Wisconsin Province E-News Archive

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Wisconsin/ Chicago-Detroit Provinces of the Society of Jesus: February E-news Social-Interactional Ministries

Social and International Ministries

 JUNE 2014 e-news: Social-International Ministries

FAITH-JUSTICE

(NEW) Jesuit Alumni Letter in Support of Immigration Reform: Join Jesuit high school and university alumni expressing support for comprehensive immigration reform to fellow Jesuit alumni serving in the U.S. House of Representatives (currently 44 members out 435). Click here to learn more about this opportunity organized by the Ignatian Solidarity Network which seeks 1,000 signatures by mid-July.

Unfolding Humanitarian Disaster are the words used by Bishop Flores (Brownsville) to describe the current reality along the Southern border where he serves. Flores urges reconsideration of US deportation practices “so as to take into account that cartels are co-opting the very people fleeing their influence, often forcing them to cooperate with their plans, or face death for themselves or their families.” Click here for May 20 letter to Secretary of State Kerry.

(May 29) USCCB Mass for Immigration Reform:  You can stream a video of the Mass on Capitol Hill (St. Peter’s Church) and the Press Conference which followed. Click for Press Release and Homily text (Archbishop Wenski). On the same day, members of the Bishops Committee on Migration also visited members of the House of Representatives, including House Speaker John Boehner, urging immigration reform as soon as possible. /// New Video on Immigration and the Catholic Church:  Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor: Immigration and the Catholic Church is a new video by USCCB Migration and Refugee Services that highlights the Church’s long history of pastoral care for immigrants and advocacy on immigration issues. Watch the video now.

Jesuits Urge U.S. Senate to Support Sentencing Policy Reform:In a letter co-signed by Frs. Thomas Smolich, Gregory Boyle (Homeboy Industries) and Michael Kennedy (Jesuit Restorative Justice Initiative) Jesuits call on the Senate to end “one-size-fits-all sentencing policies” that fail to address the complexity of our nation’s criminal justice system. The bi-partisan bill, known as the Smarter Sentencing Act, aims to save billions spent on non-violent drug offenders by reducing mandatory minimum sentences for some drug crimes and allow judicial discretion for non-violent drug offenses. /// There is a similar interfaith sign-on letter which pastors and presidents can sign to endorse the legislation. /// Finally, groups may contact Matt Cuff at the Jesuit Conference to be included in a letter of support for the Second Chance Act, a program which aims to reduce recidivism by providing job-training and re-entry services for formerly incarcerated individuals. Click for USCCB letter supporting Second Chance.

Jesuits initiate shareholder dialogue with Canadian mining company: Led by the provinces of Wisconsin and English Canada, the National Jesuit Committee on Investment Responsibility (NJCIR) will begin a new shareholder engagement with Canadian mid-tier mining company Aura Minerals regarding the need to develop a comprehensive, verifiable and transparent human rights policy. Click to read more.

The Death Penalty remains a deep concern or potential concern in some of our Midwest states.  In the wake of the recent botched execution in Oklahoma, many ask, “How can I help end the use of the death penalty?” The Catholic Mobilizing Network has a number of helpful educational resources, timely information, and ways that parishes and individuals can get involved in this important work.

A Catholic perspective on the growing wealth and income inequality gapis addressed in thisthis short video, a USCCB 2-page primer on the topic.

Meeting of Social Coordinators of the Conferences, and Leaders of Global Ignatian Advocacy Networks (GIAN). From May 12-16, the Secretariat for Social Justice and Ecology convened a meeting of Conference Social Coordinators of Conferences and leaders of Global Ignatian Advocacy Networks (GIAN) at the General Curia in Rome.  Topics included: migration, ecology, peace and human rights, the right to education, and natural/mineral resource extraction. Father General presided at the Eucharist on Thursday, 15May. Click to read more.

Minimum wage/economic justice: Thanks to all who participated in the Jesuit Conference action alert on the minimum wage which still remains open /// Check out this new website created by the anti-poverty group Half-in-Ten that is dedicated to bringing together the latest data and news on domestic poverty.

