Columns

From the category archives: Bob McKeon

Bob McKeon

Trekking a volunteer path leads on to a lifetime of service

Bob McKeon

July 18, 2011

A few weeks ago, I was invited to talk with a group of summer interns at Mustard Seed in inner city Edmonton. For the past several years, Mustard Seed has provided a summer employment opportunity for several young adults seeking an experience of Christian outreach and service with inner city men, women and children.

The summer workers get to work in the different programs of the agency including emergency food and clothing, community development projects and public education and advocacy initiatives.

Read the rest of entry »

Tell politicians to target homelessness

Bob McKeon

June 20, 2011

On March 17, Archbishop Richard Smith joined with 22 other faith leaders to make a public "shared commitment to eliminate homelessness in our community" and "to support the challenging goals of Edmonton's 10 Year Plan to End Homelessness."

Local congregations and faith organizations were invited to get more involved with the issues of homelessness and affordable housing. A Congregational Housing Action Guide has been prepared to assist local parishes. Several hundred copies have now been distributed across the Edmonton region.

Read the rest of entry »

Marking your X is just the beginning

Bob McKeon

May 23, 2011

We had our latest federal election on May 2. The Conservative Party under Stephen Harper won a majority after several years of minority governments. Almost certainly, the next federal election will not occur for another four years.

Read the rest of entry »

Catholics support the dignity of labour

Bob McKeon

April 18, 2011

The Jesuits in the United States have published a book on Catholic social teaching with the title Our Best Kept Secret. I am dismayed how often this turns out to be true, even with Catholics highly committed to practising their faith.

Twice in recent weeks I have sat down with Catholic men who over a period of many years have lived out their personal commitments to social justice though active involvement in their trade unions. In each case, they said they had never heard about Church teaching that addresses issues of human dignity in the workplace and that affirms the vital role labour unions play as agents for justice. In each case, they regretted not learning about their Church's social teaching decades earlier.

Read the rest of entry »

We help the needy because we are Catholic

Bob McKeon

March 21, 2011

Last month, the Nothing More Beautiful presenters at the basilica spoke a powerful social justice message. One quote from Lesley-Anne Knight, the secretary-general of Caritas Internationalis, struck a special chord with me.

She said: "I am sometimes asked why, as a Catholic organization, we (Caritas) deliver aid to people of other faiths, Muslims and Buddhists. My answer is always that we help people not because they are Catholic, but because we are Catholics."

Read the rest of entry »

Restorative justice heals souls, communities

Bob McKeon

February 21, 2011

Last year, as part of my work with the archdiocesan Office for Social Justice, I was part of a committee organizing a provincial Restorative Justice conference. more . . .

Read the rest of entry »

Indigenous rights equal human rights

Bob McKeon

January 24, 2011

Last Nov. 12 was an important day for human rights in Canada. On that day Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced that the Government of Canada was endorsing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. more . . .

Read the rest of entry »

Time to end poverty in Alberta is now!

Bob McKeon

December 20, 2010

Last week I was talking with a long-time church volunteer at a food bank in my neighbourhood. She was commenting on the continuing high numbers of people coming week after week requesting a food hamper. What was especially troubling for her was that 40 per cent of those being fed from her food bank were children. more . . .

Read the rest of entry »

Time to raise the bar on oilsands standards

Bob McKeon

October 18, 2010

The public debates around the Athabasca oilsands appear to be entering a new phase. We see new developments in the media almost every day.

Until recently, provincial government and industry leaders insisted that the oilsands plants had no measurable pollution effect on the Athabasca River despite the claims made by environmentalists and independent scientists. When doctors spoke of serious damage to human health in downstream aboriginal communities, government officials bullied them into silence. more . . .

Read the rest of entry »

Church must walk its talk with employees

Bob McKeon

July 26, 2010

Last month, I had the challenging experience of making a presentation to an all-party committee of the Alberta Legislature. The presentation addressed changes to the Alberta government’s minimum wage policy.

My presentation spoke of the need for a living wage based on a respect for the dignity of human work as articulated in Catholic social teaching.

Read the rest of entry »

Pages: Prev1234NextReturn Top