Laudato Si’ Quote
74. The experience of the Babylonian captivity provoked a spiritual crisis which led to deeper faith in God. Now his creative omnipotence was given pride of place in order to exhort the people to regain their hope in the midst of their wretched predicament. Centuries later, in another age of trial and persecution, when the Roman Empire was seeking to impose absolute dominion, the faithful would once again find consolation and hope in a growing trust in the all-powerful God: “Great and wonderful are your deeds, O Lord God the Almighty! Just and true are your ways!” (Rev 15:3). The God who created the universe out of nothing can also intervene in this world and overcome every form of evil. Injustice is not invincible.
Reflection: “The God who created the universe out of nothing can also intervene in this world and overcome every form of evil. Injustice is not invincible.” Thirteen mass shootings nationwide in the past week; nineteen children and two teachers murdered in their elementary school classroom; at least fifty men, women, and children murdered during Mass in Nigeria – and yet we are called to believe that “injustice is not invincible.” What does this mean to you right now? How do you “regain your hope in the midst of (our) wretched predicament? How do you find consolation and hope in trust in an all-powerful God?
Action: Carry out one action of hope this week by standing up against gun violence. Write your congressional representatives through Voter Voice or learn more about gun violence in the United Statesor read about what investors for justice are doing against gun violence. Share what you learn or do with someone else.
Prayer for Ukraine and for Peace
JPIC and SSND Investments
The SSND Cooperative Investment Board purchased stock in Strum Ruger, a gun manufacturer, so that SSND, along with other faith-based investment groups would leverage its stock influence to bring about change in the gun industry. The shareholders voted to engage an independent group to study the impact of Stum Ruger gun products on Human Rights. SSND voted on this resolution and because a majority of shareholders joined them, Strum Ruger will have to undergo this study, a strong step in the right direction. Read more here
Learn more about the Anti-Racist Teaching and Learning Collective, an anti-racism community of “youth organizers, students, teachers, and teacher educators committed to advancing anti-racist pedagogy, curriculum and practice within K-12 public schools in Connecticut.” Lots of great resources for teachers and advocates available on their website.
In “Breaking the Silence,” the two-part workshop sponsored by the Dismantling Racism committee with Sr. Patty Chapelle and Sr. Ann Louise Nadeau, the definition given for racism was the following: “Racism is personal racial prejudice AND the misuse of power by systems and institutions.” It is not only a personal decision to be anti-racist but a decision for personal transformation and the transformation of systems, structures, and institutions within which we exercise power. This includes the church as a whole and all the structures within the church. Reflect on those with whom you live and work now; what structures are in place to include all at the table, not only with a seat but with a voice and a meal?
All change begins with one small step. Commit yourself to read the Laudato Si’ reflection each week. One paragraph at a time you can stop and reflect on what we are all called to as a Laudato Si’ congregation!
The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children has a national CyberTipline where parents, family members, teachers, and professionals can report online sexual exploitation. Read more about what online sexploitation is here. If you’re a victim of child sexual exploitation on the internet or are aware of Child Sexual Abuse Materials (CSAM), sex trafficking, or other crimes against children online, please make a report at www.CyberTipline.org or call NCMEC at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).
Justice for Immigrants
Read this excellent article on the “Root Causes of Migration” from the St. Columban Mission for Justice, Peace, and Ecology. Take the time to watch this video (embedded in the article as well) that looks at environmental degradation and migration patterns. Share this information with someone who might not otherwise think about this.
How Asylum Seekers Cross the Border, a New York Times photo essay from the southern US border, is a powerful narrative of the struggle and danger encountered by those seeking safety. Read it with others and discuss it. What does justice demand of us?
Partnership with Haiti
If you have ever wondered why it seems Haiti cannot get on her feet, or wondered why the Dominican Republic (which shares the island) seems more successful as a country, you must read this long and powerful research report in the New York Times, “The Root of Haiti’s Misery: Reparations to Enslavers.” It has already caused Citibank and others to investigate their own cooperation in this oppression. Read about the involvement of Wall Street in the tangled history of US military presence in Haiti. Talk with someone else about what you learned.
And consider the role of language in the telling of history. The article above was the first time a full-length article was published in the NYT in English, French, and Haitian Creole. Read more here.