Using Jailed Migrants as a Pool of Cheap Labor: Click for New York Times story. Article maintains that everyday 5,500 detained immigrants work in immigration detention centers. Some are paid $1 per day and others earn nothing. Note:Jesuits are leading Human Rights shareholder dialogues with two major private prison companies mentioned in the story (GEO Group and Corrections Corporation of America).

INTERNATIONAL SOLIDARITY

 Considerations for Hondurans in the American Asylum Process: Click here for new Jesuit Conference Report regarding treatment of Honduran asylum cases within the U.S. System, complete with relevant law and information on conditions in Honduras that rise to the level of persecution for certain groups.  As record numbers of Hondurans arrive in the U.S. expressing that they left their homeland because of fears and violence, the U.S. immigration authorities must begin to understand the very real threats to the lives and well-being of particular groups of Honduran nationals in their country of origin /// On May 14, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) expressed deep concerned about the deaths of children, adolescents, and youths in Honduras which comes within the context of widespread violence and citizen insecurity. Click here for press release.

25th Anniversary of the Martyrs Commemoration: In honor of the upcoming anniversary of the Jesuit martyrs (November 16, 2014) the Ignatian Solidarity Network is seeking reflections on how the martyrs influenced U.S. Jesuit institutions.  Submit reflections and visit their 25th anniversary resource site.

Educating at the Margins is the topic for the most recent Promotio Iustitae. Articles from a variety of Jesuit conferences regarding education as a human right for all.

Jesuit Refugee Service/USA2013 Annual Report: Click here to download a pdf /// Creighton University students learn about life in refugee camps through the JRS Refugee Camp Simulation, an interactive experience designed to raise awareness of the realities of life for people in refugee camps. Read more about this event which was held in early May.

Analysis of Narenda Modi Election: Melville Perera, SJ (Director of Northeast Social Research Center, Kohima Region) shared this article to help understand the meaning of India’s election of the new Prime Minister and his campaign promises.

CARE FOR CREATION

(May 29) US Bishops Urge Action on Carbon Pollution to Stem Climate Change: In a letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, Miami Archbishop Thomas G. Wenski (USCCB Committee Chair for Domestic Justice and Human Development) writes on behalf of USCCB supporting carbon reduction standards to mitigate climate change. He adds that we are particularly concerned with the effects of pollution on the poor and vulnerable both nationally and globally. On this point, he cites concern for carbon emissions by power plants which are usually located near low income communities and he also references the destructive impacts of climate change on vulnerable communities around the globe. He calls for US leadership in globally negotiated climate change agreements. Click for Press Release/Letter calling for action now to protect human life and dignity in the future /// Click here for a concise and timely reflection on the Bishops Action by Jim Hug.

Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation,and Vulnerability is the title of the new report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Clickherefor executive summary, full report and online video which presents the collaborative scientific consensus of 308 authors from 70 countries /// Climate Action vs. Climate Denial is a slideshow by the Environmental Defense Fund offers this on-line slide show in light of most recent Intergovernmental Report

Water has no enemy – water is part of the common good: Provincial of Eastern Africa, Agbonkhianmeghe E. Orobator delivered this lecture at the Pontifical University, Maynooth, Ireland. Drawing from Catholic Social Teaching, he highlighted that water needs to be understood as a common good: “The commodification of water as a privatized tradable resource, the inaccessibility of water to the most vulnerable populations and the indiscriminate pollution of water bodies all constitute a grave assault on this most vital and essential common good and the right of human and natural ecologies that depend on it for survival.” Click for video.

