Colonization

Posted by Spalding Hurst

February 26, 2021

The mountains shall yield peace for the people, and the hills justice.” (Psalm 72:3)

The glimpse that Sister Carlette provides into the colonization of Belize opens our eyes and minds to the lasting impacts of colonization everywhere. Countries that have taken conquest over foreign peoples and lands have violated land and human rights by not only commodifying God’s invaluable creation, but by also devastating future development and equality in those lands. The effects of continued violence and conquest on behalf of the developed world seep into nearly all areas of life in the developing world, including the environment. Today, developed countries are responsible for 79% of historical carbon emissions, though developing countries bear more of the effects of a changing climate.

What role has your country played in colonization? How has that role influenced your perspective of power and justice? How can our spirituality go deeper to account for our painful histories and pave the way to a future of opportunity for all?

Please reflect on the following poem: “This Land Belongs to No One” by Hila Ratzabi

This land belongs to no one but God. The Earth was here before us and will endure after we are gone. Let us walk gently upon this precious earth, taking only what we need to sustain future generations.

We acknowledge the history of pain, disease, and bloodshed the Native peoples’ endured when they were colonized. Though we can’t reverse the course of history, let us not ignore it. Let us look history in the eye and accept its painful truth. 

Let us honor the memory of those who died on this land, who lost their sovereignty. Let us honor the Native people who, to this day, keep their sacred traditions and culture alive and seek to reclaim, reassert, and revive their sovereignty.

5 Comments

  1. Brenda Gonzales

    Thank you Carlette for calling us to reflect deeper on the sin of colonization and how to daily be the change we want to see in the world.

    Reply
  2. Marcie M Heil SCNA

    I like these stories and the reflections – They help me understand the relationship between the powerful and the underserved nations of the world – and the effects of climate change. Thank you, Sr. Carlette and all involved in this series.

    Reply
  3. Ann Palatty

    Colonisation reaches its peak when the colonised take on the values and cultures of the colonisers. In India too he residue of such effects remain. The real freedom comes when the oppressors are rid of with their systems and traditions. Even the Church is not free of this type of colonisation.

    Reply
  4. Rita Puthenkalam

    As part of our own sel-examination, it will be good for all of us also to see what traces of it all are still in our own selves.

    Reply
  5. Name *Joel

    Colonization and it’ s effects are painful realities of Belize, India and other countries. We know the truth that the rich, ruling class and the powerful sided with the colonizers.
    We the present generation need to own the consequences and acknowledge our share in environmental injustice. This will be part of our Lenten penance.

    Reply

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