Dear Confreres and Friends,
Happy New Year ! We have great plans for DSSG in 2016. Building on our activities from previous years, taking stock of our present situation and looking towards the future. We have strong DSSG focal points in Manila, Seattle, the Hague, Geneva, Washington DC and New York. We will revive our relationships with our old friends, particularly the Archdioceses of Manila and Cebu, the Holy See Missions to the UN in Geneva and New York, the International Alliance of Catholic Knights (IACK) and the Militia Immaculata (MI), and build new ones. We are forging dynamic new ties with the Sovereign Military Order of Malta (SMOM) and the Evangelical-Ecumenical Order of St. Luke.
We will make fuller use of the new DSSG Website, www.diplomatic.world, Facebook and Social Media and invite you to actively participate. A major thrust of DSSG will be to more concretely advance the art and science of diplomacy globally inspired by Catholic Social Teaching, particularly the groundbreaking works of our Holy Father His Holiness Pope Francis such as Laudato Si, as well as the Church’s Interfaith Initiatives. DSSG also takes the view that there are indeed many tracks of diplomacy, not only the professional foreign services of states and the international civil service. Faith Leaders, Academicians, Businessmen, Students, Civil Society leaders with an international perspective are certainly diplomats in their own right.
We were not quite able to flesh out the concept of “Chapters” of DSSG in cities, it appears we are better suited to be a network of individual diplomats around the world. So, the DSSG will focus on being a useful resource to individual members, coordinating through the advances in information technology. One particular activity I’d like to see is individual Confreres writing and posting about themselves and their diplomatic work, thus we would be able to better formulate activities of common interest. Also, we will leverage the excellent relations we collectively have with the United Nations, Governments, other Faith Organizations, the Business Community, Universities, Diasporas, et al, in support of our network and the professional, spiritual and civic interests of our members.
The DSSG will do its part in dealing with the global challenges identified by the Holy Father, particularly Climate Change, Religious Extremism, Refugees & Migration and Poverty & Development, and the new UN Agendas as expressed through the Sendai Framework on Disaster Risk Reduction, the Sustainable Development Goals, Paris Agreement on Climate Change, and the World Humanitarian Summit.
In Seattle, the DSSG continues to work with the Consular and International Affairs Community of the Pacific Northwest. In Geneva, our DSSG Group there continues to organize regular masses and get together with the support of the Holy See Mission. In Manila, we work closely with our illustrious advisers Cardinals Ricardo Vidal, Gaudencio Rosales, and Luis Antonio Tagle. We collaborate with the Philippine Government and Faith-Based Organization on advancing Interfaith Dialogue and the Humanitarian Role of the Church. Our Confreres in The Hague, Washington DC and New York also engage closely with their respective Church, Diplomatic and Humanitarian Communities.
The Society will be reinvigorated by becoming a founding member of the “Legio Triumviratus” (LT) – the Legion of the Triumvirate of the Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael. DSSG will constitute the Gabriel or Diplomatic, Interfaith and International Business leg of the Legion’s “Triad” – the other two being the “Michael” wing which brings together brothers and sisters from the military, police, coast guard, fire and other uniformed services, and the “Raphael” branch which reaches out to the healing professions – health, medical, dental, veterinary, nursing, EMT, search & rescue et al. Our founding activity will take place in Manila this quarter, a Holy Mass and Interfaith Service. For the LT we are inviting the Military Vicar and the Chaplain Corps of the Philippine Armed Forces to serve as our spiritual advisers. We intend to also reach out to the Chaplains of other countries to also assist us as we grow. It is interesting to note that the US’ Military Archdiocese also administers to the American Foreign Service.
Our membership and organization will be further strengthened. Please bear with us as we finalize our methods, structure and systems, stay tuned for announcements. I also intend to finalize our DSSG symbols, uniform and other insignia.
Thank you for your continuing support and confidence.
Pro Deo et Mundo !
Conf. Jesus R.S. Domingo DSSG