Read All About It!

We invite you to read and reflect on these recent publications by our Sisters and staff, engaging in the call to “educate, advocate, and act, in collaboration with others, for the dignity of life and the care of all creation.”

Help Convert Dreams into Reality By Sister Pat Ferrick

Dear Editor: In 2012, President Obama announced that certain undocumented immigrants who came to the US as children (Dreamers) would receive temporary permission to remain and work or study in the U.S. but they not entitled to apply for citizenship nor for legal permanent resident status. This program is known as the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). It affects some 700,000 young people, many of whom know no other home than the U.S. (Click the link to read more from the Brooklyn Tablet.)

World Refugee Day is June 20. Just imagine … By Sister Mary Leonora Tucker

Imagination is a wonderful gift that, as children, we use fairly often. Then, as we grow up, many of us put that gift aside. However, on June 20 of this year, every person around the globe is receiving an invitation from the United Nations to rectify that neglect by responding to the call of the 2020 World Refugee Day, a call which is — in part — for us to imagine the reality that is faced by every refugee. (Click the link to read more from NCR’s Global Sisters Report.)

We are called to embody the Spirit of Pentecost By Kathleen Bonnette, Th.D., Assistant Director JPIC

In Greek, the word for Holy Spirit is derived from the word pneuma, which is also the word for breath. At the first Christian Pentecost, the Spirit was revealed in fire and expressed in unprecedented dialogue between diverse ethnic groups. This year, since the church celebrated Pentecost in the midst of a pandemic and widespread protests, these spiritual realities bear new physical meaning, and we are called to embody the Spirit of Pentecost going forward. (Click the link to read more from NCR’s Global Sisters Report.)

Refugees and Human Trafficking in the Context of a Pandemic By Kathleen Bonnette, Th.D., Assistant Director JPIC

Globally, there are more than 70 million displaced people who have been forced to flee their homes due to conflict and persecution. A refugee is an officially recognized and vetted displaced person, who cannot return home and has some legal right to remain in a foreign country. There are nearly 26 million refugees worldwide—eighty-five percent of whom are hosted by developing countries, living in overcrowded and unsanitary camps or urban areas, with limited access to the job market, education, healthcare, and housing. (Click the link to read more from U.S. Catholic Sisters Against Human Trafficking. 

What can St. Augustine teach us about living through a pandemic? By Kathleen Bonnette, Th.D., Assistant Director JPIC

In the last years of St. Augustine’s life, in the early fifth century, he watched as Germanic Vandals marched across northern Africa, pillaging and occupying cities along the way until finally besieging his own city of Hippo. Today, as we watch Covid-19 make its way across the globe, ravaging nations and instilling fear, we can learn much from his insights. Though Augustine might seem an unlikely source of hope (given his reputation for pessimism), his spirituality can offer inspiration and guidance at this time. (Click the link to read more from America.)

The United States has criminalized asylum. Covid-19 gives us a reason to reconsider. By Kathleen Bonnette, Th.D., Assistant Director JPIC

If Covid-19 makes anything clear, it is that all of creation is connected. This pandemic is revealing the extent of our physical dependency on one another and our environment. Of course, this connection has been affirmed theologically throughout the Catholic tradition. In St. Augustine’s words, human beings are “linked together by a common fellowship based on a common nature,” and Pope Francis drives the point home in the encyclical “Laudato Si’,” emphasizing that “everything is connected.” In global efforts to maintain social distance, we are seeing, paradoxically, an incredible moment of solidarity—of recognizing our connections and acting for the sake of the common good. (Click the link to read more America.)

Partnership as a Model for Mission: Lessons on Solidarity from Augustine and the School Sisters of Notre Dame By Kathleen Bonnette, Th.D., Assistant Director JPIC
Abstract: This paper highlights the partnership approach to mission adopted by the Atlantic-Midwest Province of the School Sisters of Notre Dame (AMSSND), which is working to empower the people of Haiti through collaboration with Beyond Borders, an established NGO in the region. I explore this approach in light of the spirituality of St. Augustine that grounds the charism of unity of the School Sisters of Notre Dame (SSND). Examining the connections between Augustine and the mission and ministry of the SSND community, through reflecting on the ways partnership has been an effective means of engaging the SSND mission of facilitating unity, or “oneness,” illuminates helpful ways to conceive of solidarity. (Click the link to read more from Praxis: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Faith and Justice.)

Stay tuned for more!