Laudato Si 2015-2020

Wisdom figure - NDF London
​ Sr Catherine Jones smsm, NZ-London, writes:    This beautiful tapestry of the Wisdom Figure, "who delights to be with the children of the earth" (Prov 8:31) welcomes you as enter Notre Dame de France Church, London, a Marist ministry. Wisdom is in our midst inviting us to live in respect and harmony with all of God's creation. Yet Pope Francis reminds us in Laudato Si (LS) that our Mother Earth "cries out to us because of the harm we have inflicted on her by our irresponsible use and abuse of the goods with which God has endowed her" (LS 2) The Pope has invited us to remember the fifth anniversary of Laudato Si, with a week of prayer, conversion and activities, 16-...
Continue reading
  1 Comment
1 Comment

A Faith greater than Fear

A Faith greater than our fear
​ "May your Faith be greater than your Fear" [Heb 13:6]     Fr Tony O'Connor sm writes from San Felipe de Jesus Catholic Church, Brownsville, Texas. Here we were : attending Central American Minors in their centers and in the parish; taking food, clothes, and provisions to the asylum seekers over the border; and to the poor "ranchos" on the other side of the river in cooperation with the valiant people there; getting our kids ready for First Communion and Confirmation, 30 R.C.I A. candidates adults and children;fully attended Sunday masses; baptisms; weddings;15 year old birthdays; Zumba; Yoga; Praise; Adoration; adult education; Bible; food bank;social assistance. Then C...
Continue reading
  7 Comments
7 Comments

Post Covid-19 - what will be 'normal'?

St Peter's Lent Solidarity in Solitude
From politicians, business leaders and the population in general are eagerly waiting and hoping for the day when life can return to normal. Question: Is that the best we can hope for? I would ask you to ponder upon this enforced semi-isolation as an opportunity to reflect upon our lifestyles. Quakers (in their gathering for worship) are comfortable with the sound of silence. It is an attenuated openness to the inspiration of God or the Spirit. The journalist Tom Robinson writes: If God is trying to tell us something, the thinking goes, how can we hear him amid the hymns, psalms, sermons, and recited prayers of a conventional church service. So, for 350 years Quakers having been sitting down,...
Continue reading
  1 Comment
1 Comment

A hunger pandemic

Alan Kurdi
Fr Jim Carty sm, Australia, writes:  "In the summer of 2015, three-year-old Alan Kurdi was found dead on a Turkish beach. His Syrian family had fled their war-torn homeland. The image of that drowned child in the arms of a soldier disturbed us all. "In the fall of 2018, Amal Hussain died of a deadly disease: hunger. Her photograph appeared in The New York Times: undernourished, she lay waiting for death, without even the strength to cry. Amal was in a health centre where the nurses gave her milk every two hours. It was useless. She could not keep it down and also had severe diarrhea. In her war-torn country, Yemen, a hostile coalition had set up a blockade making it extremely diffi...
Continue reading
  1 Comment
1 Comment

Vatican Commission for Covid-19

On 20 March 2020, Pope Francis asked the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development (DPIHD) to create a Commission, in collaboration with other Dicasteries of the Roman Curia, to express the Church's solicitude and care for the whole human family facing the COVID-19 pandemic, including analysis, reflection on the new socio-economic-cultural future, and the proposal of relevant approaches. Accordingly, DPIHD has established a Vatican COVID-19 Commission to take up the Pope's concern through the activities of five Working Groups. The activities of these five working groups, which were presented to the Holy Father on 27 March 2020, will be coordinated by a Directorate reporting directly...
Continue reading
  1 Comment
1 Comment

Easter Triduum at the Border

Tony O'Connor writes from the Mexican Border
Tony O'Connor writes of "Threads of the Easter Triduum at the [Mexican] Border": This past month, everything changed around me and keeps changing as "shut in" has set in on both sides of the border. Things as they were TENT COURTS Here the most notable travesties were the tent courts for the asylum seekers. At 4.30 am they would be lined up on the bridge on the Mexican side. The candidates who had been waiting days, weeks for this moment would be checked for louse, yes louse! Anyone not clean got left behind. Then they were marched over the bridge to the Tent Court, hidden behind a fence by the Gateway Bridge here in Brownsville. No one was permitted to witness the court hearings. Anybody wa...
Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Homeless children & Covid-19

Fr John Guo sm with Staff of BAPAS
Fr John Guo sm is the Acting Director of Balay Pasilungan Incorporated, a Marist project for homeless children in Davao, Philippines.   Following are some excerpts of their Report as they face the pandemic. The work of BaPas is currently being impacted by COVID-19 We are closely monitoring the impact of the pandemic of COVID-19 around the world and our BaPas  Crisis-Response Team is meeting regularly to assess and how to respond collectively to the situation to ensure the safety of the children and staff of BaPas.  Davao City COVID-19 Situation The whole country is in lock-down. Davao City has a total population of 1,825,450 is in lock-down since March 16. The l...
Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Covid-19 Francis prays for the world

