Pope Francis does not want to be a superman and finds it offensive to be characterized that way. In a recent interview, he said: "To depict the pope as a sort of superman, a sort of star, seems offensive to me. The pope is a man who laughs, cries, sleeps tranquilly and has friends like everyone else, a normal person," (Reuters News)
As we approach the first anniversary of Pope Francis, many stories on his words and actions have been written, discussed and debated as much of the world examined him. Everyone has an opinion on what they have observed. Since anniversaries are always a time to reflect on a person or an event, here are two comments from a Buddhist neighbor and a Dominican Associate of Peace in Ohio. What thoughts would you add to these comments?
"Peace comes from being able to contribute the best that we have, and all that we are, toward creating a world that supports everyone. But it is also securing the space for others to contribute the best that they have and all that they are." – Hafsat Abiola
Have you noticed, we are in the midst of a pre-event publicity campaign? Take a look at the homepage of the Dominican Sisters of Peace, there is a new tab: Catholic Sisters Week. Google the same things and a growing list of web pages is appearing. There is a February 7 article in National Catholic Reporter detailing the three year event. Check out the Hilton Foundation’s website, they are the sponsoring organization. In each of these you have an invitation to be a part of this year's event.
"We commit ourselves to be women of peace who: create welcoming communities, inviting others to join us as vowed members, associates, volunteers, and partners in our mission to be the Holy Preaching." 2009 Chapter Commitments
Dominicans Sisters and Associates of Peace are happy to welcome newly committed Associates in Houma, Louisiana. The following are excerpts from Sr. Suzanne Brauer’s reflections shared at their recent Commitment Ceremony.
"Dominic walked, preached, praised and ministered because God had called him to do that in Spain, France and Rome. We are here today because God has called seven beautiful Louisiana women to join him in the walk for God, the Walk of Holy Preaching. They are Gayle Domangue, Patricia (Teesie) Domangue, Mary Evans, Margaret Kohmann, Beth Ledet, Joanne Morrison, and Jane Quatman.
"…neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord." - Romans 8:38 (New American Bible)
As I heard this read at prayers last Thursday, I thought 'neither snow, nor drifts, nor cancellations, nor snowpacked roads' would keep our Dominican Volunteers or I from coming to Heartland Center for Spirituality in Kansas in February, with God's help!
Dominican Associates of Peace come in all sizes, shapes, ages, geographic origins, marital status, life experiences, and political allegiances. Thus to find a "game" that all could play might seem difficult to do. However, a game created by NETWORK, the National Catholic Social Justice Lobby, called "State of the Union Bingo: Pope Francis Edition" seems to have come very close!
The movement of people across boundaries is part of a collective human experience. There is an element of this experience that must be eradicated: the trafficking of human beings through the use of fraud, force, and coercion for the purpose of forced prostitution or forced labor. - Committee on Migration, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
Dominican Sisters and Associates of Peace articulate a commitment to "promote justice through solidarity with those who are marginalized, especially women and children." So when we read the compelling message from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, we ask ourselves, what can we as individuals and as groups do in solidarity against human trafficking?
"Yes, if you want to say that I was a drum major, say that I was a drum major for justice; say that I was a drum major for peace; I was a drum major for righteousness." Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. February 4, 1968
"Being a Christian is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction." Pope Benedict XVI, Deus Caritas Est, 2005
These words by Pope Benedict are repeated in Evangelii Gaudium as words Pope Francis states that he never tires of repeating. Francis continues "Thanks solely to this encounter-or renewed encounter-with God's love, we are liberated from our narrowness and self-absorption." (Evangelii Gaudium, p.4)
As in years past, many Dominican Associates of Peace gathered at various locales around the country during the holidays to work on group projects and to celebrate together. We are pleased to share with you a snapshot (click here) of some of these ways Dominican Associates share in community and in the preaching mission of the Dominican Sisters of Peace. If you'd like to learn more about becoming an Associate, click here for basic information, or contact us by email at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org, or call us toll-free at 855.313.3131.