Ceremonies around the attack on the Great Mosque of Québec: Centre justice et foi plays an active role

February 1, 2019 — The deadly attack on the Great Mosque of Quebec City on January 29, 2017 still haunts the minds of many Quebecers and Canadians. It provided an opportunity for collective reflection on the spiral of hatred and Islamophobic violence. And also to look for ways out of this spiral of intolerance. For several decades, Jesuit Apostolates - including the Centre justice et foi - have sought to contribute to mutual understanding through intercultural and interreligious dialogue.

Vigil

Centre justice et foi and the fight against Islamophobia

Last week, two ceremonies were held to honour the memory of the victims of the attack on the Great Mosque of Quebec City, the first in Montreal, at McGill University's Redpath Library, and the second at Laval University's Pavillon Alphonse-Desjardins. The Centre justice et foi (CJF) contributed modestly but no less in solidarity to these two ceremonies. First through its photographic exhibition QuébécoisEs, musulmanEs, et après?, which was exhibited on the margins of these memorial ceremonies. Then by the presence of Mouloud Idir, in charge of the Living Together sector, at the Montreal commemoration, where he challenged the political class about the climate of Islamophobia that continues to prevail in society.

For several years now, the CJF has been fighting intolerance and Islamophobia, sometimes through positions on this subject, sometimes through meetings and public activities promoting intercultural and interreligious dialogue. The exhibition QuébécoisEs, musulmanEs, et après? is a good example. This photographic exhibition focuses on the professional, spiritual and daily life of our fellow citizens of the Muslim faith, in order to defuse the clichés and stereotypes associated with these people and their religion. In short, to present Muslims from here in their simplicity, diversity and complexity, giving them back their full human depth.

The Centre justice et foi also contributes to intercultural dialogue through its tour on Montreal's Muslim diversity. At the end of a guided and animated tour allowing participants to discover certain places associated with the Muslim presence in Montreal, the public is invited to hear the life stories of men and women of the Muslim faith. This helps to deconstruct many clichés and stereotypes about Muslims.

The CJF also embodies in its own way the spirituality of the encounter of which Pope Francis was the proponent. In particular through the feminist group Maria'M. Beyond the sometimes impassable theological differences, there is the possibility of a truly transcendent friendship, that is, one that is able to rise above it in order to focus on what brings these Christian and Muslim women together. The fight against sexism and patriarchy, for example.

The Society of Jesus and interreligious dialogue

Interreligious dialogue has a very long history in the life of the Society of Jesus. The Jesuits distinguished themselves from some of their missionary confreres by a sometimes radical practice of the inculturation of Christianity. And by a desire to better understand the culture and religious universe of the peoples they were (certainly) trying to evangelize.

This tradition of inculturation has also been combined with a desire to break with the contemptuous and intolerant attitude of the Church of yesteryear toward non-Catholic and non-Christian religious traditions, particularly Jews, and even more so in the aftermath of the Shoah. The time of the Second Vatican Council was essential in rejecting these contemptuous and deadly attitudes. In addition to Pope John XXIII's personal commitment to the delicate issue of the struggle against Catholic anti-Judaism and anti-Semitism, it is worth noting the decisive role of two Jesuits in the elaboration of the Vatican II Declaration Nostra Aetate: Cardinal Augustin Bea, SJ and theologian John Courtney Murray, SJ. To which can also be added the Canadian theologian Gregory Baum, who, although not a Jesuit, played a key role in the elaboration of this founding text. As a promoter of Jewish-Christian dialogue in Canada, our late companion Stéphane Valiquette is also an illustrious representative of this tradition of interreligious dialogue. Just like the Italian Jesuit Paolo dall'Oglio, promoter of Islamic-Christian dialogue and founder of the monastery of Mar Moussa in Syria.





Recent News

May 16, 2019 — This past Saturday, May 11, the Jesuit Province of Canada celebrated the priestly ordination of Adam Douglas Hincks, SJ (Canada) and Edward Dawson Penton, SJ (Canada) and 5 diaconal ordinations at Saint Paul's Basilica in Toronto.

May 16, 2019 — Here is a brief summary of news and events that have happened or will happen in the next few days.

Father Gilles Morissette died in the evening of May 12, 2019, at the infirmary of Richelieu. He was in his 80th year and in religious life for 56 years. He devoted much of his time to spiritually accompanying people "who have been placed on his way".

May 16, 2019 — The magazines Relations and Au cœur du monde have just launched their new editions. These have us travlling to various places leading us to view the world in a critical and contemplative manner.

May 16, 2019 — From May 1 to 3, dozens of Directors of Apostolates gathered at the Villa St. Martin retreat centre in Montreal. They began to reflect about that very same question: how to start appropriating the UAP in our local Canadian contexts.

May 16, 2019 — The Jesuit Curia in Rome has just published a set of resources entitled: “Praying with the Preferences”, which provides seven documents to enable the reader not only to pray but to enter more deeply into the journey of renewal and conversion offered by the UAP.

April 23, 2019 — In honor of Earth Day this week, JRS/USA and the Jesuit Conference Office of Justice and Ecology are answering your questions about climate and displacement.

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