Pope Francis' Prayer for the World
Pope Francis prayed for the world last Friday evening here in Rome.    Here are some excerpts of his meditation:  "When evening had come" (Mk 4:35). The Gospel passage we have just heard begins like this. For weeks now it has been evening. Thick darkness has gathered over our squares, our streets and our cities; it has taken over our lives, filling everything with a deafening silence and a distressing void, that stops everything as it passes by; we feel it in the air, we notice in people's gestures, their glances give them away. We find ourselves afraid and lost. Like the disciples in the Gospel we were caught off guard by an unexpected, turbulent storm. We have real...
Continue reading
  2 Comments
2 Comments

Corona virus in a Time of Climate Crisis

Maori life-force stones
Fr Peter Healy sm, NZ, reflects on the new corona virus in a time of crisis:    At our last Māori mass here in Ōtaki, Aotearoa New Zealand we named and blessed three kōhatu mauri or life-force stones.This is a traditional Māori practice for helping people focus and ground their intentions. Our three kōhatu mauri called Te Whenua, Ngā Wai and Te Tuarangi, represented our land, our waters and our universe and heavens.The kōhatu when blessed were given the task of embodying for our community a collection of concerns and hopes.  The kōhatu Whenua was tasked with holding the corona virus within the context of the larger issues facing our earth community.We named inequality of incom...
Continue reading
  2 Comments
2 Comments

Corona virus - a Faith response

At this time when the whole world is preoccupied with the Corona Virus Covid-19, how are we, as People of Faith, called to think, pray, and act?  God's name, and nature, is revealed to us as "I am with you". This is the name of the God who began the unfolding of Creation some 13.8 billion years ago; who formed our planet some 4 billion years ago, brought about the human emergence some 200,000 years ago, revealed this name to Moses some 3,500 years ago, to Isaiah some 2,700 years ago, and married himself to us and his creation some 2000 years ago in the person in Jesus - the eternal, generative Word, become flesh.Our God is with us in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health.God ...
Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Australia down under & under attack

Koala in the Aussie fires 2019-20
Fr Jim Carty sm, Australia, writes this report on the 2019-2020 extremes of fire and flood:   Australia rarely makes the international News cycle - we are "down under" and out of sight. Sadly, when we do hit the headlines it is often for wrong or horrible reasons. At the moment we are big news and sadly here are the reasons why: 1. Australia is perhaps more than any other nation the "canary in the coal mine" when it comes to the reality of climate change world wide - and what an ironic analogy that is, because of our continued emissions from coal-powered power plants and the fact that Australia is one of the leading coal exporting nations in the world. FIRE 2. Bush-fires ...
Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

A letter from Thailand

Br Paul fms, teachers and students at 'Hope
​ Br Paul Murphy fms, Australia, recently sent this letter from his mission in Thailand:    A grey ribbon of narrow road, hedged by brush and swamp, snakes ahead running from 'somewhere to nowhere' until it bursts upon the shore of the Gulf of Thailand where finger wharves encompassed by tiny trawlers bob and ebb on a grey green sea. I had just come two hours south east from Bangkok to 'Hope's' most beautiful school at Wat (temple) Sirimonkon on the edge of the region of Samut Sakhon.  Wat Siri is a beautiful, loving school surprisingly part funded by the Thai government and nestling on the side of two active temples, both Buddhist - one Thai, the other Bur...
Continue reading
  2 Comments
2 Comments

Beloved Amazon - Pope Francis

Pope Francis - beginning - Amazon Synod
​ A few days ago, Pope Francis released his post-synodal exhortation Querida Amazonia - Beloved Amazon. This week's blog is a 'taste' of a few gems of the four Dreams Francis offers us: a Social Dream; a Cultural Dream; an Ecological Dream; and an Ecclesial Dream. His concluding prayer is to Mary, mother of all creatures. The full text can be read   here    CHAPTER ONE - A SOCIAL DREAM "a true ecological approach always becomes a social approach; it must integrate questions of justice in debates on the environment, so as to hear both the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor". We do not need an environmentalism "that is concerned for the biome but ignores the Amazonian...
Continue reading
  1 Comment
1 Comment

