Monday, June 30, 2014

Day 10: Fortnight for Freedom

Click here for today's Fortnight for Freedom reflection.  Here's an excerpt:  "Within our contemporary world, where is religious equality denied or religious discrimination tolerated? Are there instances where one religion violates the rights of other religions?"

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Day 9: Fortnight for Freedom

Click here for today's Fortnight for Freedom reflection.  Here's an excerpt: "How do governments protect and promote the religious life of their citizens? Do governments take this into consideration today?  In the U.S., how does the government foster religious life while respecting the principle of separation of church and state?"

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Day 8: Fortnight for Freedom

Click here for today's Fortnight for Freedom Reflection.  Here's an excerpt:  "Since the family is a society in its own original right, it has the right freely to live its own domestic religious life under the guidance of parents.  Parents, moreover, have the right to determine, in accordance with their own religious beliefs, the kind of religious education that their children are to receive" (from Dignitatis Humanae).

Friday, June 27, 2014

Day 7: Fortnight for Freedom

Click here for today's Fortnight for Freedom reflection.  Here's an excerpt:  What contemporary examples are there of religious bodies using coercion in an attempt to spread their faith or hindering others from exercising their faith? What contributions does the Catholic Church make to society and culture?

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Day 6: Fortnight for Freedom

Click here for today's Fortnight for Freedom reflection.  Here's an excerpt:  "Provided that the just civil and religious rights of others are not transgressed, religious bodies must possess the freedom to live out publicly what they believe.  They must be free to gather for worship, to instruct their members and to develop institutions that further the religious life of their members. . . . Consider examples in contemporary life where governments -- federal, state, or local -- fail to respect the above rights.  What is the relationship between the religious freedom of individuals and institutions?"

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Day 5: Fortnight for Freedom

Click here for today's Fortnight for Freedom reflection.  Here's an excerpt:  How does religion contribute to the good of society?  In what ways might it hinder the good of society? Do contemporary Western governments view religion in a positive or negative light?  How can governments today foster or aid the good of religious belief?

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

168 Children, Sex Trafficking Victims, Rescued

Please click here to read a story about 168 children who were rescued by the FBI in a U.S. sex trafficking sweep.  The youngest child rescued was 11 years old.  Many of those rescued were missing from child welfare systems across the country.  Many of them were not reported missing.

Day 4: Fortnight for Freedom

Click here for today's Fortnight for Freedom reflection.  Here's an excerpt:  In what ways is religion being reduced to the merely personal and private? Why should religion have a voice in the public square?

Monday, June 23, 2014

Day 3: Fortnight for Freedom

Click here for today's Fortnight for Freedom reflections.  Here's an excerpt:  What are the contemporary means of seeking, finding and sharing truth?  In what ways can this freedom to seek, to find and to share be inhibited?

Stop Trafficking Newsletter

Click here to access the June issue of Stop Trafficking, focusing on legislation that would help address some of the injustices faced by victims of labor and sexual exploitation and cut profits to traffickers.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Day 2: Fortnight for Freedom

Click here for today's Fortnight for Freedom reflection.  Here's an excerpt:  "The Council states that in order for human beings to fulfill their obligation to seek the truth and live by it, they must be free to do so.  No one or no authority is to force them to believe something to which they themselves have not freely given their consent."

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Day 1: Fortnight for Freedom

Click here to access reflections for Day 1, June 21.  Here's an excerpt:  What challenges to religious liberty do you see within our contemporary world? When the Council says that religious liberty must be upheld "within due limits," what would fall outside of "due limits"?  What religious belief would seriously offend the moral order or a just law?

Friday, June 20, 2014

Nuns Working on the Margins

Catherine O'Connell-Cahill has written a piece for U.S. Catholic entitled, "The Places They'll Go:  Nuns Working on the Margins."  Click here to access the article.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Fortnight for Freedom Begins June 21

Reminder:  The third annual Fortnight for Freedom begins on Saturday, June 21.  Click here for more resources.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Prayer for Our Family In Iraq

Today, remember to join in global, prayerful solidarity for our sisters and brothers in Iraq. Thank you to the Dominican Iraq Coordinating Committee  for providing this "Prayer for Our Family in Iraq":

Gracious God, we place before you our
sisters and brothers in Iraq.
They are numbed and almost
immobilized by the horrendous
violence they have experienced over
the past weeks.

