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Our Response

The Edmund Rice movement is inspired by the example of Edmund Rice, Ambrose Treacy and the others throughout the two hundred year history of the Christian Brothers.
Those moved hear the call of God and the directions of our Congregation and Province Leaders to:

"To live in solidarity with the whole earth community
to walk with those whom society has marginalised,
particularly young people and
to proclaim liberation and justice for all creation."

The Christian Brothers and many more followers of Edmund have responded in a wide range of ministries in the areas listed below.

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CHRISTIAN BROTHERS IN MISSION

A significant shift in ministry occurred for the Christian Brothers in Oceania in 2013. Brothers were invited to enter into ministry outside of the classroom where they had been historically conscripted and to respond to the needs around them.

"… with open minds and hearts,
we participate fully in the creation of a new era."

Nairobi Congregation Chapter 2014

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While a few brothers are still directly involved in formal education ministries, most are now involved in ministries more suited to their age and developing interests.

In discerning the “signs of the times” many brothers have devoted themselves to “the poor and marginalised on their doorstep”.

Some examples of type and specific ministries follow:

Leadership and Administration

Environmental Work

Overseas ministries

Other internal Congregational work

Formation

Parish/Church support

Aged Care

Health care

People with Disabilities

Chaplaincy

Indigenous Ministries

Prison and Judicial Ministries

Contemplative Life

Media, Publishing

Social Services

Education (Primary/secondary/Tertiary)

Refugees and Asylum Seekers

Spiritual Direction

ENGAGING IN ADVOCACY

 Our Nairobi Chapter offers the challenge

“To engage in advocacy with the voiceless,
the marginalised and
all that are oppressed.”

There is an exciting initiative beginning here in Brisbane. It is called the Queensland Community Alliance and it attempts to bring Faith communities, Trade Unions and private enterprise together to work for the common good of those marginalised in our society.

The Brothers around Brisbane are encouraged to join this alliance and become active in the area of advocacy. This venture already running in London, Boston and Sydney to name a few places.

The Brothers Formation Team is responsible for the delivery of services and support to Brothers as members of religious communities and involved in delivering the Mission in these diverse ways.

The team is responsible for developing and delivering a Spiral of Offerings (formation) for the Brothers.

by Brothers Formation Co-ordniator of Brothers Formation Team is Tim Moloney

COMMUNITY SERVICES

Edmund Rice Community Services

Across the Oceanic region, Edmund Rice Community Service Centres and Programs respond to the needs of their local communities, supporting and empowering vulnerable and disadvantaged people and families. True to our commitment to work in partnership with others, many Centres and Programs work in partnership with other agencies and organisations and with the support of external funding bodies, including government departments.

As Edmund Rice Ministries, these Centres and Programs exist to build life‐giving communities which affirm and celebrate difference, and promote Presence, Compassion and Liberation.

Some of our Community Services providers are listed below. Click on the service to read details.

Edmund Rice Centre, Mirrabooka

Edmund Rice Centre Mirrabooka provides a gathering place for people from diverse cultural backgrounds to be accepted for who they are and to value their gifts.

Building on the primacy of relationships the Centre creates opportunities for people from indigenous, refugee, asylum seeker, youth and family backgrounds to be engaged in advocacy and education processes that empower them.

Bella Ndayikeze, E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. M: 0412412480

They offer a range of educational programs and community development activities, including:

  • English as a Second Language, Computer skills, Cooking, Sewing and Art/Craft classes
  • After school and weekend Youth activities.
  • Women's groups
  • Social events for families
  • Lifeskills for living in Australia - education in household management and family care for recently arrived Humanitarian entrants
  • Driver Education for adult Humanitarian Entrants
  • Generalist casework, referral and advocacy services to Humanitarian entrants and migrants in the North Metropolitan area
Established in March 1998 to support Humanitarian Entrants and Indigenous families the Edmund Rice Centre Mirrabooka is a non-government incorporated not-for-profit organisation and a ministry of the Trustees of the Christian Brothers Oceania.

Visit website:   http://www.ercwa.org.au/

Edmund Rice Community and Refugee Services St Albans

In the spirit of Edmund Rice, ERCRS seeks to improve the lives of and opportunities for, children and young people of a disadvantaged background by supporting them in their education and providing them with access to free learning support along with a range of social activities throughout the year.

We're a not-for-profit organisation based in St Albans, Melbourne, and we provide free learning support and a range of social services to students of a disadvantaged background.

