Migration / Economic Justice / Girl-child / Trafficking / Prostitution / Integral Ecology
Our Position Papers (PPs) have their source in the spirituality, vision, mission, and heritage of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd (OLCGS). The congregation and all affiliated with its mission have a history of service commitment that draws on 400 years of compassionate outreach to, primarily, girls, women, and children in the face of social conditions that cry out for mercy and reconciliation.
The 25th Congregational Chapter of 1985 “urged new responses in relation to Social Justice…” and declared “justice is an integral part of our mission of reconciliation…” Additionally, the Good Shepherd International Foundation (GSIF) was established in 2008 to support effective program development in our global era through capacity building, supportive funding and technical assistance. These responses led us to examine practices and policies and alter structures throughout the congregation. In 2011, the congregation disseminated a set of Good Shepherd Position Papers to serve as a tool toward relevant development of programs, policy, and advocacy. This 2018 update encompasses the Congregational Chapter Direction statement of 2015. It integrates insights of Catholic Social Teaching, including teaching of our current Pope Francis; it draws on the international work of our congregational nongovernmental organization (NGO) representative at the United Nations (UN), including the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) framework of the UN Agenda 2030.
This updated articulation of our PPs renews a common direction for action in our global ministries; we seek to deepen the understanding of God’s mercy expressed in current situations. Our vision of God’s love is expressed in direct service projects characterized by compassionate welcome and relevant program development; it includes vibrant policy and advocacy activities that call for justice in systems and structures of programs, governments, church, and social entities.
The position papers are a reference and resource. They offer a standard from which regional or national adaptations must be discerned for appropriate local strategic planning according to the highest international standards. They also provide an expression of values and orientation for all who support our work.
The PPs have included input from our practitioners across the world and have the affirmation of the Congregational Leadership Team.
We offer these papers as helpful guides that can:
- Provide a base for local mission and ministry practice, advocacy, and policy.
- Guide initial and continuing formation for all involved in mission and ministry.
- Inform province priorities and good practices.
- Focus strategic planning for ministry projects.
- Motivate social, political, and economic analysis.
- Serve as a basis for regular evaluation.
We should devote ourselves to Divine Mercy St John Eudes, (adapted)