Dominican Sisters of Peace March for Families

Across the country, Dominican Sisters of Peace joined rallies and marches to end family separation on June 30.

From left: Dominican Sisters of Peace Joseph Leo Pietrowski, Mary Brigid Gregory, Susan C. Morris, Mai-Dung Nguyen, Judy Morris, Charlene Moser, Elaine DesRosiers and Marilyn Pierson at the End Family Separation rally in Louisville, KY. Not shown are Sisters Barbara Fava, Barbara Sullivan, Catherine Mahady and Associate Linda Medley.

Twelve Sisters and Associate in Louisville, KY, marched and carried signs supporting families. The attendees chose two tactics to maximize exposure to our message, with some joining the march to the immigration

office, while others settled into a well-traveled location to post signs and meet with other attendees.

Associate Jerry Stein joined 150 marchers in Amarillo with about 150 others.  He said that several faith communities were represented, but he wished more Catholics had been in attendance.

Dominican Sisters of Peace Justice Promoter Sr. Barbara Kane was attending a conference in Illinois but took time out to attend the rally being held in Downer’s Grove, IL.

Sr. Theresa Fox was accompanied by her niece Adele Park at the Keep Families Together rally in Oakland, CA. Sr. Theresa was particularly impressed with a ten-year-old girl who gave a moving speech to the crowd.

In New Orleans, Sr, Suzanne Brauer and Sr. Mary Dominic Savio Estorge were joined by Associates Chris and Kevin Cahalan to support families and just resolutions for immigrants, refugees, and Dreamers.

Sr. Theresa Fox, OP, and her niece Adele Park in Oakland, CA.

Dominican Sisters of Peace Martina Stegman and Rita Birzer, from the Congregation’s Oxford, MI, Motherhouse joined over 250 other activists at the “Families Belong Together” Rally in Pontiac, MI. After listening to speeches by local elected representatives of the community, the group marched around the block to stand by Woodward Ave. with their signs.

In every community, at every rally, the demands of the marchers were the same:

  • Reunite families now. Permanently end family separation and immediately reunify those that have been separated.
  • End family detention. Children and families deserve due process, not indefinite imprisonment. Children do not belong in baby cages and internment-like camps. Family incarceration is not the solution to family separation.
  • End ‘Zero Tolerance.’ Reverse the Trump administration’s policy that created this crisis and chaos to begin with. Parents should not be criminally prosecuted for doing what all parents do, which is bring their children to safety. This horrible nightmare for families will only end when Trump permanently stops his 100% prosecution policy.

Please join the Dominican Sisters of Peace and all people of conscience in working for and praying for a just solution for those seeking a better life in our country. For additional photos, please click here. 

Sr. Mary Dominic Savio Estorge, Associate Chris Cahalan, Sr. Suzanne Brauer and Associate Kevin Cahalan in New Orleans.
Dominican Sisters of Peace Martina Stegman and Rita Birzer at the “Families Belong Together” Rally in Pontiac, MI.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in News

What Makes America Great?

Blog by Sr. Barbara Kane, OP, Justice Promoter

Last week, I attended a Mass for immigrant families and reform of our destructive immigration system.  Ahead of me was a young mother and her little boy.  He was adorable – around 14-15 months, sandy brown hair.  He was very good during the mass and you could see the love pouring out of both mother and son for each other.  Mom wasn’t clingy but every so often she would give him a little hug, caress his cheek, kiss his forehead.  My thoughts immediately went to the children at the border who, separated from their own mothers or fathers, have no one to touch them.  I remembered the horrifying audio of the children crying out, “Mama…. Papa” and my heart broke a bit more.

Tomorrow is the Fourth of July, a holiday that celebrates freedom from tyranny… poverty… religious persecution. A time to celebrate life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  It’s easy for me to say this because I’m white, educated, and employed.  For many others in our country this is not the case.  They are still persecuted, poor, and despised because of their religion.  This isn’t the way most of us want our country to be.  Our uncivil discourse doesn’t feel so great to me right now.

Tax breaks for the rich… bans at the border….separating children from their parents…. open carry gun laws are not going to make our country great again.  Our country is great because individuals can experience the freedom to be who they were created to be….because we care about our environment and do all we can to reduce those practices that pollute it…. because we recognize that all religions have a bit of the truth about the loving, generous God….because we welcome those escaping hunger and violence in their own countries.  We are great when we work for economic and political stability in other countries so that their citizens will not have to leave their families to survive.  We are great when we recognize the needs of our citizens like healthcare, jobs, and excellent education.

No child should be denied the touch of her father, the kiss of his mother. No child should be traumatized by separation.  To be great, we must remember Jesus’ warning, “What you do for the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you do to me.” Our brothers and sisters are black and brown,  Christian and Muslim, native born and immigrant,  rich and poor,  straight and gay.

God our all nations, on this Fourth of July, be with those who live in this United States. Give us the wisdom to know your will and the courage to live it out.  Help each of us to bring love and inclusion to our country. Amen.

Posted in News, Peace & Justice Blog

I Love a Story with a Happy Ending

Blog by Associate Colette Parker

So, let me get this straight: a 12-year-old boy was mowing a lawn and inadvertently crossed the property line, cutting a section of grass in the neighbor’s yard.

The neighbor called 911, asking the police to make him (and his crew – his siblings and cousins, ages nine to 13) stop.

Wow! Is that an emergency call that a 911 operator should be answering?

Anyway, a police officer showed up and — to the officer’s credit – he did not confront the children, but addressed the adult customer who hired the crew and the adult neighbor who called police.

But the 12-year-old (Reginald Fields), who owns a lawn care business called Mr. Reggie’s Lawn Cutting Service in Maple Heights, Ohio, was dismayed because the police were called on him and his crew (who in his eyes were doing nothing wrong).

The woman who hired the crew to mow her lawn was troubled by the situation and created a Facebook Live post about what happened.

The post has apparently gotten thousands of views and shares that have resulted in more business for Mr. Reggie and his crew.

Reggie’s mother told a reporter that it is heartwarming to see her children get so much support for doing something productive.

Since the incident, Reggie’s business has received a number of new job offers and a donation of a new push lawn mower and two leaf and grass blowers. My hat’s off to those who are encouraging Reggie and his crew to continue doing something constructive.

Don’t you just love it?

Doesn’t it inspire you to speak up — like Mr. Reggie’s customer — when you know something isn’t right?

Doesn’t it motivate you to want to encourage someone — like those new customers of Mr. Reggie and the person who donated the lawn equipment — who you see doing something constructive?

Posted in Associate Blog, News