Celebrate Catholic Sisters Week

Every Sister should join in this celebration of religious life! Here are some great ways to you can take part:

For Sisters:

Sister Shout-Outs
Invite associates and oblates, donors, benefactors, friends and family, parishioners, students or coworkers, to complete the phrase “Sisters are …”, written boldly on a sheet of paper. Photograph the person holding the paper ( cell phone pictures are fine) and send to srpeace@oppeace.org. The Communications team will use the photos on our social media sites.

Sister Storytelling Panel
Invite sisters to be on a panel and share their faith. Possible topics sisters could address:
• All Christians are called to follow Jesus but as a woman religious, I am called to…
• What I find most rewarding about religious life is…
• What I find most challenging about religious life is…
• Religious life is needed today because…

Photo Displays and Slideshows
Create a photo display in your local parish, school or ministry bulletin board or table highlighting sisters and their ministries. Additionally, create photo slideshows or videos for online sharing and send to srpeace@oppeace.org.

Ministry Recognition
Ask a Sister in a ministry other than your own to share her work at your parish.

Founding Sisters Stories
Interview older Sisters about the early days of their community and send to srpeace@oppeace.org. The Communications team can use these recordings to create podcasts and videos.

For Associates:

Bible Study, Prayer Service or Lunch/Dinner Discussion
Organize a special bible study or prayer service during Catholic Sisters Week or plan a lunch/dinner and discussion on campus, in the parish hall, your home or another gathering space.

Tour the Motherhouse
Ask if your group or class can tour the motherhouse nearest you, and ask a sister to highlight
important aspects of the community’s life, history and work. Be sure to photo-document the tour for
online sharing #catholicsistersweek.

Guest Speakers
Invite a sister who is comfortable with public speaking to address your class, campus or parish group. Be
sure to give her a topic that she is comfortable addressing and that will resonate with the audience.

Podcasts or Web Feature Stories
Interview sisters on topics of interest to your web and social media audience. Post a podcast or story each day during Catholic Sisters Week. For podcasts be sure to ask sisters who are articulate and comfortable with technology. Use #catholicsistersweek when posting.

Posted in God Calling?

What Are You Hiding?

“Is a lamp brought in to be placed under a bushel basket or under a bed, and not to be placed on a lampstand?”

Blog by Sr. Theresa Fox, OP

We often think of the lamp hidden under the bed as a talent that we have never developed. It could be something else. Maybe it is something that we stowed away for a future time and then promptly forgot about. Or maybe it is something that a person is trying to hide and doesn’t want to deal with.

Usually, the something a person has hidden and doesn’t want to deal with is an issue that periodically gnaws at him/her. It could be a fault that the person is trying to ignore or an issue with another person. The truth is it won’t go away if it is ignored. Instead, it will continue to fester in the back of our mind until it is brought into the light. There it can be faced, dealt with, and put to rest.

Pulling that issue out and facing it head-on isn’t always easy. In fact, sometimes it can be very hard. Yet, dealing with difficult personal issues can ease that gnawing feeling. It may also develop into a talent that a person didn’t think she/he had. It may help the person accept themselves with all their foibles. Or in facing the issue with another person, it may develop into a relationship that has meaning.

All sorts of good may come from pulling out that something hidden under the bed and bringing it to light. Even if we choose not to deal with that issue now. It will probably haunt us later. After all, today’s gospel also says:

“For there is nothing hidden except to be made visible;
nothing is secret except to come to light.”

Posted in Weekly Word

How is God calling you to make this world a More Loving and Peaceful world?

Blog by Sr. Beata Tiboldi

“What do we tell these children about how to stay out of harm’s way when you can be at your own house, minding your own business, surrounded by your entire family, and they still put some murder on you that you ain’t do and send you to death row?” (a quote from Just Mercy movie) A teacher for nine years, behavior management was part of my ministry. Thus, when I heard this statement from the movie “Just Mercy,” I was speechless.

Based on a true story, “Just Mercy” addresses the racial bias and the inequality of our criminal justice system. It also raises awareness of the truth about incarcerated women and children, the concern for children being sent to life-imprisonment, and military veterans who don’t receive the care they need after their deployment. The movie follows the life of Mr. Walter McMillan and the work of Bryan Stevenson.

Walter McMillan was an innocent black man who was wrongly convicted of the murder of a white woman. Walter was sentenced to death because of racial bias for a crime he did not commit, which he understood as: “You’re guilty from the moment you’re born.” (Walter McMillan in Just Mercy)

Bryan Stevenson, a young civil rights defense attorney, decided to work for people who were sentenced to death row. He raised the awareness that “constantly being suspected, accused, watched, doubted, distrusted, presumed guilty, and even feared is a burden born by people of color that can’t be understood or confronted without a deeper conversation about our history of racial injustice.” So, Bryan set out to Alabama. His mother tried to protect him by saying: “Look, what you’re doing is going to make a lot of people upset.” But Bryan stayed committed to his plan: “But you always taught me to fight for the people who need the help most. (…) My job is not to make people happy. It’s to achieve justice for my client.”

Bryan’s quest is a movement, not just a book or movie. He continues to fight for justice and to help people recognize the dignity of each person. “We are all more than the worst thing we’ve ever done,” he said. Read more about his ministry at Equal Justice Initiative, click on Our Work section.

Dominican Sister of Peace Kathy Broussard commented similarly in an interview when she was asked about her ministry with the inmates: “It’s not my job to ask people to excuse those who have committed capital crimes. It is my job to humanize my client to a jury. Many of my clients have grown up in terrible environments. They may be mentally or intellectually handicapped. One person is on death row for a crime that he did not even commit. More and more death row inmates are being exonerated.” Sr. Kathy continues working with inmates, families, parole officers and more to mitigate the death penalty one life at a time. To read more about Sr. Kathy’s ministry, click here.

