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“Safeguarding children and adults is about transforming human relationships, from violence to dialogue, from abuse to equity, so that social interactions become the best shield to prevent abuses.” (Jeyaraj, Guiney & Racionero-Plaza 2023). The Jesuit European Committee for Primary and Secondary Education (JECSE), together with the Zentrum für Ignatianische Pädagogik (Centre for Ignatian Pedagogy - ZIP), has been working in recent years to support schools in our region in this transformation. Through online trainings, conferences and consultancy, we support the development of a culture of protection in our institutions. In March 2022, we were pleased to invite representatives from our schools to come together to reflect on important safeguarding issues at a conference entitled “Protecting Minors in Our Schools: Preventing and Responding to (Sexualised) Violence”. Over 130 representatives from Jesuits schools in 23 countries gathered in Ludwigshafen, both in person and online, to discuss this crucial topic. Following the post-conference video, we are pleased to offer now the book: “Protecting Minors in our Schools. Preventing and Responding to Sexualised Violence”.  It is a collection of  contributions prepared by the keynote speakers of our Safeguarding Conference in Ludwigshafen (2022). The articles presented here start with  outlining the context of the problem and move on describing in detail specific safeguarding issues.  Proposed responses to the current challenges in this area cover model solutions and practical suggestions for their implementation. We hope that this book will be an impulse for further reflection on safeguarding, an inspiration for improving existing policies and protocols and designing new prevention schemes.  It is our objective to sustainably strengthen a culture of protection in our Jesuit and companion schools.  
On February 21st, we inaugurated our campaign at Atelier 29 in Brussels. This hybrid event captivated an audience of over 150 attendees. Filipe Martins, SJ, the director of JESC, and Alberto Alemanno, the founder of The Good Lobby, unveiled the core motivations and objectives steering our coalition. Béla Kuslits, the Senior Ecology Officer at JESC, presented our trio of policy proposals:  An Interinstitutional Agreement safeguarding the rights of Future Generations. The appointment of a Commissioner for Future Generations, serving also as Vice President. The incorporation of a Future Generations Impact Assessment within the Better Regulations Guidelines. Following these insightful introductions, a panel discussion featuring eight coalition members delved into the social and political hurdles confronting our campaign. The dialogue highlighted the varied insights coalition members contribute to this advocacy endeavor, with a special focus on the pivotal role of youth organizations. The event concluded with a networking reception, where engaging conversations with our guests sparked promising opportunities for broadening our collaborative efforts.
When my novice director asked me about a possible destination for the pastoral experiment, I suggested to go to Brussels. The apostolate in Brussels for novices and regents is basically twofold: Testimonies of the faith at the catholic religion classes in the four European schools and work in the ecumenical “Chapel for Europe” in the heart of the European quarter. Both suited me and seemed to fit in to my personal journey with Christ. I am 27 years old and I was born in Osnabrück in north-western Germany. Before entering novitiate, I studied history, English and philosophy to become a teacher. I saw going to the European schools to speak with students about my personal journey in the religious life as a good occasion to see whether teaching was still something that suits me.  I felt also drawn to Brussels by the large international community and the linguistic and the cultural diversity in the city, alongside the opportunity to improve my French. At the beginning, I had no idea what to expect in the schools. Right before the first class, I asked the teacher what to say, as I had not prepared anything, and she said in reply: “Just talk to them!”, which is what I then did. I usually only explained briefly what the Jesuits are and what a novice is and then let the students ask whatever they wanted to know. Although the setting was always quite similar, each testimony was a new encounter which created an open space for the Spirit to work in. I was overwhelmed by the openness with which the students and the teachers met me and I found it to be especially joyful to share the faith with others. At the Chapel for Europe, directed by Fr. Bernd Günther SJ, I helped to organise the events which took place. Especially fruitful for me was the preparation of a “Retreat in Daily life” for this Lenten time. But I also surprisingly found the Lord in the small practical tasks for the maintenance of the Chapel. I was blessed to also get to know the Spanish speaking Catholic community ministered to by Fr. Alberto Ares SJ and other Christians from various backgrounds, all working to proclaim the Good News in Brussels. Thus, the Catholicity of our faith became especially palpable during my time here, making me truly feel part of a worldwide community. I did the testimonies in the schools in English, German and French. The French was really challenging, but I learned that true communication which really addresses the other and creates a “resonance” (Hartmut Rosa) instead of merely focusing on personal achievement is the key to success here. The words of our Lord that “whoever seeks to preserve his life will lose it, but whoever loses it will save it” (Lk 17,33) are also true when it comes to languages. I also greatly enjoyed visiting the different Churches and old Abbeys in Brussels for prayer and to connect to the history of our faith in this place, which, albeit in an increasing minority situation, lasts until today. I travel back to Innsbruck with a rucksack full of rich experiences which still needs to be unpacked and I am deeply grateful to God for the time in Brussels. 
