News

For further information on any of the news items listed here, please contact Alice Black, PhD, OPA, Director of Communications & Mission Advancement, at 614-416-1020.


 

Dominican Month of Peace

“Just before he finished his term a few months ago, our beloved Master, Bruno Cadoré, announced that the focus of our annual Dominican Month for Peace for 2019 would be on India. This is a unique moment of solidarity of the whole Dominican Family during Advent, praying that the Prince of Peace will bless all of our efforts.” 

Father Gerard Timoner, OP, Master of the Order

Blog by Sr. Barbara Kane, OP, Justice Promoter

On December 1st, we began the Dominican Month of Peace.  It was introduced in 2017 to promote global Dominican solidarity with our brothers and sisters who are trying to bring hope in situations of violence, poverty, and war. It runs throughout Advent until January 1. The focus this year is India and highlights the human rights of children, women and indigenous people. It’s an opportunity to educate the Dominican family about the ‘family’ in other parts of the world and how they are ministering.

What does our family look like? There are 159 friars, 452 sisters in seven congregations, five nuns, 143 lay Dominicans in six chapters and 109 Dominican youth.  You can see where they minister by checking out this map of India (below) or clicking this link to a list of the individual congregations.

Since the 1990’s the Dominican Family in India (DFI) has been working among the marginalized especially with children, women and indigenous rural communities. Through many and diverse awareness and sensitization programs in families, schools, and communities, the DFI is trying to create safe environments and neighborhoods where children can be protected from exploitation and their rights safeguarded. They work with women to challenge gender violence and exploitation and to insist on gender equality and more political participation.  They also work with indigenous communities to empower and strengthen their political participation and to be accepted as integral and equal members of society.

Each week during the Dominican Month of Peace, there will be information on India, its history, its people and life in India today as well as the work supported by the Dominican Family in India. There will also be several blogs on trafficking in India. Please take time each day to pray for the Dominican Family in India and for the people with whom they minister.

Dominican Family in India
Posted in News, Peace & Justice Blog

Be Kind to Others

Blog by Associate Colette Parker

We should always be kind to others because we never know what people are going through.

Those words were uttered by one of my nephews during a recent conversation.

I responded with a resounding “Amen!” — affirming his truth — because I believe everyone can appreciate acts of kindness.

As I reflected on the conversation, I began to realize just how important his observation is, especially during the holiday season.

While the holiday season is considered a time of joy, laughter, love, and giving; it can be an exceptionally lonely and challenging time for many. In fact, depression and mental health issues often increase during the holiday season.

As you go through your daily life this holiday season (and throughout the year), remember that many people are experiencing difficulties – some are struggling financially, some are alone or lonely, some are consumed by the grief of losing loved ones. Remember that the season can be a harsh reminder of their lack of happiness, joy, laughter, love, and acceptance.

So, if you choose to do one thing this holiday season, I encourage you to be kind to others because you never know what a person is going through.

Posted in Associate Blog, News

With a Grateful Heart

Sr. Pat Thomas, OP
Blog by Sr. Pat Thomas, OP

It is hard to say much that is new about giving thanks, and now the time is upon us when that is pretty much all we are hearing about. So, consider all you have; consider your families and friends; consider it all and…….

GIVE THANKS!

FOR ALL THAT HAS BEEN AND FOR ALL THAT IS TO COME.

AMEN!

 

Posted in News, Wednesday's Word

Gratitude

Blog by Sr. Barbara Kane, OP

“If the only prayer you ever say is Thank You, it’s enough.”  (Meister Eckhart)

This week we celebrate Thanksgiving. There are many things in my life for which I am grateful. Four of my favorites are the Justice Committees that I work with to do our Justice work.  Our Peace and Nonviolence Committee includes Alicia Alvarado, Mary Beth Auletto, Chris Cahalan, Kevin Cahalan, Germaine Conroy, June Fitzgerald, Shawn Fitzpatrick, Michelle Grey, Anne Kilbride, Frank Martens, Judy Morris, and Jerry Stein. The committee developed the corporate stance on Abolition of the Death Penalty, coordinated Blessed are the Peacemakers Webinar, and have worked on Gun Safety Legislation in addition to their individual peace building activities. Go CLARA!