There are other Sisters who serve the convicted. One way Sr. Rose Bowen, OP, lives out her call is by serving in prison retreat and visitation ministry. Another way is how Sr. Germaine Conroy, OP, continues to be a member of the Circles for Restorative Justice, a program which offers the opportunity for youth who have been arrested to come before a group to present and complete a plan, which will enable them to have their criminal record cleared. Another way Sisters and Associates are involved is to host a dialogue or prayer service bi-monthly through the “Building Racial Harmony series.” The goal of the ministry is to provide a safe space to dialogue about issues of race and racial justice and to establish the Motherhouse as a center of prayer around the issue of racial justice. The hope is that those who participate will be inspired, motivated, and equipped to work toward racial justice. How is God calling you to make this world a more peaceful and just place?


To see more about how the Dominican Sisters of Peace make the world a more peaceful place, check out our video premiere on Facebook, Wednesday, February 5, at 6 pm EST.

Posted in God Calling?

A Spotlight on Truth

Blog by Sr. Roberta Miller

Simon and Ana tell us that Jesus is a ‘light to show truth.” In Psalm 27 we pray, “The Lord is my light and my salvation.” Are we Dominicans really committed to truth— the truth grounded in reality and experience? Reality is overwhelming these days, from devastating droughts and fires, hurricanes and earthquakes; the violence of inequities seen in state and civil oppression; refugees, trafficking and intolerances.

Another truth is looming for those of us in the United States as well –  the loss of the concept of the ‘common good’ for all and, as a result, loss of clean water, air and healthy foods.

Do you like fish—perhaps fileted catfish or red snapper? Are you aware that the fish you eat as well as the bottled water you drink for your health from may contain minuscule particles of plastic?

Fumes from diesel trucks in transport may have contaminated your ‘fresh’ beans or broccoli or bananas. Our bees (honey and the noxious ones) are dying because of pesticides (neonicotinoids); without their existence, our farms lose the fertilization of flowers which become seeds and fruits. Our bountiful natural world of biodiversity is being lost to chemical pollution as found in Roundup (glyphosates) or pesticides (chlorpyrifos) which in turn impact negatively our human health—nervous system, breathing, brain development.

Back in 2016 [at the beginning of the Trump presidency], the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility stated:

Environmental regulations are designed to shift the cost of pollution away from individuals, insurance companies and businesses that are affected by climate change, and onto the companies responsible for creating the pollution.

The current administration has taken a contrary stance through its focus on cost/benefit analysis for business and eliminated so far 58 regulations and moving to reverse 37 others. Rules for companies to report and control toxic air emissions such as methane or benzene or remove the requirement for oil rig companies to have the money to remove the unproductive rig are considered burdensome and costly. If you live in Louisiana or Alabama in the vicinity of gas and oil refineries, you now breathe in more of these cancer carcinogens. The oil rigs in the Gulf being resold by Exxon Mobil or Chevron to independent oil drillers are like used cars whose new operators do not have finances to refurbish and maintain their rigs needed for the safety of rig-platform workers or to prevent more Deepwater Horizon-type explosions with its lasting pollution of the Gulf resources. Moreover, the rigs can now be abandoned to rust and leak into the fishing waters of the Gulf. As in the coal mining areas of the Appalachians, when the big seams of coal were mined, mountain top removal came in to get to the remnants. The land no longer supported the residents.

There are many other examples of rules abolished to the detriment of our health and safety:

  • Coal power plants can now resume dumping their coal ash waste into unlined ponds or landfill which leak out into the groundwater their arsenic, mercury, lead, and chromium.
  • Continued use of toxic pesticides such as chlorpyrifos for dusting food/fruit crops poisons area families, workers, and consumers.
  • Weakened protections for wetlands and watershed areas, which are proven to reduce chemical run-off into lakes and rivers and to help prevent damaging floods.
  • Deregulation of the levels of factory or chemical company releases of hazardous air toxins like benzene, dioxin, and lead cause health problems such as cancer and birth defects.
  • Development projects are now fast-tracked to reduce the study of environmental consequences, so basic facts of water sources and flow, wind strength and directions, ground seepage are ignored. Cultural factors are also discounted.
  • This administration ignores climate change caused by and exacerbated by industrial emissions, forest and land decimation which upset the natural biodiversity of Earth and the seasonality of rain and wind and sun.

These changes challenge all life to adapt to rapid change – a challenge that God’s creation, as wonderful as it is, just cannot meet.

The lights of truth as known through our study, contemplation, prayer must shine through in our communal and individual actions. Recovery of the concept of ‘the common good’ is vital to our well-being on Earth in health, safety, and peace.

Posted in News, Peace & Justice Blog

January 27, 2020 Justice Updates

  • The Interfaith Immigration Coalition (IIC), which includes the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, has called for a national day of prayer and action on behalf of migrants on Wednesday, January 29, 2020. A year ago, on January 29, 2019, the first migrants were sent back to Mexico under the Trump administration’s Migrant Protection Protocols, also known as Remain in Mexico.

Please consider taking part in this day in any way you can and encourage others to do so. Here are links to resources from the IIC:

  • Stories of migrants: click here
  • Faith4Asylum website: click here
  • Toolkit: click here

The Prayer Service and some resource materials are also attached.

  • Pope Francis marked the 75 Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau during his Sunday address. He advised his audience that remembering this tragedy is a duty, and called for all to say “Never again.” Click here for more. 
Posted in News, Peace & Justice Weekly Updates