A huge thank you to all those who have been so deeply engaged in the Call for Conscience Campaign, which began on February 6, 2017. Here is a brief update on some of the key activities that have taken place and ask you once again to provide your support in the days ahead.
We are grateful to the many doctors, nurses, clergy and other advocates that have helped coordinate presentations in churches or other venues over the past month. While it is difficult to track all the activity, we know that well over 10,000 letters have been shared with Members of Provincial Parliament. Many supporters have also called their MPP and/or arranged for a meeting with their elected member. These are extremely impactful and we urge you to continue this activity. Earlier this week, Cardinal Collins wrote directly to Premier Kathleen Wynne. He has also met with the Minister of Health and Attorney General on this issue. In total the coalition has visited with approximately 60 MPPs.
Status of Bill 84
Second reading debate of Bill 84 is currently underway in the Ontario Legislature. We anticipate that shortly, debate will wrap up, at which time, a standing committee will be formed, to receive submissions and feedback on the current Bill before the legislature. The Coalition for HealthCARE & Conscience, along with many of our members, will provide submissions and request to appear as witnesses for these committee hearings.
More than a dozen doctors and nurses have participated in a media training session to prepare to answer questions around this topic. We will now begin a more proactive approach in urging journalists to cover this important issue in the days ahead.
We must continue to let our Members of Provincial Parliament know that this is a critically important issue. Here are some tangible ways you can assist the coalition:
- Pray for the campaign, those who seek assisted suicide and for health care workers conflicted over this most difficult dilemma.
- Utilize information leaflets and template letters to MPPs in your church or place of worship. All these resources can be found at: www.archtoronto.org/euthanasia
- Visit www.canadiansforconscience.ca and share your email address to ensure you are in the loop on the latest activity.
- If you’ve already written to your MPP, consider a phone call to their constituency office to let them know how important the issue is to you – be sure to let them know you are a constituent.
- We ask you to help spread the word by sharing the resources available at: http://bit.ly/callforconscience or www.archtoronto.org/euthanasia – please note we now have French and Chinese resources available on this site.
- View and share the 3 minute coalition video below.
Thank you for your ongoing support of this initiative. Your efforts continue to fuel all those who are working diligently to protect conscience rights in the Province of Ontario.
The Archdiocese of Toronto is accepting financial contributions for humanitarian relief following the disastrous effects of a serious earthquake on April 16.
The 7.8 magnitude earthquake and aftershocks have devastated huge areas of Ecuador, with nearly 600 people reported dead, another 5,700 injured and 24,000 families left homeless. Contributions can be made through our parishes and through the Archdiocese of Toronto online portal at http://www.archtoronto.org.
Relief workers from the official Catholic relief agency, Caritas Internationalis, are on the ground and assessing the need for assistance. Caritas teams are expected to begin distributing tarps, hygiene and cooking kits. There is also a need for tents and inflatable boats because roads to some of the affected areas are impassable. In the coming weeks and months, Caritas will assess longer-term shelter needs. The situation is very difficult in the affected regions, as poverty had already left people living in precarious conditions.
Those wishing to help may do so in the following ways:
• Online through the Archdiocese of Toronto website: http://www.archtoronto.org
• By phone through the Development Office – 416-934-3411
• Through the parish, making cheques payable to:
Name of Parish – Ecuador Earthquake – Humanitarian Relief
(Parishes are asked to gather funds and send one parish cheque to the Development Office, made out to Archdiocese of Toronto – Ecuador Earthquake.)
We offer our prayers for the victims of this natural disaster and those who have been displaced. Thank you for your ongoing efforts to help those in crisis in Ecuador.