Life and Justice
September 26, 2021
As National Migration Week 2021 comes to a close, Pope Francis invites us to celebrate the World Day of Migrants and Refugees. We are called upon to remember and pray for those displaced by conflict and persecution. The Pope’s message pays particular attention to the care of our common family, which, together with the care of our common home, encourages us to become ever more welcoming. We pray that, as more people come to our shores, we may open our hearts to those in need.
Sister Connie Trainor, SSJ
September 19, 2021
In this time of heightened awareness of people arriving at our southern border, as well as those fleeing Afghanistan, we join with Catholics around our nation in celebrating National Migration Week. This is an opportunity for the Church to reflect on the circumstances confronting migrants, including immigrants, refugees, children and victims and survivors of human trafficking. The primary theme this year is “Towards an ever wider “We”. In his letter announcing this year’s theme. Pope Francis emphasizes that “this focus calls us to ensure that ‘after all this, we will think no longer in terms of ‘them and ‘those, but only ‘us. (Fratelli tutti, (We are all brothers) no. 35). The “we” of which Pope Francis speaks is not determined by national borders or ethnic and racial identities but is based on our common humanity and in our conviction that each of us is made in the image of God. The Holy Father has noted that we are a “Church without borders” and as such we have a responsibility to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, comfort those in prison and welcome the stranger, wherever they may be.
For more information on National Migration Week go to:
Sister Connie Trainor, SSJ
September 12, 2021
As we continue to celebrate the Season of Creation, Pope Francis reminds us that this is a time to renew our relationship with our Creator and with all of creation. He encourages everyone to question the way we live, and to turn “towards lifestyles that are simpler and more respectful of the environment”. The Holy Father has also stressed that the “cry of the earth and the cry of the poor are becoming increasingly serious and alarming”, urging Catholics to take “decisive, urgent action to transform this crisis into an opportunity”. Our Holy Father also adds, “Let us pray and work for our common home in these times of grave planetary crisis.”
Sister Connie Trainor
August 22, 2021
Pope Francis has established September 1 through October 4 (feast of Saint Francis of Assisi) as the Season of Creation. During this season we are asked to join together to celebrate creation and protect our common home through prayer, reflection and action. This year we celebrate this Season of Creation mindful of the fact that our world continues to deal with COVID-19 pandemic as well as a devastating climate crisis. The global Christian family is called to awaken to the urgent need to heal our relationships with each other and to encourage our parish communities to do the same.—Sister Connie Trainor
August 15, 2021
We are so grateful to the members of our Life & Justice Ministry who also belong to the Catholic Relief Services Chapter of South Jersey. This past week they met with Representative Jeff Van Drew concerning the need for humanitarian aid for our suffering brothers and sisters throughout the world. They hope to meet with Senator Cory Booker later this month. For more information please visit www.crs.org -Sister Connie
Ignatian Solidarity Network is another suggestion from the Life and Justice Ministry for your summer reading and praying. Their mission is to network, educate and inform advocates for social justice. This is based on the teachings of Saint Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits. If interested, please visit their website at:
Life & Justice Suggested Reading List
At our last meeting we suggested various online offerings in the area of environmental justice. We also suggested some books that deal with justice & mercy issues. Some ideas include:
- The Compassion Connection by Sister Catherine Nerney, SSJ (Love your Neighbor)
- The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson (Historical Study of The Great Migration)
- Laudato Si’ by Pope Francis (Care of Creation)
- American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins (A Novel about Immigration)
21 Day Environmental Justice Challenge
For more information and to sign up, go to:21-Day Catholic Enviro Justice Challenge (wufoo.com)
Parish Lenten Series
“The Church’s Best Kept Secret”
Catholic social teaching is often referred to as “The Church’s best kept secret." That may be true. But the teachings themselves are no secret at all. In fact they are very much common sense. Essentially, Catholic Social Teachings are just a means of putting the concept of “Love thy Neighbor” into action.
The Parish of St Maximilian Kolbe Life & Justice Ministry hosted a series of workshops to discuss Catholic Social Teachings and relating the teachings to our communities and our role in those communities. The purpose of the presentation(s) was to provide participants with an introduction into some topics of Catholic Social Teaching. The hope would be to encourage a greater investigation into this rich tradition and to see how this touches our everyday lives.
The sessions featured presenters who are involved in a variety of community based initiatives. Presenters focused on their topic and service and relate this topic and service to Catholic Social Teachings including Life & Dignity, Participation, Rights & Responsibilities, The Poor & Vulnerable, Rights of Workers, Care for our Environment and Solidarity.
These relaxed conversational presentations demonstrated how these principles are being actively applied in our community on a daily basis. We also discussed opportunities for attendees to participate in these efforts.
For more information, go to Love your Neighbor
January 31, 2021
The Life and Justice Ministry continues to study the themes of Catholic Social Teaching. This week we look at the “Call to Family, Community and Participation”.
The person is not only sacred but also social. How we organize our society - in economics and politics, in law and policy- directly affects human dignity and the capacity of individuals to grow in community. Marriage and family are the central social institutions that must be supported and strengthened. We believe people have a right and a duty to participate in society, seeking together the common good and well-being of all, especially the poor and vulnerable.
Sister Connie Trainor, SSJ
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