Delegates of Popular Movements from all over the world began the discussions for an action plan that is going to be presented to Pope Francis.
200 delegates from organizations of different parts of the world attended to the opening panel of the Third World Meeting of Popular Movements.
Members of Organizing Committee of WMPM welcomed all the asistants and explained the objectives of the Meeting: Cardinal Peter Turkson of PCJP; João Pedro Stédile, from Movimiento de los Trabajadores Sin Tierra (MST) – La Vía Campesina (Brasil); Juan Grabois, from Movimiento de Trabajadores Excluidos (MTE) – Confederación de Trabajadores de la Economía Popular (CTEP) (Argentina); Jockin Arputham, from National Slum Dwellers Federation of India – Slum Dwellers International (SDI) (India) and Charo Castelló, Hermandad Obrera de Acción Católico (HOAC) – Movimiento Mundial de Trabajadores Cristianos (MMTC) (España).
During the interventions the organizing committee remarked the principal subjects of the debate; Land, Housing and Work, including panels about Peoples and Democracy; Territory and Nature; and the situation of refugees. All these realities and worries are going to be analyzed, discussed and synthetized in an action plan that is going to be handed to Pope Francis November 5th.
Cardenal Turkson reminded the words of Holy Father in the Laudato sí, focalizing in the social exclusion determinated by two factors: social and environment, reflected as the two sides of a coin. “In this Meeting we have invited you to discuss how we can change things, it’s not only about being agents of change to the outside, but being agents of change to the inside”. He add “We’re not work searchers, we are work makers and when we talk about work, housing, land and democracy the starting point is real people and their real problems. Beyond statistics it’s about concrete people”. Therefore Cardinal Tursk insisted “we’re going to discuss wich are the changes we need, and Church as Popular Movements will work together to promote the deepest changes our society needs”.
Charo Castelló accentuate in the trayectory of this meeting since its beginning: “In the first Meeting we proposed to make a radiography of what was the reality of millions of people en the three dimensions of the evento: Land, housing and work. In the second one we assumed the commitment of the letter of Santa Cruz de la Sierra. In this third Meeting again in Rome, we want to make a step forward, it’s time to act, to mak. W have anylized the most different realities, indentify their principal problems, today we have to think what kind of politics to implement, with the only objective of the wellbeing of the people.”
João Pedro Stédile in his intervention said “We are facing a capitalism that express the delay, the exploitation, the exploited (…) the planet is being assaulted by the capital, who is being taking off nature from human beings”. He promoted delegades to “discuss new kind of popular politics. The democratic system of burgees form the French Revolution it’s not working anymore. People cannot exercise their political capital through vote. This time more than ever we need to continue the debate and formulate proposal fr the problem that humankind it’s going though”.
Later we had the words of Jockin Arputham, he insisted in the importance of the action plan that is going to conclude this third meeting “Speak less and do more. We have heard the words of Pope Francis, but we came here to work“. He referred to the necessity of start taking concrete actions in relation to the problems that have been discussed for a long time in the previous meetings.
The opening panel concluded with Juan Grabois “This Meeting is about action. Following the method of the Catholic social teaching, in the first meeting we devoted to SEE, to know each other, in the second one we devoted to Judge, we accorded a diagnostic and assumed commitments between the one hundred organizations that participated. Now it’s time to act (…) To build the strength of Popular Movements we need 5 values: Unity, Organization, Conscience, high Spirit and Action”.