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September 2012



- Re:Generate: KAIROS Intergenerational Gathering 2012
- Fasting for Climate Justice
- Sisters in Spirit 2012 Vigils: A Call for People of Faith to Honour Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women
- OFP, KAIROS’ Partner in Colombia, Receives More Death Threats
- KAIROS Joins the Cry for an End to Violence in Syria
- KAIROS Co-Hosts ‘First Voices! First Women Speak!’: A Gathering to Honour Indigenous Women’s Knowledge and Perspectives on Violence, Restoration and Resurgence
- Report on Living Courage Eastern Tour and TRC, June 5-25, 2012
- Economy of Life, Justice, and Peace for All: A Call to Action


Seeking Shelter: An Ecumenical Resource for an Advent Justice Journey


Claudia Castellanos


Spirited Reflection: Somewhat Unexpectedly


Intergenerational Gathering for Eastern Canada
October 19-21
NAV Centre, Cornwall, ON

Re:Generate your passion and commitment to social and ecological justice! Connect with others who are also dedicated to making the world a more just place for all God’s creation. Join the KAIROS network and a wide range of supporters as we look at ways to build an intergenerational, ecumenical movement for justice.

Re:Generate will foster dialogue across generations and denominations with a strong focus on movement building. We are ecstatic to have an amazing, diverse line-up of plenary speakers and workshop leaders, including:

Isaiah Kipyegon Toroitich, Action by Churches Together (ACT) Alliance Kenya

Cindy Blackstock, First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of Canada Canada

Our program also includes plenty of time for reflection, worship, music and fun. In our weekend together, we'll build the friendships across generations, provinces and diverse experiences that will sustain our movement in the years to come.

For more information contact Andrew Kohan:
Young Adult and Networks Coordinator
416-463-5312 x 222



Fasting for Climate Justice

Is this not the fast that I choose:
to loose the bonds of injustice,
to undo the thongs of the yoke,
let the oppressed go free,
and to break every yoke?

These words from Isaiah 58, one of our most powerful justice texts, urge us to examine what it means to be true to our Christian faith. The answer, we are told, is not to serve our own interests, but those of the larger community of which we are a part. A group of faith-based activists are taking that message to heart in a “Fast and Vigil for Climate Justice” on Parliament Hill from September 21 to October 2.

For more information please click here.


Sisters in Spirit 2012 Vigils: A Call for People of Faith to Honour Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women

On October 4, 2012, the Native Women's Association of Canada and Families of Sisters in Spirit will hold vigils to honour missing and murdered Indigenous sisters, daughters, mothers, grandmothers and friends across Canada. Over the past five years, tens of thousands of people have attended these vigils in at least 84 communities.

Please click here for more information.

OFP, KAIROS’ Partner in Colombia, Receives More Death Threats


KAIROS is gravely concerned by the news that members of the Popular Feminist Organization (OFP), our partner organization in Colombia, have received more death threats. On September 13, Gloria Amparo Suarez, from the leadership team of the OFP, received a threatening phone call and WAS given 48 hours to leave the city. The threat was extended to Yolanda Becerra, the national coordinator. These threats took place as the OFP prepares for the regional and national Women’s Courts. Gloria and Yolanda were told to stop meeting with – and organizing – the women.

For more information, and for OFP's urgent action, please click here.

KAIROS Co-Hosts ‘First Voices! First Women Speak!’: A Gathering to Honour Indigenous Women’s Knowledge and Perspectives on Violence, Restoration and Resurgence

Lee Maracle


On August 24 KAIROS and the Indigenous People’s Solidarity Movement Ottawa (IPSMO), gathered over 100 people at the Odawa Native Friendship Centre in Ottawa for a community teach-in featuring renowned Indigenous scholars, writers and artists Lee Maracle, Leanne Betasamosake Simpson, Moe Clarke and Vera Wabegijig.

For more details on the teach-in click here.

Report on Living Courage Eastern Tour and TRC, June 5-25, 2012

Claudia & Lucy

KAIROS partners Claudia Castellanos from the Popular Feminist Organization (OFP) in Colombia, and Lucy Talgieh from Wi’am: Palestinian Conflict Resolution Center in Bethlehem, Occupied Palestinian Territories, visited communities in Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Ontario and Saskatchewan during the Living Courage tour, June 5-25, 2012.  In Nova Scotia they spoke at public events in Halifax, Antigonish and Bridgewater. In Newfoundland they stopped in Corner Brook, South Brook, and St. John’s. In Saskatchewan, following a public forum, they attended the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) National Event in Saskatoon. 

Read a brief report on this exciting tour here.


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Seeking Shelter

“Las Posadas” is a Central American and Mexican Advent tradition in which Mary and Joseph walk through town searching for shelter. They are accompanied on their journey by local church members singing and carrying bright lanterns. Turned away again and again, they finally find householders who welcome them in. Today, that search for shelter is a reality for many in our world, whether the shelter people seek is fair wages, land rights, or clean water. What is our response?

