Edition 16: October 2004 Holy Spirit Province
What are we going to do about this? In each minute 11 children die of hunger in the world

This is the text of the original post on the Edmund Rice Justice Bulletin blogsite that has triggered the main headline and reflection for this edition of Edmund Rice Network News. You can find the Edmund Rice Justice Bulletin at: http://erjnbulletin.blogspot.com/


The more than 50 world leaders who met at the United Nations in New York recently were told that hunger continues to kill 24,000 people a day and 11 children every minute.

In an address given by Brazilian President Lula da Silva world leaders were urged to intensify their efforts to reduce global poverty in the face of concerns that the UN is falling behind in its stated target of halving world poverty by 2015 and in the achievement of the Millenium Development Goals.


Twenty million people walking waist-deep in water in the land of Bangladesh need food after the floods.

A miracle of a space rocket to circumnavigate Neptune will cost two billion dollars for several years of journeying.

How can we reconcile these two? yet every day decisions are made a new scent, a rare cosmetic or food for people at the death level!

Every day we redestroy the earth genuine people are crucified anew so that an indulgent wealthy few titivate while others simply starve

We are the indulgent machine-fed ones aiming daily death blows at the earth we could repent but we dare not our priviliges are deeply set in self

Contradictions daily stare us in the face we gear the earth to our convenience inequalities grow daily into abominations Jesus has us die to self daily as a solution...

Pat Mohen cfc

The Millenium Development Goals were a commitment made by the nations of the world that by 2015 they would:

  • eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
  • achieve universal primary education
  • promote gender equality and empower women
  • reduce child mortality
  • improve maternal health
  • combat AIDS, malaria and other diseases
  • ensure environmental sustainability
  • develop a global partnership for development

Each goal is broken down to eighteen specific, achievable targets and forty eight indicators of progress towards achieving the goals.

Whilst some progress has been made particularly in immunization, disease control, reduction in child mortality and the elimination of hunger and poverty in some parts of the world (in other places it has got worse) UN officials say the world body is falling behind in its efforts to achieve the 2015 goals.

For a progress report on the achieving of the millennium development goals visit the Development Gateway website.


Using two different approaches, the World Bank estimates that, if countries improve their policies and institutions, the additional foreign aid required to reach the Millennium Development Goals by 2015 is between $40-$60 billion a year.

This estimate is consistent with other agencies estimates of the costs of achieving individual goals, such as those for education and health. By itself, this additional aid will not be sufficient to attain the goals, as many countries will have to reform their policies and improve service delivery to make the additional spending effective but at the same time countries like Australia have reduced their level of overseas aid in terms of percentage of GDP.

By contrast the cost to the US of prosecuting the war in Iraq will nave reached $152 billion by the end of 2004, agricultural subsidies to farmers in rich countries total $300 billion annually and a conservative estimate of military spending in developed countries is $500 billion each year.


The word Justice is used infrequently in the Bible. It is rather translated as Uprightness, Just treatment, Righteousness, Right living, and in other ways but they all point towards all peoples.

A painting by Pat Mohen in the Westcourt Collection.

When he spoke to the woman at the well Jesus was setting her onto the path of true justice so that she could be accepted as an equal and likewise she could accept others as equals.

He went around doing good, bringing all peoples towards the path of righteousness.

This Justice movement leads to true Peace, but the acquiring of it seems to be an impossibility in today's world. Here are two extremes. Millions of black Africans trudging towards death — and — two billion dollars to construct a space craft that will circumnavigate the planet Neptune in seven years from now. I am not blaming the rocket builders individually for the state of things in Africa, I just use these two examples to point out the extreme inequalities existing on this earth.

It is only when the peoples of the earth can get a grip on this equality concept that the message of Jesus can be universally understood and it must start with our personal strivings. We must find this Justice path and encourage others to find it also.

Pat Mohen cfc



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