a member of the Heralds of Good News missionary society of apostolic life from India and having also served in Tanzania in Africa, I have seen firsthand the abject poverty in which many people in the global South live.  

The typhoon Yolanda disaster in the Philippines in 2013 which mobilized the Filipino and other communities at St. Kevin's to raise funds and to collect clothing for the victims gave me an opportunity to learn about the good work carried out by Development and Peace in that country and in many others. Catholic social teaching calls on us to be in a constant state of generosity as part of our preferential option for the poor. 

Please be generous in your donations to Development and Peace's Share Lent campaign.

Témoignage de l'Abbé Jean-Chrysostome Zoloshi

Mon nom est Jean-Chrysostome Zoloshi, prêtre du diocèse de Montréal, ordonné prêtre en juin 2001. Je suis né en République Démocratique du Congo, un des pays le plus pauvre d'Afrique (au 186ème rang sur 187, Sophie Langlois, Lumières d'Afrique, 2014). Venant d'un tel pays, je devrais être plus généreux pour les organismes qui aident les pays pauvres. Je dois pourtant avouer que durant mes premières années à Montréal, je ne donnais pas aux œuvres de bienfaisance. En 2002, quelque chose s'est passé qui a changé mes habitudes : en cette année-là, j'étais allé au Congo, et jusque dans le village de mon père ; j'y ai été saisi par la pauvreté. J'ai compris que je devais, moi aussi, contribuer à l'éradiquer. De retour à Montréal, j'ai moi-même initié des projets pour aider les démunis. Je suis allé plusieurs fois au Congo  avec quelques ami-e-s québécois-e-s qui ont attesté les faits. 

J'appuis Développement et Paix parce que depuis plusieurs années, cet organisme créé par les Évêques du canada aide les gens et les communautés en République Démocratique du Congo et ailleurs dans le monde, à améliorer leurs conditions de vie. Je nous invite toutes et tous, particulièrement les Catholiques originaires des pays du Sud, à donner généreusement lors de la collecte organisée dans nos paroisses le 5ème dimanche de Carême. Croyez-moi, nos dons font la différence dans la vie des pauvres des pays du Sud !     

Témoignage de l'Abbé Jean Ravary

Chaque année, au Carême, on nous fait signe pour ce partage. Le trépied de Jésus pour un Carême valable...PRIÈRE, JEÛNE, PARTAGE! C'est vrai qu'on nous demande souvent, on risque de ne plus entendre l'appel. Mais ce type de partage est fondamental, on aide des gens à se prendre en main en collaborant à divers projets! Pensons simplement à ce proverbe médiéval : "Ce que j'ai dépensé, je l'ai eu. Ce que j'ai donné, je l'ai!"

Que ce partage du moment présent nous saisisse!