We can hardly imagine the intense
sadness and grief, the confusion and
anger that dominate their
thoughts and prayers..
We know that it is you who can turn
minds to thoughts of peace.
Your Spirit can change hearts. Even
enemies begin to speak to one another
and nations seek the way of peace

Your Spirit is at work when
understanding puts an end to strife,
when hatred is quenched by mercy, and
vengeance give way to forgiveness.
For this we never cease to thank you for
your presence and action in our world.

We simply place our family in Iraq in
your tender and loving care.
We pray this in the name of our brother
Jesus. Amen.

June 19: Day of Prayer for Iraq

At Sunday's Angelus address, Pope Francis said: "I invite all of you to unite yourselves with my prayer for the dear Iraqi nation, especially for the victims and for those who most suffer the consequences of growing violence, in particular the many persons, among whom are so many Christians, who have had to leave their homes."  His prayer included a hope that the people of Iraq would find “security and peace and a future of reconciliation and justice where all Iraqis, whatever their religious affiliation, will be able together to build up their country, making a model of coexistence.”

The leader of the Dominican Sisters of St. Catherine of Siena in Mosul, Iraq has asked her Sisters throughout Iraq to join her in a time of prayer and retreat to beg God for the protection of the Iraqi people, especially the minority Christian community.

In response to these pleas, the Leadership Conference of Women Religious in the United States calls upon people of all denominations in the world community to join the Iraqi Sisters in a moment of prayer on Thursday, June 19 at 6 PM (in your time zone) to pray for an end to the violence and the protection of minority Christians in Iraq.  From the press release:  "The Iraqi Sisters are all Iraqi nationals and ministers in healthcare, social services, and education.  . . . As the Dominican Sisters of St. Catherine continue their days of intense prayer, they ask that people throughout the world join them on June 19, believing that this intensification of global prayer can make a difference."

Monday, June 16, 2014

Rest in peace, Sr. Mary Paule Tacke, CPS

Please pray for the repose of the soul of Sr. Mary Paul Tacke, CPS, an American Missionary Sister of the Precious Blood who was murdered in South Africa yesterday.  What little is known at the time of this writing can be found here, on the CPS website. 

Countdown to Fortnight for Freedom

From the USCCB:  The Fortnight for Freedom: Freedom to Serve will take place from June 21 to July 4, a time when our liturgical calendar celebrates a series of great martyrs who remained faithful in the face of persecution by political power -- St. Thomas More and St. John Fisher, St. John the Baptist, Saints Peter and Paul, and the First Martyrs of the Church of Rome.  The theme of this year's "Fortnight" is the freedom to serve the poor and vulnerable in accord with human dignity and the Church's teaching.  Click here for more information.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Call to Prayer for Father's Day

From the USCCB:  "St. Joseph was a 'just man': Truly Mary's husband and a spiritual father to Christ. On Father's Day this year, let us contemplate the spiritual dimension of fatherhood.  The Holy Spirit, the Giver of Life, enables men to generate life, not only physically, but also spiritually: by guiding, protecting and modeling lives of virtue for others."

Let's pray for all fathers and fathers-to-be.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Pray for Peace

Today, @Pontifex remind us:  "We run the risk of forgetting the suffering which does not affect us personally. May we respond to it, and may we pray for peace in Syria." 

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

SOA Watch Letter Writing Campaign

The SOA Watch is asking for letters to be written to President Obama's Chief of Staff, Denis McDonough, urging an Executive Order to close SOA/WHINSEC.  Click here for more information.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Palestinian and Israeli Peace Prayer in Vatican Gardens on Sunday

As you know, Presidents Shimon Peres and Mahmoud Abbas have accepted the invitation of Pope Francis to gather at the Vatican for a time of prayer.  Sunday, June 8 is the day for this to occur!  Click here for a related article and here for more information about the agenda for the day.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

JRS Director Kidnapped in Afghanistan

We are asked to pray for the safety of Prem Kumar, SJ, the country director of Jesuit Refugee Services in Afghanistan.  It has been reported that he was kidnapped today.  Click here for more information.