The World Food Programme says that COVID fall-out threatens famines of ‘biblical proportions’, with an additional 265 million people possibly facing starvation by the end of 2020.
"Children born in Ireland, even those who spent nearly their entire life in the US, fared worse that those born in the US, potentially reflecting exposure to famine condition," say Vanderbilt University researchers.
In Ireland, the Society of St Vincent de Paul receives more than 130,000 calls for assistance a year – about 11 percent more than it did five years ago.
Globally, 124 million people are suffering from acute hunger and, in some cases, starvation – an increase from 80 million two years ago.
“The food they have in these camps is not enough. Some of them get only one meal a day.” – Auxiliary Bishop Daniel Adwok Kur of Khartoum
According to Dublin diocesan archivist, Noelle Dowling, some of the material on display on Friday night includes photographs and letters of thanks and appreciation from Vietnam, which suffered devastation during 20 years of war from 1955 until 1975.
“At a time when a record number of people around the world are displaced by violence, the international community needs to stand behind international law to ensure safety for people who have been forced to flee as a result of famine or civil unrest.”
Over 24 million people currently rely on food aid in South Sudan, Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya due to a combination of drought and conflict.
As head of the diplomatic corps in Ethiopia at the time of the famine, Archbishop Thomas White was responsible for coordinating the contributions of many countries and charities in support of those who were starving.
Aid has delivered so many success stories. Unfortunately, the spread of conflicts and the worsening impacts of climate change are increasingly out-pacing those efforts.
The plight of Patrick, himself a migrant, has been faced by many Irish people who have struggled to live and integrate into new cultures.
The parish of Devenish's memorial "calls us to address the poverty and famine in our own world today and constantly answer the call of the Gospel to reach out to those in need.”
“Migrants are our brothers and sisters in search of a better life, far away from poverty, hunger and exploitation, much like our forefathers at the time of the famine."
“We have to be careful of the fear factor that is sometimes generated on this issue and instead look at more creative ways of welcoming people into the country”: Primate.
Nuclear bombings in August 1945 are a “symbol of the enormous destructive power of humanity when it makes a distorted use of scientific and technical progress”.
“Ireland has always been one of the strongest supporters of the United Nations and some 90 Irish soldiers have lost their lives in the quest for worldwide peace.”