 

 

February E-news: Social-International Ministries

FAITH-JUSTICE

“No Worker Should Be Forced to Raise a Family in Poverty”

says a new Jesuit Conference Advocacy Alert which supports the Fair Minimum Wage Act to raise the federal minimum wage from the current $7.25/hour to $10.10/hour over three years. Currently, a mother of two working a minimum wage job earns $15,080 annually which is $4,450 below the federal poverty line for a family of three. Click here to learn more or take action on this new Jesuit advocacy opportunity. This alert follows the lead of a recent US Catholic Bishops Minimum Wage letter to lawmakers which notes that the minimum wage, as a static number, increasingly falls short as family living costs steadily increase. A recent poll shows strong bi-partisan (80% of Americans) support raising the minimum wage to $10.10/hour with future indexing to keep pace with inflation. (Feb 13) Jesuit Fred Kammer debunks the myth that raising the minimum wage will cost jobs and shows that in fact it will raise people out of poverty.

Ignatian Family Advocacy Month

IFAM is currently underway for participating schools and ministries. IFAM is a program of the Ignatian Solidarity Network in consultation with the Jesuit Commission for Social and International Ministries. Click here for a packet which includes resources to Learn-Pray-Act for Jesuit Conference legislative priorities. On-line manuals (one designed for parishes and one for schools) include ready-to-use resources such as: bulletin announcements, advocacy letters and in-district legislative scheduling tips.

Ignatian Pro-Life Network

Ignatian Pro-Life Network coordinated another successful Ignatian Mass for Life which was held in conjunction with the annual March for Life (Wednesday, January 22). Despite harsh weather and bitter cold, more than 800 attended the Mass. Story here or visit the Facebook page to learn more about this year’s 40th anniversary events and ways to be involved.

Jesuit Volunteer Corps

Jesuit Volunteer Corps is the subject of a recent Atlantic Monthly story.

Lighting the Pathway

Student-led conference on immigration will be held at Loyola University Chicago on February 22. Conference includes students from area schools including Marquette, Loyola, Notre Dame and DePaul. Click for Facebook page.

Pope Francis’s 10 New Year Resolutions

Even though 2014 is not so new, these compiled resolutions are good through the year including practical wisdom such as: Don’t Gossip; Make Time for Others; and Choose the more humble purchase.

“Pacem in Terris at 50

Catholics and Human Rights in the 21st Century” David Hollenbach, S.J. delivered this annual Markoe-DePorres lecture at Creighton which is now available through on-line video streaming.

INTERNATIONAL SOLIDARITY

South Sudan update

On January 23, a cease-fire agreement was formally signed between the Government of South Sudan and the SPLM in opposition. Additional information: Pope Francis calls for an end to the atrocities and humanitarian difficulties facing the people of South Sudan (January 22); Catholic Bishops of Eastern Africa Statement on South Sudan Crisis (January 23) and JRS Feb 14 press release describing an uneasy calm in Upper Nile State. Please contact John Sealey if you would like ongoing updates.

A Nelson Mandela Tribute

Nelson Mandela Tribute has been written by Eastern Africa Provincial, Agbonkhianmeghe E. Orobator. Click here for “Madiba, Our Ancestor” which appeared in The Tablet (14 December 2013).

The challenge of migration

The challenge of migration status and answers is addressed in Promotio Iustitiae, v. 113, 2013/4 which looks at this global phenomenon from perspective of Africa, Asia-Pacific, Europe, India, Latin America and USA.

Syria Dispatch

Click here to read a JRS update from Dutch Jesuit Frans van der Lugt. Presently there are 3,000 Syrians still trapped in the old city of Homs after a two-year siege and blockade. Through an agreement last week in Geneva, some relief might now be possible through a “humanitarian pause” in Homs.

ECOLOGY NEWS

International Jesuit Ecology Project Workshop (IJEP) II

IJEP is an international working group of Jesuits and lay colleagues who are currently developing an online living text to be titled Healing Earth. The IJEP group met for a second consultation at Loyola Retreat and Ecology Campus (Woodstock, IL) during mid-February. The three year project will yield the online text examining ecological issues such as bio-diversity, resource extraction, fossil fuels, food/water, and climate change through lenses of environmental science, ethics and spirituality. Fr. Michael Garanzini (as Secretary for Higher Education) convened the group as a practical response to Fr. General’s 2011 letter On Ecology. Target audience will be late secondary school and early college. Project co-directors are Drs. Nancy Tuchman (LUC Institute of Environmental Sustainability) and Michael Schuck (LUC Theology) with contributions by over 60 scholars. The projected release date is early 2015. Click to read more.

