Fr.General's visit to Mullaitivu 22nd February  2018

Fr. General’s address on JRSS in Mullaitivu on 22nd February, 2018

I am happy to note that the Jesuit Reconciliation and Solidarity Sri Lanka (JRSS) is conducting a frontier mission in the North of East of Sri Lanka accompanying the war affected people by building their lives as persons, families and communities. It is remarkable that this new apostolic engagement of the Society of Jesus of Sri Lanka is involved in serving 3,200 children in 120 villages. The Gospel says, “Whatever you do to the least of my children you do unto me”. So, I consider this ministry is an important ministry in the context of post-conflict reconstruction of Sri Lanka. As GC 36 notes, promoting reconciliation is the core of our apostolate and I hope the program will form young children to become men and women for others. I am also happy to see that the JRSS will be taking its program forward, with activities to accompany the children until they complete higher education.

I am told that there are 190 teachers, all women, accompanying these children in the villages. These women are an integral part of our effort to bring reconciliation and peace. JRSS empowers these women, listens to their cries by having regular capacity-building programs and other kinds of interventions. The target group of JRSS is not only children but also these women who are the victims of war as well. The joys and hopes, the grief and anguish of the people of our time, especially of those who are poor or afflicted, are the joys and hopes, the grief and anguish of the followers of Christ as well. This is true of JRSS as well.

Early childhood development is important. Many children, in different parts of the world, are often deprived of the basic needs of food, education and sanitation. JRSS through its regular program of providing nutritious food, regular training in sanitation and providing access to education, enables the children to have basic standard of living in the war-affected communities. Children are the signs of the kingdom of God. I hope the 120 villages you work in are a launching pad for the province to have greater involvement in building up and reconciling the war-affected communities of Sri Lanka. As the JRSS name itself indicates, reconciliation between ethnic groups should be the cornerstone of our mission. I encourage the province to continue the mission of JRSS so that the future generations will have better opportunities and a more congenial atmosphere to live in this country.

I invoke God’s abundant blessings on the children, the Director, the staff and the people of all the villages you work in, so that this mission may be carried forward for God’s Greater Glory.

View Images