Our Advent journey through Peace, Hope, Joy and Love can also carry us along on a search for justice and right relations. KAIROS invites you to an Advent search for that shelter in the spirit of Mary and Joseph’s journey.

Our Advent 2012 resource includes prayers, scripture commentary and litanies for all four Sundays in Advent, with a specific justice theme for each Sunday. It also includes instructions for lantern-making, slideshows, and action ideas for taking this justice journey beyond your church. We hope you and your faith community will also join in online sharing of your creative Advent ideas!

Estimated cost: $10 plus postage for a print copy or $5 for a downloadable file, all copyright for group use included. To reserve a copy, email orders@kairoscanada.org or call 1 877 403 8933 x243




Claudia Castellanos

CLAUDIA LILIANA CASTELLANOS RONCANCIO is a lawyer with KAIROS’ long-time partner, the Popular Feminist Organization (OFP) in Magdalena Medio, Colombia. Her experience includes working with youth, women, displaced communities and Indigenous peoples to build their capacity to promote and defend their human rights. She has also worked as a Legal Assistant to Indigenous and displaced peoples and as the Coordinator of Development and Peace for the Diocese of Mangague in Magdalena Medio.

Claudia earned her law degree at the University of Bucaramanga and has since participated in numerous seminars and workshops related to national and international law. She has accompanied female victims of human rights abuses and has worked on advocacy related to these cases. She is involved in training related to gender based violence, rights of women and rights of women to truth, justice and reparation. She is currently involved in the development of Women’s Courts for Truth, Justice and Reparations in Colombia. These Courts, the first of which is planned for 2013, aim to create a forum to speak out about the human rights abuses experienced by women in Colombia.

Economy of Life, Justice, and Peace for All: A Call to Action


In June 2012, the Global Forum on Poverty, Wealth and Ecology of the World Council of Churches (WCC) concluded with a strong call for action to build an “economy of life” that focuses on eradicating poverty, challenging wealth accumulation and safeguarding ecological integrity. The forum took place in Bogor, Indonesia, with more than one hundred participants from around the world, including KAIROS Economic Justice Coordinator John Dillon.

For more information, and to read the full WCC statement, click here.


KAIROS Joins the Cry for an End to Violence in Syria


KAIROS joins the global cry for an end to the violence in Syria, for dialogue between the warring parties, and for a just peace for the Syrian people.

KAIROS echoes the call of the World Council of Churches for an immediate end to the violence in Syria and for “all parties to engage in dialogue – as the only solution – in order to safeguard the unity and pluralistic nature of historic Syria.” We mourn the tragic loss of so many lives, and the trauma and suffering inflicted on Syrian citizens and on the thousands of refugees from across the region hosted in Syria.

For more information, including links to other organizations sending aid, please click here.


Spirited Reflection: Somewhat Unexpectedly

By Jennifer Henry


On August 27th, somewhat unexpectedly, the Colombian government announced its willingness to restart peace talks with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), offering a glimmer of hope on the horizon after 60 years of protracted conflict.

Our partners’ response, as expressed in the statement of Colombians for Peace, reflected a generous sense of optimism. Their comments also urged key actors “to address structural problems at the root of this prolonged armed conflict,” including “transforming belief systems and outlawing the practices of killing and political persecution in favor of inclusion and the recognition of historic truths in authentic and dynamic democratic transition.”

The call of our Colombian partners to address structural impediments to lasting peace caused me to recall some important words from our faith story. These words from Luke’s Gospel have always stayed with me, in part because we are told that they were expressed by Jesus through his tears. The context is Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem. When he sees the great city, he weeps: “If you, even you, had only recognized on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes” (Luke 19:41-42).

What are the “things that make for peace,” whether in Israel-Palestine or Colombia, Southern Sudan or the Democratic Republic of Congo? Do we recognize them? Do we seek them? Are they our deepest commitment? Our partners in Colombia remind us that the “things that make for peace” are more than the absence of violence. They are also the presence of transformed beliefs and new collective understandings, of economic justice and democratic inclusion, of realized human rights and greater equality.

This is what our global partners strive for every day. We describe their work in different ways: community development, capacity building, human rights protection, democratic development, but it might also always be called the action of peace building. Global partners entreat us to “follow after the things that make for peace” (Romans 14:19), a task as crucial in a country like ours, striving to preserve peace, as it is in countries like Colombia striving to bring an end to war. Christ’s call to us is to be peace builders through working for justice, equality and inclusion—“the things that make for peace.” Wherever we are placed, may our actions be our “amen.”


KAIROS Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives
310 Dupont St. Suite 200, Toronto, ON, Canada M5R 1V9
Tel: 416-463-5312 | Toll-free: 1-877-403-8933| Fax: 416-463-5569