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News from Visitation Province (Canada)

Visitation Province

Going to the Peripheries

For the past 6 years I have been an active member of the Cape Breton Coalition for Social Justice. In 2014 the Coalition launched a Literacy Project to help reduce poverty through education, the goal being to assist families in obtaining books for children of all ages, especially pre-school age children, and stay at home parents. New and used books are being delivered to Food Banks and various Social Service Agencies. Donations of new books just prior to Christmas have been used by families as gifts for their children. The annual “Under One Umbrella” event in Sydney has been another avenue for making books available to families. Nine hundred (900) books were donated to families during the 2018 event. The goal of this day is to provide “free support services under one roof to those who are homeless or at high risk of being homeless.” Services provided include dental, hearing and vision testing, diabetic screening, massage therapy, foot care, chiropractic services, family physicians, hair dressing, clothing, legal aid as well as food and entertainment.

The Coalition also participates in:

  • Two of the Citizens For Public Justice Post Card Campaigns.
  • Chew On This on October 17th, International Day for the Eradication of Poverty.
  • Give It Up For The Earth Campaign during the season of Lent.

Each Friday morning, I have the opportunity to volunteer at the Loaves and Fishes soup kitchen. It is a humbling experience to serve these friendly, polite, appreciative people. It is also a pleasure to work with the staff and volunteers.

I am also a volunteer in the Breakfast Program at a school in our neighborhood. Meeting the children and listening to their early morning chatter and excitement have been enjoyable experiences. It has also been a delight to meet and chat with the teachers, support staff and volunteers.

Gwendolyn O’Neil, CND

TV Alert!

The Mass for Shut-ins to start off celebrations for St. Marguerite’s special year was taped this week. It will air on CTV, Sunday, March 3rd, at 11:30 am [Atlantic Time]. For those unable to see it on Sunday, try accessing at YouTube, Diocese of Antigonish, Mass for Shut-ins or Google Mass for Shut-ins – Diocese of Antigonish after it has aired.

Connie MacIsaac, CND & Eleanor McCloskey, CND

Pet Therapy

Sister Charlotte Lockhart enjoying Pet Therapy at Windsor Court in Fredericton. The dog knows her now, after a few visits.

Eleanor McCloskey, CND

Book recommendation

I would like to recommend the book Climate Justice By Mary Robinson (former President of Ireland). As the UN Special Envoy on Climate Change, Mary Robinson heard many first-hand accounts of people living through the effects of climate change, from loss of land or island countries, to loss of employment and the need to migrate. In this book, Mary Robinson, presents many compelling stories of global climate change witnesses.

Bernadette Walsh, Associate and former member of JPIC Core Committee

Development And Peace – Caritas Canada… An Invitation To Us All To Go To The Peripheries During Lent

This Lenten season Development and Peace and Pope Francis invite us to reach out and encounter migrants and refugees to share their journey. How can we do this?

1. Donate on line at or give during the Solidarity Sunday collection on the 5th Sunday of Lent on April 7. The funds collected are used to support over 162 projects in 37 countries around the world!

2. Take part or organize a solidarity walk in solidarity with forcibly displaced persons:

3. Read the Development and Peace Share Lent materials as a way to encounter children, women and men who have been forcibly displaced and to learn how their partners are making a difference.

We believe that our life of prayer and our life of service are woven together … contemplation and action. As we begin our Lenten journey let us pray for and assist our sisters and brothers who have to flee their homes. May we learn to walk together with them in solidarity, united in the conviction that we are one global human family.

Dorena Hall, Associate



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