Environmental Justice & Inclusion

For environmental movements to succeed equitably, grassroots activists and community members need to be brought into academic discourse, instead of being treated like “lab rats,” according to Dr. Sylvia Hood Washington.

Listen to the entire interview on WBEZ’s Worldview with Jerome McDonnell.




Interfaith Letter on Standing Rock

The following letter is from Green Faith, an interfaith organization whose mission is to inspire, educate and mobilize people of diverse religious backgrounds for environmental leadership.

To learn more about the resistance of the Standing Rock Sioux Nation to the Dakota Access Pipeline, click here.

Like many of you, I’ve watched the Sioux and their First Nation Water Protectors standing strong at Standing Rock in North Dakota, protesting the development of a fossil fuel pipeline that would threaten their drinking water and desecrate their sacred sites. I have been filled with admiration for their courage and resolve.

These past several days have seen an escalation in the violence directed at them. Native American leaders have called for people of faith to stand with them. Continue reading “Interfaith Letter on Standing Rock”

Restoring Dignity to the Excluded

The following article is a weekly reflection from the Franciscan Action Network on the reading of the 31st Sunday of Ordinary Time.

The encyclical Laudato Si describes many of the crises regarding God’s creation, a creation which is depicted by the author of the book of Wisdom as “loved by God and embracing God’s imperishable spirit.” (Wis. 11:24, 12:1) However, in the encyclical the Pope adds “We are faced …with one complex crisis which is both social and environmental. Strategies for a solution demand an integrated approach to combating poverty, restoring dignity to the excluded, and at the same time protecting nature.”(Laudato Si, 139)

In our Gospel, Saint Luke tells of Jesus “restoring dignity to the excluded.” Continue reading “Restoring Dignity to the Excluded”

Three Tuesdays of Peace

The following intention is offered by the Wheaton Franciscans. How might we build respect, care, and trust when our nation suffers from mutual vilification, anger toward people with differing opinions, and suspicion of the so-called “other”?

As we approach the time of our national elections we wish to invite you in prayer for an election outcome that will lead to a stronger and more peaceful country and world.

We invite you to look at the next three Tuesdays before these elections as days of prayer. On these days we ask you to spend 8 minutes in prayer with the intention of a wholesome election outcome for our country. This may be contemplative prayer, the Prayer of St. Francis or a favorite prayer of your own. May our prayer assist in holding the balance of respect, care and trust for one another in our country.

Learning to Rely on Jesus

Book Review:
33 Days to Morning Glory by Father Michael Gaitley (Marian Press, 2011)

Reviewer: Phyllis Sadowskimorning-glory

This book offers a personal retreat which brings the reader closer to Jesus through Mary. Father Gaitley will take you on a spiritual journey with guides such as St. Louis De Montfort, St. Maximilian Kolbe, St. Teresa of Calcutta and St. John Paul II. Continue reading “Learning to Rely on Jesus”

12 Weeks of Franciscan Peace

Carolyn D. Townes, OFS, the Animator for Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) for the National Fraternity of the Secular Franciscan Order, has provided a set of reflections for us to consider each of the next 12 weeks.

You can download the complete set of reflections here.

Let us always remain mindful of the Gospel call to be peacemakers (Matthew 5:9). As Franciscans, we are called to be “bearers of peace” and always “seek out ways of unity and fraternal harmony through dialogue, trusting in the presence of the divine seed in everyone and in the transforming power of love and pardon.” (OFS Rule #19)

I invite everyone to share there thoughts and comments on these reflections below. How are you a peacemaker in your life? How do these reflections comfort or challenge you to be a peacemaker?

Gratitude to Sylvia Hood Washington and Lauren Washington for bringing this resource to the attention of the fraternity!


The Blessings of the Rosary

October is dedicated to Our Blessed Mother and the Rosary. Our Lady repeatedly requested that all her children be devoted to the frequent recitation of the Rosary, and promised many graces and blessings to those who fulfill this request. What are these graces? Continue reading “The Blessings of the Rosary”