: Oct 15, 2017
On October 15th, close to 3,000 students and staff from the Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board will embark on the 14th Annual “Walk with Christ: Justice for the Poor” Pilgrimage in support of Third World development projects in Uganda, Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
Deemed to be the largest service project in the history of the board, the pilgrimage is more than simply fundraising, says Dr. Paul Beaudette, Program Leader for Religion and Family Life: “It is a social justice project that combines the three activities of prayer, development education and fundraising.”
The walk provides an opportunity for students to learn about social justice issues in the Developing South, particularly around the imbalance of wealth, adds Beaudette.
“Much of our wealth, directly or indirectly, comes to us at the expense of the poor South – three-quarters of the people in our world who live on only twenty percent of the world’s wealth and resources.”
The activity also seeks to raise students’ awareness of the injustice of world hunger and inadequate health care, shelter and education.
“As a Catholic school community, the pilgrimage gives us the opportunity to do what the Lord asks of us: to act justly, love tenderly, and walk humbly with our God (Micah 6:8),” says Beaudette.
The pilgrimage will begin with a Mass at Cathedral High School at 11:00 a.m. on Sunday morning, October 15th. Students will set out from Cathedral on an 8-kilometre walk up the Wentworth escarpment rail trail to St. Anthony Daniel Catholic Elementary School, where they will bused back to their home schools.
The event is hoped to draw public attention around social justice issues. “Three thousand people marching along city streets to raise money and public awareness around Third World poverty makes a very powerful statement within our community,” says Pilgrimage Committee Co-chair Gino Pizzoferrato.
Since the first pilgrimage in May 2004, the event has raised over $500,000 – monies which have supported ADESJO (Association for the Development of San José de Ocoa) in the Dominican Republic; St. Joseph’s Home for Boys in Port-au-Prince, Haiti: St. Gabriel’s Parish in Beau Séjour, Haiti; Catholic Dioceses of Southwestern Uganda; the Holy Child Association; and Development and Peace's Emergency Appeal Fund.
Donations are always welcome and can dropped off at any Hamilton Catholic school or the Catholic Education Centre at 90 Mulberry Street in downtown Hamilton. Tax receipts will be issued for amounts over $25.
For more information, please contact Kimberley Bullard at firstname.lastname@example.org