World Inter-faith Harmony Week

Marists in Inter-faith Dialogue 2019
World Inter-faith harmony week, 2020, has just been celebrated 01-07 February. Fr. Hermes (Larry) Sabud, SM, Chair of the Marist Inter-religious Dialogue Commission prepared this paper for the occasion. 1. What is World Interfaith Harmony Week (WIHW)? The United Nations (UN) on October 20, 2010, recognizing the need of dialogue among different faiths and religions and their contribution for peace in the world, has proclaimed the first week of February of every year the "World Interfaith Harmony Week" between all religions, faiths and beliefs. The UN encourages "all States to support, on a voluntary basis, the spread of the interfaith harmony and goodwill. The celebration based on the love of...
Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Water: essential, fundamental

Fr Luigi Savoldelli's Well - Cameroon
Water: essential, fundamental, universal human right. With this title Fr Luigi Savoldelli sm, Italian Marist in Cameroon says "I wanted to start this, my first article, on the experience that I am living with my brother Africans and the people of Cameroon, resuming a passage of the encyclical "Laudato Si" by Pope Francis. In the context of this encyclical, the agricultural project that we are sharing is part of the Marist community of Cameroon and a group of local poor families. Among the elements of the project an important aspect is that of water, a vital and essential element for human life; In order to respond to the need to be able to guarantee to the local community, which will gather ...
Continue reading
  2 Comments
2 Comments

Unusual Kindness

The Holy Family is still among us
The theme this year, 2020, for the week of Prayer for Christian Unity [18-25​ January], has been "Unusual Kindness" - words of St Paul, when given this experience during his own shipwreck off Malta. We share in this blog, in a timely way, stories from Tony O'Connor sm, working with People on the Mexican-USA border, who so much need those experiences of being shown an "Unusual Kindness". ​ "MILD MODERN DAY TORTURE"? Juan from Salvador, 16 going on 17, a tall stocky lad, well-spoken and decent hearted , arrived two weeks ago , crossed the river and was picked up by the border patrol a couple of hours from here. Is now in a center for migrant minors. They took him first as they do to all, ...
Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Laudato Si - Marist Family 2020

Cristina smsm, Anne sm, Ben sm, Ángel fms
This Year, 2020, is the 5th Anniversary of 'Laudato Si' and the 50th Anniversary of 'Earth Day'. On 11th January members of our Marist General Councils - Cristina Giustozzi smsm,  Anne McCabe sm, Ben McKenna sm, and  Ángel García fms,  met together to reflect on: 1. What are our General Chapters calling us to do? 2. What is happening in our Branch of the Society?  3. What Resources are we using?  and 4. How can we support each other and work together?     What are our General Chapters Calling us to do?Each member shared on their work and commitment to 'Laudato Si' within their branch of the Society...
Continue reading
  5 Comments
5 Comments

Light that darkness cannot overpower

Light - Nativity Petrus van Schendel
Jim Carty sm,  leader of our jpic Australian group, has written the following Christmas letter: Chiaroscuro is an Italian term applied to those paintings where the central figure or feature is bathed or suffused in bright light (chiaro) surround by dark (oscuro) indistinct sometimes threatening, foreboding figures or features, suggesting danger, uncertainty- the nativity story as described in the Gospel is the focus of thousands of artists using this technique. Two such paintings by the same artist capture well this contrast: The calm before the approaching storm and all its concomitant fears. The nativity with its promise fulfilled, offering the light of hope and possible peace in a fr...
Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

There is always Hope

Centro Hispano Marista Graduates 2019
Dr. Leticia Valencia, program director of Centro Hispano Marista​  writes: Centro Hispano Marista is a ministry that provides affordable, bilingual, GED preparation classes for adults in Atlanta. Each Tuesday evening between 350 and 400 students arrive for classes taught by wonderful volunteers. Since its inception, the Centro has helped 290 graduates achieve their GED, or equivalent of a high school diploma, which has opened them the doors to higher-paying jobs, college, and job promotions. We have just celebrated our 2019 graduation on December 10th - see the cover photo! Although our program shrunk and had difficulties in the past, we keep seeing the potential in adult...
Continue reading
  0 Comments
0 Comments

Mary-way to peace among cultures

Mary-dialogue-fraternity-culture
​Pope Francis, on the 4th December gave an address to the  participants in the XXIV Public Session of the seven Pontifical Academies.  His words are appropriate for us as Marists in this time of Advent: Mary, a teacher of humanity The Pope reflected on  "Mary - way to peace among cultures" and recalled briefly on how different popes expressed veneration for Our Lady. He recalled the dramatic experience of the two world wars that led Pope Pius XII to uphold Mary as a beacon of peace for a frightened humanity. The Second Vatican Council, he continued, pointed to her as a "teacher of humanity" and a model for the Church in its mission to serve the "deepest asp...
Continue reading
  1 Comment
1 Comment

By accepting you will be accessing a service provided by a third-party external to https://jpicblog.maristsm.org/