Since the start of the war in Ukraine, the organizations of the Jesuits have served and accompanied 100.765 people fleeing violence. Coordinated by JRS Europe and the Xavier Network, in collaboration with NGOs and local partners, the Society of Jesus has provided emergency aid, shelter, psychosocial support, education, and integration, among other services.  “Since day one, we have been accompanying refugees fleeing the war with a coordinated holistic response in Ukraine, neighbouring countries, and across Europe. While it might not be on newspapers covers anymore, this crisis is still unfolding, and we are committed to provide long term support”.  “Our hearts are filled with hope from the many testimonies of both refugees and host communities that embrace solidarity and integration. They continue to show us that in a context full of pain, stress and sorrow, hope is still alive. We are immensely thankful to the continuous solidarity of many generous people, foundations and organizations who trust in the work of the Society of Jesus”.  As the emergency continues, the needs of the refugees have evolved, and the response has adapted. While during the first year more than half of the support activities were aimed at short-term and emergency aid, in 2023 that has dropped to 17%. Meanwhile, medium-term activities, such as housing and education, have more than doubled from 20% to 52% in 2023. However, the biggest increase was in long term accompaniment, more than tripling from less than 10% in 2022 to 31% in 2023.  The One Proposal, which was presented in July 2022 after an in-depth needs assessment, encompasses a wide range of services to be provided to an originally projected 73,168 people over the course of 3 years. Since then, it has been continuously revised and expanded with yearly needs assessments.  It addresses the needs of forcibly displaced Ukrainians across Europe, from immediate humanitarian response and emergency assistance in Ukraine and its neighbours, to long-term programmes to promote and integrate refugees. Therefore, it will benefit internally displaced people, refugees of Ukrainian nationality and refugees of other nationalities, displaced by the conflict in Ukraine.  The report, as well as dozens of stories of the people being helped through the One Proposal, are available at jrseurope.org/en/project/the-one-proposal/. You will find a summary and testimonies in the attached factsheets. You can also find more information about how to donate and/or take action to help refugees and other forcibly displaced people.  We remain united in working together on this common response in Ukraine, as well as on other common projects where we accompany, serve and advocate for so many refugees and forcibly displaced people across Europe.
Fr António Sant’Ana SJ was appointed European Coordinator of the Pope’s Prayer Network by Fr. Dalibor Renić SJ, President of the Jesuit Conference of European Provincials. He will be the European Assistant of the International Director
Take a look at these images that cry out the injustices of our world. These unjust situations engender all kinds of suffering: violence, attacks on democracy, desertification, malnutrition. Inspired by the Gospel and united through Jesus Christ to those who suffer from injustice, the Society of Jesus is committed to social justice every day and in every part of the world. A message from the Secretariat for Social Justice and Ecology.

UPCOMING EVENTS

3-9
Sun - Sat
Mar 2024
BUCHAREST
Ireland
RCM + AGM JRS Europe Regional Coordination Meeting + Annual General Meeting of JRS Europe READ MORE
9
Sat
Mar 2024
WARSAW
Poland
Diaconal Ordinations The following Jesuits will be ordained deacons on March 9th 2024 at 11 am at the Sanctuary of St. Andrew Bobola in Warsaw (Poland):  Sebastian Lelek SJ (PME),  Wojciech Leśniak SJ (PME),  Jan Majda SJ (PMA),  Ivan Marinković (CRO) READ MORE
13-15
Wed - Fri
Mar 2024
DUBLIN
Ireland
Xavier Network Meeting Meeting of the Xavier Network network in Dublin READ MORE
19-20
Tue - Wed
Mar 2024
ONLINE
Consult JCEP Consult of the president of Jesuit Conference of European Provincials. It takes place online. READ MORE