Reconciliation and Peacebuilding in Post-War Sri Lanka by Fr. J. M. Joseph Jeyaseelan, CMF

Reconciliation and Peacebuilding in Post-War Sri Lanka by Fr. J. M. Joseph Jeyaseelan, CMF

The Mindanao Peacebuilding Institute Foundation, Inc. is please to share with you that Claretian Publications is publishing a new book by MPI Alumnus Fr. J. M. Joseph Jeyaseelan, CMF (2018) titled: Reconciliation and Peacebuilding in Post-War Sri Lanka: through the Healing of Memories and the Role of the Catholic Church.

The Claretian Missionaries in Sri Lanka are organizing a book launching for Saturday, June 2, 2018.

About the Book

This book explores the role of the healing of memories for post-war reconciliation in Sri Lanka. In the intervening years since the 26-year civil war came to an end in 2009, hardly anything substantial has been done in terms of healing the past wounds and building a new and reconciled Sri Lanka where all her citizens could live with equal dignity and in peace. Moreover, even in the meager post-war reconciliation efforts that are in place, the efficacy and role of the healing of memories have been grossly disregarded. Anyone interested in the role of the healing of memories for post-conflict reconciliation, explored primarily through the lens of practical theology, will find in this book useful insights and recommendations that can be adapted to other contexts as well. Since healing of memories is related closely to psychology, this book has integrated insights from the field of modern psychology, namely cognitive theories. The concept of the Moral Imagination has also been applied to come to certain conclusions and recommendations. This book suggests many ways the Catholic Church can better contribute to the post-war reconciliation efforts in Sri Lanka, and initiate certain projects geared toward this end, using the healing of memories as a primary route.

J. M. JOSEPH JEYASEELAN is a Catholic priest and a member of the Congregation of Claretian Missionaries. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Peradeniya; a Bachelor of Theology from the Pontifical Urban University, Rome; and a Doctor of Ministry from Catholic Theological Union at Chicago, USA.

An essential resource for Christian faith-based peacebuilding

Fr. Jeyaseelan's work makes a major contribution to our understanding of how the healing of memories may be brought about, and how the Church can accompany this process. It deserves a wide readership in Sri Lanka, and well beyond to the many similar settings around the world today.

Robert Schreiter, CPPS
Catholic Theological Union, Chicago

This work has depth and erudition but is still accessible to the non-specialist reader especially people of faith. The book is unequivocal that the work of reconciliation is not an optional extra for Christians but is at the heart of God's work in the world in which we are invited to participate. My hope is that the publication of this book will lead to a series of seminars happening within the Catholic Church, ecumenically, and with different faiths to help forge a comprehensive way forward for healing of memories work to be rolled out across the land.

Michael Lapsley, SSM
Founder, Institute for Healing of Memories - South Africa

The community of peacebuilders in Sri Lanka owes a debt of gratitude to Fr. Joseph Jeyaseelan for undertaking this task of analyzing the Sri Lankan conflict and peace process from a loftier perspective that is both religious and academic. As trusted message-bearers with the moral authority and the social networks to mobilize support and public action, religious groups could spread the message of peace in effective and sustainable ways. Fr. Jeyaseelan's book points to the right direction.

Jehan Perera
Executive Director, National Peace Council - Colombo

This book is a must read for all who seek to build lasting peace and reconciliation anywhere in the world. Father Jeyaseelan, with in-depth research, analysis, and honest reflection, not only shows a way forward for the Catholic Church to play a productive role in reconciliation and peacebuilding in post-war Sri Lanka, utilizing healing of memories, but a way forward for all seeking these same ends, no matter the context.

Gloria Hage
Executive Director, Institute for Healing of Memories - North America


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