Visit website:   http://www.ercwa.org.au/

The Mt Atkinson Community Project

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The Mt Atkinson Community Partnership incorporates an agreement between Mt Atkinson Holdings Pty Ltd (MAH) and Edmund Rice Services Oceania (ERSO), operating within the auspices of the Trustees of the Christian Brothers, Oceania Province. The Partnership is designed to support three communities: residents of the broader western suburbs of Melbourne, those who visit the area for work and those who will reside in Mt Atkinson by providing opportunities for education and recreation.

ERSO is privileged to participate in this innovative and inspiring community development project. The Partnership will provide support and outdoor experiences for families, youth and the vulnerable in Melbourne’s west, and assist in building healthy communities. It is inclusive of multiple Faith Traditions and promotes multiculturalism, diversity, assimilation, cultural tolerance, leadership and acceptance. It's services are for all members of the community.

Edmund Rice Community and Refugee Services (ERCRS) has it new office  at the Mt Atkinson Estate. This idyllic rural property is currently undergoing a number of developments to transform the land into a central hub for clients, families and community groups.

ERCRS team joins Project Manager Mark Monahan and Tarneit Homework Club Coordinator Laura Di Pasquale are working in collaboration  with a number of client programs to utilise the vast space.

Download:  An Overview ~ Mount Atkinson Community Partnership

Edmund Rice Presence in Developing Nations

The Edmund Rice Oceania Province has extended its outreach beyond the boarders of Australia and New Zealand to some of the less technically developed nations to our North.

Community Engagement is the key to beneficial presence and mutual transformation in these cross-cultural situations.

Click on the Developing Nations bar below.

YOUNG PEOPLE AND FAMILY SUPPORT

slice of the icon 2Edmund Rice chose the poor boys of Ireland as the focus of his work.

Edmund Rice Worked With and For the Youth of Ireland

Edmund chose the poor boys of Ireland as the focus of his work.

He saw education as the best way to help them.

In our times and region education is readily available but there are some who are not able to avail of the opportunities most take for granted.

The Edmund Rice Network in Oceania realize that there is a need to reach out to these in a way which may involve education but which recognizes the individual needs of each.

The Oceania Province still works With and For Youth in Oceania

This was evidenced in a strong presence at The Australian Catholic Youth Festival recently held in Adelaide. Over 3000 young people and eighteen Bishops from across the country converging on South Australia for three days of music, guest speakers, silence & prayer, practical workshops and plenary sessions.

Centred on the theme from the beatitudes, “blessed are the pure of heart for they shall see God” (Mt 5.8), young people aged between 14 to 25 had the rare opportunity to explore questions about their faith, in particular what it means to be ‘pure of heart’.

The Christian Brothers (represented through Edmund Rice Camps & Build the Bridge Volunteers) had a strong presence at this year’s festival; bringing a uniquely “Edmund Rice” voice to the diverse program. Highlights from our involvement included:

  • Andree Brown (Edmund Rice Camps SA Executive Officer) facilitating a key workshop around the themes of “Faith in Action” and young adult formation, highlighting that in our learned experience, young people are truly able to explore and develop their faith when it is expressed through action.
  • Andree also hosted an Edmund Rice Camps ‘National’ stall, receiving strong support from camps volunteers Eliesa Morello, Mary Zeoli, Senuri Wagaarachchi, Adrian Szabo and Jean-Pierre Terreux. Many young visitors to the stall commented on their personal connections with Eddie Rice Camps in their home states, with one young man even spontaneously starting a big “Eddie Eddie Eddie!” chant to a typically rapturous response.
  • In his role on the Festival’s InCounter subcommittee (responsible for 60 stallholders and the huge expo hall space), Adam Whitefield (Christian Brothers Regional Mission Team SA/WA) coordinated the “Justice Activity Centre” which involved key organisations facilitating a series of engaging and hands-on justice & advocacy activities. This included young people preparing hundreds of care packs for the homeless, the writing 150 letters to politicians advocating for the release of children from detention, the creation of 250 lolly bags with personal messages for children in detention, and the collection of 500 signatures advocating for climate justice.
  • A key highlight was seeing our very own Caitlin Brown (ERCSA & Build the Bridge Volunteers) shine as one of the Festival’s three MCs. To witness her speak so passionately and confidently in front of 3000 people was truly a sight to behold!
  • Another of our ERCSA/Build the Bridge Volunteers Maddie Kelly stole the show during the opening plenary with her beautiful and powerful spoken word piece on the importance of her faith, including the value in ‘mountaintop’ experiences and the need to follow the ‘restlessness’ in our hearts.
  • Maddie also joined fellow Build the Bridge Volunteers Adrian Szabo, Cate Snell & Ada Snell to lead a panel session around the issues facing young asylum seekers and refugees in our community. The session was delivered through the lens of their involvement with vulnerable groups through their BTBV and formation opportunities. It was attended by over 400 people and incredibly well received.

