Bishops call on G8 leaders to rebuild trust towards lasting recovery

Also called for greater transparency in matters of finance and taxation

The G8 summit is being held in Co Fermanagh next week

The G8 summit is being held in Co Fermanagh next week


Catholic bishops have called on the world leaders attending the G8 summit being held in Co Fermanagh next week to rebuild trust and solidarity to aid lasting recovery.

The comments were made in a statement released at the conclusion of a summer meeting of the Irish Catholic Bishops Conference in Maynooth.

The bishops discussed the values that informed choices in matters of social and economic policy, and underlined the need for the value of solidarity to be the guiding principle in decisions currently facing world leaders.

They agreed that against the backdrop of widespread suffering caused by poverty, inequality and social exclusion, solidarity was needed to rebuild trust, restore relationships and give hope for a real and lasting recovery.

Greater transparency
They also called for greater transparency in matters of finance and taxation and stated that the protection of the rights of the poorest and most vulnerable was not only a question of charity, but is primarily a question of justice.

“It is a responsibility arising from our duty to care for our neighbour. It is also an essential prerequisite for a truly prosperous society; without fairness and social cohesion we will never achieve lasting prosperity,” the statement read.

They added that it was a “scandal” that despite technological advancements, one in eight people throughout the world went to bed hungry, including millions of children.

“A more just and equitable distribution of resources is both achievable and imperative,” they added.

The conference also heard that a support service for survivors of physical, sexual and emotional abuse received a significant increase in calls last year.

Bishops updated
Members of the Towards Healing counselling and support service updated bishops on its 2012 annual report and the work which the service has undertaken over the past year.

During 2012, Towards Healing saw an increase in the demand for its services, which include: helpline support, face- to-face counselling, psycho-educational group work, self- help practical workshops, friendly call, restorative justice and advocacy.

The number of calls received by the helpline amounted to almost 19,000, while in face-to-face counselling the service provided more than 29,000 sessions to 1,600 clients.