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The Great American Solar Eclipse 2017

[caption id="attachment_4810" align="alignright" width="296"] Blog by Sr. Amy McFrederick, OP[/caption] For the past few weeks, there has been so much hype about the first time in about 40 years we in North America will be treated to a complete solar Eclipse today, August 21, 2017.  I must admit I am excited with my pinhole mirror ready to project it onto my awaiting white card, hopeful that the clouds will get out of the way for this event. How much we depend on the ever present sun to light and warm our planet, and it does so with no discrimination based on our human made borders! To see the sun and its radiant light blotted out for even just a few minutes in the middle of the day is a bit scary, even though we face the nightly darkness at the end of each day without much angst. The news has also focused lately on a “social eclipse” occurring in our country--White Supremist, Nazi, and KKK groups coming out in broad daylight spreading the darkness of hate and exclusion, thereby repudiating the vision of a culture of peaceful inclusion proclaimed in our US Constitutions and Statue of Liberty. As I watch this, I am alarmed to see the violence meets violence reaction of some anti-Nazi groups and I am reminded of Jesus’ warning: “Those who take up the sword will perish by the sword.”  The darkness grows as violence spreads. Ken Butigan recently wrote: “Campaign Nonviolence is going public September 16-24 across the United States and beyond to call out the terror of violence—and to mobilize toward a culture of peace and nonviolence.  At a time when violence is incessantly touted—from reckless talk about nuclear war with North Korea, to support for white supremacy and hate groups, to attacks on immigrants and Muslims, to a dramatic surge in military spending—tens of thousands of people from every state across the country, and in cities around the globe, will advocate for a new nonviolent direction for their lives, communities, nations, and world. As many as one thousand local actions—marches, rallies, vigils and other forms of peaceful witness and resistance to be held throughout the third week of September—will publicly declare that nonviolent options are effective, powerful, and needed now more than ever.  They will invite our society, and every society, to reject the grip of violence on our minds and our policies, and to discover instead the life-giving power of active and creative nonviolence for a world where everyone counts.” This is a moment when all followers of Christ need to come out like the sun after a total eclipse and let the light of their love banish the darkness, heeding St. Catherine’s admonition: “Preach the truth as if you had a million voices. It is silence that kills the world.” [The artwork is by Jan Schlichting, OP.]  

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