Prior to the festival, Pope Francis himself sent a letter to delegates praying they would be “spirit-filled evangelisers who pray and work for the spread of the Gospel, the conversion of culture and the care of the poor and marginalised in society."

It is our hope too, that whether it be expressed through our Edmund Rice Charism or elsewhere, our young people can accept the invitation to be (as Pope Francis’ calls it) “builders and craftsmen of the future which God is dreaming of for us and for our world”, and that they may indeed do so with “courage and joy in their hearts.”

Adam Whitefield – Christian Brothers Regional Mission Team (SA/WA)

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detension of children

Child Detension

Me and Him

Programs conducted by the Edmund Rice Oceania Province

The Australian schools which were run by the province are now the responsibility of Edmund Rice Education Australia.

Our commitment to working with youth is still maintained in many other areas.

Edmund Rice Camps

Edmund Rice Camps

Edmund Rice Camps are community based not for profit organisations providing positive recreational experiences for children, youth and families who may not otherwise have the opportunity.

Supported by a 1:1 ratio of volunteers to participants, Edmund Rice Camps provide an environment of fun, acceptance, care and growth.

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Painted Faces

 

 


Edmund Rice Camps provide opportunities for volunteers and participants to meet in a mutually empowering environment of fun, trust and growth.

With twelve Edmund Rice Camps groups operating across the Oceania Province, we seek to empower participants to grow in confidence, resilience and hope through authentic relationship. This dynamic and successful movement sees young adults volunteer as ‘big buddies’ matched with a participant to be their mentor, positive role model, and best mate.

We aim to support the participants in developing an increased sense of self-worth, inner and outer confidence, and a much-needed break from often difficult circumstances.

Vital to this successful movement is the provision of training, reflection and justice advocacy opportunities which empower the young adult volunteers with the skills, knowledge and confidence to engage in Edmund Rice Camps activities as mentors, role-models and leaders.

For more information about Edmund Rice Camps, or to see what your local camps group is doing at the moment please click on the link below.

Read a tribute to the work done by the Edmund Rice Camp Movement published in the Australian Catholic University magazine "Insight"

                   Read the Article                   

 

Visit the Edmund Rice Camps Website

Serving Young People Beyond Australia

New Zealand

The Province is also responsible for several large schools in New Zealand

Edmund Rice Schools in New Zealand
Liston College, Auckland St Peter's College, Auckland
St Thomas of Canterbury College St Kevin's College,Oamaru
Kavanagh College,Otago  

 

Developing Nations

Youth and Family Services, largely in education of those unable to attend a normal schools, are a high priority.

Read about Our work in Developing Nations

 

 

SPIRITUALITY CENTRES

Spirituality Centres

     

Edmund Rice Centre - (Amberley, Victoria)

View Website below or

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The Archer Mountain Community

View Website below or

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Edmund Rice Retreat and Conference Centre, Mulgoa

View Website below or

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JUSTICE AND ADVOCACY

Justice and Advocacy

Philip Pinto, previous Congregational Leader, encouraged all ministries of the Christian Brothers to be engaged with their people, and in doing so, become conscious of the issues confronting those on the margins and to enable their voices to heard.

Addressing the structural inequalities in society that place vulnerable people in situations of disengagement, disimpowerment,  and disadvantage is Advocacy.

In recent years, the Province has been encouraging people to put this area of advocacy in the context of the need to promote and defend Earth and Human Rights. ᅠThis gives us a universal language with which to engage any civil society in the raising awareness of and defining these rights.

God is calling us to be compassionate people transforming old structures, cultural mindsets and practices, ushering in a new way of being brother
(and sister)
for the world.

 

Nairobi Congregation Chapter 2014

Justice and advocacy protesters

Adam and Hayatulla BBQ

ENGAGING IN ADVOCACY

Our Nairobi Chapter offers the challenge
“To engage in advocacy with the voiceless, the marginalised and all that are oppressed.” (p28)


Province Advocacy Group

You can join the Province Advocacy Group in conversation and action by visiting their Blog at

    JUSTERN Blog


Justice Desk - ERNSA Justice Campaign

You can follow the Justice Desk - ERNSA Justice Campaign for the year! "Promoting The Global Goals for Sustainable Development"

    ERN South Australia


Australian Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans

You can join ACRATH a group of religious men and women who advocate for the rights of many who are forced of tricked to come to Australia with the promise of work only to find themselves in a state of slavery.

    Download the ACRATH Newsletter.


