This is a different account of the current recession in Ireland and world-wide. Gerry O'Hanlon SJ draws on the rich resources of the Christian tradition to argue for the need for a new, more socially responsible, economic paradigm. He proposes a vision of the common good, inspired by the values of justice and solidarity, which rules out any simple return to 'business as usual'. Instead he urges that we use this time of crisis as an opportunity to pool our resources (both secular and religious) in committing ourselves to the search for a more sustainable future. This extended essay shows the relevance of theological thought for practical living, of Christianity for the public square.
‘The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there’, L.P. Hartley famously wrote. Right now in Ireland, however, it is the present that feels like a foreign country. This is a place where we must adjust our assumptions and expectations and learn, or relearn, the skills to enable us deal with an economic situation that is the reverse of the favourable one to which we had become so acclimatised.
The need to think seriously about the values that will guide us through these difficult times was the core theme of a Statement, ‘Justice in Recession?’, which was issued by the Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice on 12 October 2008, and is reproduced as the opening article in this issue of Working Notes.
Edited by The International Jesuit Network for Development
The Jubilee 2000 campaign drew attention to the crippling debt borne by the world's poorest countries. Yet, today, developing countries owe more than three times the amount they owed 25 years ago. This collection of papers, from a conference organised by the Jesuit Network for Development, takes a timely look at the many dimensions of debt and trade and their interconnections. Authors from Zambia, the Philippines, Columbia and Brazil give firsthand accounts of the impact of debt and unfair trade on their countries. For anyone with an interest in the creation of just and sustainable policies in these areas, Debt and Trade is essential reading.