Luke Stocking

Luke Stocking

Stocking is Development and Peace Deputy Director of Public Awareness & Engagement, Ontario and Atlantic Regions.

“We’ll be coming to visit from July 22 to July 30,” I told my mother-in-law, who had come to Windsor from her home across the border in Michigan to see my son play soccer. 

Graduation season is upon us. Universities, high schools, elementary schools and these days even kindergarten cohorts celebrate and move forward to places unknown to them. 

The Minister of Citizenship and Immigration gestured to the buildings surrounding us on Parliament Hill. “These are the people’s houses,” said the Honourable Ahmed Hussen. “These are your institutions — please feel free and at home.” 

“Too bad the global climate strike happened while you guys were on March break,” I teased my son.

The cross I wear around my neck each day is a relatively large wooden one made by young people living in the poorest and most dangerous areas of Colombia. It is one of hundreds of thousands that they made as part of a project supported by Development and Peace. The crosses were given as a special gift from St. John Paul II at the World Youth Day papal Mass in Toronto on July 28, 2002. 

I was troubled to hear my Ottawa colleague describe what she saw Dec. 8 on Parliament Hill. 

Live simply so that others may simply live. These words haunt me. These words inspire me. 

How little it takes. How few people cross our borders before we allow narratives of fear to start taking hold of us. 

For the sake of the planet, the rights of Indigenous peoples and the future, the Catholic Church in Canada spoke out against the pipeline. 

Everyone in the group knew the greatest commandment. Love God, love your neighbour. Simple to say. Hard to do. 

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