The beginning of any college academic year brings more than a few challenges, but for the University of Texas at Austin, those challenges brought great concern and division. On June 1, 2015, Governor Greg Abbott signed Senate Bill 11, the “campus carry” law, which allows students with gun licenses to carry a concealed handgun on campus. President Gregory L. Femes and faculty at the University spoke against this ill-advised law with the state legislators, but to no avail. Ironically, this bill was signed 50 years to the day of the first mass shooting on a college campus, at the University of Texas. Continue reading →
Peace & Justice Blog
Stay up to date on peace and justice issues, both locally and internationally, and learn how you can take action.
I recently participated in a small group discussion at the Dominican Sisters Conference Convocation focused on the topic of racism. The conversation began with the question “Have you ever felt rejected as a person of color?” The conversation continued with several women giving examples of experiences when they either felt inferior or superior in a situation. It was a frank discussion on how people with different racial identities interact with each other and bring to the situation a socialized or learned attitude or behavior. Continue reading →
Since every era has its own set of crises, preaching is always in season. For the 413 participants in the Dominican Sisters Conference Convocation in Wheeling, IL, everything began and ended with preaching – and preaching the just word provided the challenge. It seemed that St. Paul’s words to Timothy were meant for each of us: “Preach when it is convenient or inconvenient.” In her preaching, Patricia Bruno, OP, asks: What is the grace we need to move forward – as Dominicans, as Christians, as citizens of the world? Continue reading →
[Dominican Sisters of Peace Janice Thome, OP (blogger), and Rose Mary Stein, OP, attended the Nuns on the Bus event in Kansas earlier in September. During an interview with Sr. Janice, she shared the following reflection about her ministry and the people she serves:]
In Garden City, Kansas I serve in the Dominican Sisters Ministry of Presence, which is a direct service ministry with the economic poor. In this town of 30,000 we are a “majority-minority” with people who come from 25 different countries. The children in our school district speak over 37 languages because of the large number of dialects. When I first arrived, we were serving a majority of Spanish-speaking people in our ministry with the poor; now it is a majority of Anglo, English-speaking people because of the economic situations in our country and state. Those most recently struggling economically have been working in the oil industry and have been laid off because of cutbacks. We have refugees coming from Ethiopia, Somalia, Burma and many other countries. They come to western Kansas because of the job market in the dairy industry, beef packing plants, and other related jobs. Continue reading →
Most of us have followed the saga of the Iran Nuclear Treaty, formally called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, with interest and concern. Some members of Congress were determined to stop it. It took a hard fought struggle to get the necessary votes to overcome a veto or a filibuster. This struggle has been and will continue to be a fact of life in our government. It can seem overwhelming and frustrating to ordinary citizens who want to see our government work. Continue reading →