Working to educate us about our environment is our Eco Justice Committee.  The members are Jane Belanger, Marguerite Chandler, Judy Hardy, Jo Hendricks, Karen Martens, Roberta Miller, Terry Wasinger, Mary Kay Woods. The committee has worked tirelessly to help us understand the importance of protecting our Mother Earth, our primary revelation of a generous God.  They have written blogs to get us ready for Earth Day and helped us to participate in the Climate Strike. We are working on ways to calculate our carbon footprint and reduce it.

Our Immigration Committee has written letters, made calls, accompanied immigrants, and made public comments to protect our fragile asylum seekers and refugees.  They include Alicia Alvarado, Esther Calderon, Gemma Doll, Conni Dubick, Judi Engel, Dora Harper, Martha Maloney, Roberta Miller, Rachel Sena, Carol Ann Spencer, Thoma Swanson, Janice Thome, Jim Tinnin, Roserita Weber, Rene Weeks, and Tom Winters.  The committee developed a prayer card using artwork by Sr. Thoma in addition to helping with the Sock and Underwear Drive for asylum seekers in El Paso.

Finally, our Anti Human Trafficking Committee members have been active in work around the country working with trafficked women and educating hotel/motels about how to spot them.  They have written blogs to help us understand what trafficking is and how it affects us especially labor trafficking.  The Dominican Month of Peace will focus on trafficking in India.  Our Trafficking Committee includes Mary Ann Alexander, Nadine Buchanan, Joel Campbell, Barbara Catalano, Carol Davis, Ellen Dunn, and Carol Gaeke.

These are just the highlights of the committee work. They provide so much awareness and guidance for my work. I am also grateful for my leadership liaison, Sr. Gemma Doll, who leads by example and her own involvement in justice work.  It truly takes a village to do justice. Thank you for all your actions and prayers.

 

Posted in News, Peace & Justice Blog

Justice Updates – November 26, 2019

Should we talk about politics at our Thanksgiving dinner?  Fr. Richard Rohr writes, “ Politics is one of the most difficult and complex issues on which to engage in polite conversation… But you know what? There is no such thing as being non-political. Everything we say or do either affirms or critiques the status quo. To say nothing is to say something: The status quo—even if it is massively unjust and deceitful—is apparently okay. From a contemplative stance we will know what action is ours to do, which words we are called to say, and how our spirituality must be fully embodied in our political choices.” Read more in his blog from November 17, 2019 titled Affirm or Critique.

Have you wondered what influence, if any, you can have in the church, government, or other institution? Dominican Fr. Dominic DeLay’s new short film, First Confession, is about how 7-year-old Sofia tells the bishop she needs to help him fix the church. Watch the 8-minute film here.

The U.S. has the highest child incarceration rate in the world, according to an expert who authored a new U.N. study on the treatment of children.  The expert also says the administration’s family separation policy is “absolutely prohibited” by the Convention on the Rights of the Child. The author, Manfred Novak, writes “there are still quite a number of children that are separated from their parents – and neither the children know where the parents are, nor the parents know where the children are.” For more information, click here.

Call your representative and urge him/her to vote for H.R. 2156, the RECLAIM Act. This act will make updates to the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 and will release more than $1 billion already collected for abandoned coal mine site cleanup. The funds can be used to restore polluted streams, address hazardous erosion, land sinks, underground mine fires, and coal ash piles that are endangering residents’ health.  RECLAIM will also put people to work in some of the areas adversely affected by abandoned coal mines – Appalachia and other regions of the country dealing with the effects of this environmental injustice.

Good News! A federal judge blocked the Justice Department’s Plan to resume federal executions. Read more.

According to Human Rights Watch, the lives of children around the world have improved but there is a long way to go. Child labor rates have dropped by a third, while school enrollment has increased by more than 110 million.  Read about it here.

White supremacy hurts all white people. Read how from Greg Elliot of the American Friends Service Committee about how “our own liberation as white people, our own humanity, is inextricably linked to racial justice” in Ten Ways White Supremacy Wounds White People.

US taxpayers spent almost $1 billion incarcerating innocent black people. Couldn’t this money be used for better purposes?   Read here.

The recent meeting of the U.S.C.C.B. showed the division present in the Catholic community today about the justice issues in today’s society including abortion, immigration, and climate change. Sadly, one bishop described climate change important but not urgent.  Read more here.

 

 

Posted in News, Peace & Justice Weekly Updates