Edmund Rice ministries dedicated to work in the area of Justice and advocacy include:

Edmund Rice Centre for Justice and Community Education, Homebush

Edmund Rice Centre for
Justice and Community Education

erc asylum seekers resourceThe Edmund Rice Centre for Justice and Community Education, and its dedicated team of staff and volunteers, commits itself to a range of projects and activities across the areas in research, community education, advocacy, networking and a range of social justice issues both nationally and internationally.

With a priority for ‘first and last peoples’ the Centre focuses on the circumstances of indigenous people, refugees and asylum seekers – especially young people.

They have a collection of publications, including a quarterly newsletter, Just Thinking; a regular issues paper, Just Comment; and a number of specific research and submission papers.

The Centre is also involved in a range of community education activities including immersion programs to Indigenous communities in Australia and with partner organisations oversees. Immersions focus on issues of cross-cultural communication, peace and conflict.

Community education is also a key goal of our Schools Network, aims to involve schools from around Australia in a discussion of social justice issues and an exchange of information on projects schools are undertaking to advance these issues.

The Centre networks with a variety of organisations involved in social justice and advocacy. We have partner organisations in the areas of Business Ethics (The Edmund Rice Business Ethics Initiative), Indigenous Rights (Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation, The Lingiari Foundation and The ReconciliACTION Network) and broader social justice advocacy networks.

Our philosophy of working together to achieve positive social change extends beyond these partner organisations to include a range of organisations from all sectors of the Non-profit.

For more information about the work of the Centre or to get involved, please visit their Website

A Resource for Educators

For many years the Edmund Rice Centre has been working to raise awareness of, and advocate for the rights of asylum seekers and refugees.

The Asylum Seekers and Refugees Education Resource is ERC’s latest publication, which converts years of our research and experience into curriculum support material that addresses the learning needs of students.

The free 54 page Education Resource offers 35 cross-curricular activities which are practical, engaging and focused on increasing awareness about human rights and advocacy. The activities are adaptable to all year levels in secondary school and some can also be used with primary classes, students with special needs and could also be used in community group discussions.

Students are encouraged to think about asylum seekers and refugees with compassion, to move their understanding from the head to the heart.

To download this Education Resource and the Flyer, go to Resources for Schools


Edmund Rice Justice Aotearoa New Zealand Trust

Edmund Rice Justice, Aotearoa, New Zealand

Edmund Rice Justice NZ

A significant focus for the Trust is Restorative Justice and New Zealand prison reform

The Trust together with Te Runanga o Nga Maata Waka commissioned Living on the Fringes which was a report exploring the issues faced by those living on the borders of Christchurch’s post-earthquake red zones.

In 2013, Edmund Rice Justice Aotearoa-New Zealand and Edmund Rice International published a joint submission to the United Nations Universal Periodic Review of New Zealand. This report focused on major issues affecting the rights of the child and indigenous peoples, especially the impact of poverty on children and the incarceration rates for Māori young people in Aotearoa-New Zealand.

Download Full Article         Visit Website           Follow on Face Book

Edmund Rice International, Geneva

Edmund Rice International

erilogomaroonEdmund Rice International (ERI) brings the real life human rights stories of ordinary people to the table of the international community in Geneva and New York.

This is done through submissions and lobbying with and on behalf of those crying out for equity and justice.

ERI, as a faith-based non-governmental organisation (NGO), engages in advocacy at the United Nations through its special status and recognition by the Economic and Social Council.  The ERI team brings a deep commitment to working for children and young people, who are marginalised through poverty, lack of access to education, being victims of exploitation or living in unhealthy environments.

 

ERI works at the international level in close collaboration with their ERI advocacy coordinators and support networks in 30 countries around the world to promote and protect the rights of children and young people to quality education, fundamental rights and freedoms and a healthy and nurturing community in which to grow.

Inspired by the vision and life of Blessed Edmund Rice, ERI believes that education in all its forms offers opportunities for the promotion of a rights-based and faith-based approach to social justice and ecological advocacy.

ERI works in partnership with other faith-based groups in the promotion of rights, peace and justice. They engage with the change-makers at the international level in order to bring issues and situations to the attention of the international community at the United Nations in New York and Geneva to seek answers to the issues affecting the lives of some of the most vulnerable people on the planet.

ERI is committed to realizing each day, through promoting human rights via advocacy, the dream of God for a more inclusive and compassionate earth community. God’s dream is ERI’s dream.

A wide range of  Justice and Advocacy RESOURCES available on the Edmund Rice International website.

To find out more please visit

A Year of Living Sustainably

Twelve Projects undertaken by the Edmund Rice Followers from all parts of the world which will that reduced our "Ecological Footprint".

Read of the Twelve Projects