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Recent Events - 2016-2017: A Place at the Table

Social justice in an ageing society

2016-2017: A Place at the Table

The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference launced the 2016-17 Social Justice Statement in Sydney on 6 September. 'A Place at the table’ celebrates the value and dignity of older people in Australian life.

The Statement calls for justice for the elderly and recognition of the substantial contribution they make to society which should not be viewed in economic terms only.

We pray with and for the elderly 

A Prayer for all Ages

God of all creation, you are timeless and beyond all ages.

We who are growing old give thanks

for the years you have given us –

for family, friends and all those

who have enriched our lives.

We who are not yet old give thanks

for the older people in our lives:

for grandparents, loved ones, friends

and all who generously offer

the wise counsel of their years.

We who are growing old pray that we may be

patient with our ageing limbs

and difficulties in everyday tasks

we once did much more easily.

We who are not yet old pray

for patience and kindness

towards those who do not move as quickly

as we would sometimes like.

We who are growing old pray for good health

in our later years,

and forbearance when our health fails us.

We who are not yet old pray for good health

for those we love

and compassion towards those

who suffer ill health.

We who are growing old pray for prudence and sweet timing,

in offering our wisdom to the next generation,

while respecting their energy and creativity.

We who are not yet old pray for openness

and humility in receiving

the advice and guidance of our elders.

We who are growing old pray that we

may face our death with serenity and dignity.

We who are not yet old pray that we affirm

the sacredness of each person’s life

and accompany those who are dying

with gentleness and deep respect.

God of endless love, help us to understand

that we share a common life journey,

a call to live life to the full

and to strive to enable all creation to come

to the fullness of the Cosmic Christ. Amen

The structure of our communities is in a state of change with an ever increasing ageing population. It is estimated that the number of elderly Australians (aged over 65) will have more than doubled in the next few decades. As the proportion of older people in our population continues to increase there is the risk that our society will not be equipped to cope.

The Statement calls for justice for those who are most vulnerable and warns about a view of older people as burdensome or dispensable.

Read

The full Statement (PDF)

Sr Patty Fawkner’s address at the launch

Resources

Prayer card

Ten Steps

PowerPoint

Visit the ACSJC website for more information

 

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