Flights for Forests

Aviation accounts for between 4-9% of the climate change impact. Recognizing that the Jesuit mission requires many to fly frequently in order to work together for greater social justice in the world, the Asia Pacific Jesuit Conference has created its own carbon offset alternative project called Flights for Forests which benefits forest renewal activities led by youth groups in rural Cambodia, Indonesia and the Philippines.

Just Sustainability

Hope for the Commons (Aug 7-9) is a conference to be hosted by Seattle University’s Center for Environmental Justice and Sustainability. Click here for more information and please note that the proposal deadline is rapidly approaching.

Appalachian Sensations

A Journey through the Seasons is a new book of reflections and meditation by Al Fritsch, S.J. Click here for news and other recent publications on topics of spirituality, ecology and simple living.

World Water Day

(March 22) Supporting materials at UN official site.

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December 2013 E-news: Social-International-Ecology Ministries, Faith-Justice

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Save the Date (December 10): Pope Francis to initiate a global effort to combat hunger. On that day, Pope Francis will launch the One Human Family, Food for All campaign as parishes, schools and communities initiate a wave by prayer starting at noon in each time zone across the world. Please mark your calendars for December 10 as we join Pope Francis and our global Church to fight hunger both domestically and internationally. Helpful campaign resources:

Caritas International Flyer and Video
Caritas International Global Hunger Campaign Facebook page
CRS Food for All (International Hunger Focus)
Catholic Charities USA (Domestic Hunger Focus)
Campaign Prayer

Ignatian Family Teach-In for Justice:

Over 1,300 attended this year’s conference (Nov 16-18) representing over 60 Catholic institutions from 23 states. The Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill provided over 100 scheduled visits with Congressional offices to express support for Comprehensive Immigration Reform, an increase to the federal minimum wage and continued access to food assistance for U.S. families in need. Click here to read more including links to social media outlets with ongoing updates, photos and videos of keynotes. Thanks to all Midwest institutions, Jesuits and lay leaders who attended!

Upcoming Immigration Advocacy Opportunities:

The Catholic Justice for Immigrants (FJI) campaign will provide liturgical and advocacy resources for the following: Feast Day of Our Lady of Guadalupe (December 12); National Migration Week 2014 (January 5-11) with a special emphasis on Jan. 7 to send JFI e-postcards through the website and Jan. 8 as a national call-in day using the toll-free number. The Papal message for World Day of Migrants and Refugees (January 19),/a> has already been posted /// Thanks to all who coordinated November events commemorating the Feast Day of St. Frances Cabrini (patron of immigrants). Activities included immigration advocacy weeks at Creighton and Marquette; and Ben Anderson with ISAIAH helped coordinate a successful pilgrimage covered by Twin Cities local media. Nationally, USCCB generated 7,694 calls to Capitol Hill on November 13.
“The Relentless Assault on America’s Hungry” by Fred Kammer, SJ, is a new article available at the JRSI website. It provides a timely analysis, in light of the House/Senate Budget Committee meetings underway now, which may bring additional cuts to programs that benefit the poorest including Supplemental Nutrition Assistance (SNAP), Head Start, Social Security and Medicaid. Fr. Kammer’s 2-pager includes useful statistics framed by Catholic Social Teaching.
Mascot Controversy: This Nov 5 Washington Post editorial, syndicated widely, references an earlier Washington Post letter from Red Cloud Indian School leaders Bob Braveheart and George Winzenburg, SJ regarding the Washington Redskins mascot name.
Jesuit Volunteer Corps Participates in Groundbreaking Survey: Click here for executive summary and press release regarding a new survey of 5,000 former Jesuit Volunteers and related full-time Catholic volunteer programs modeled after JVC. Research was done by CARA and the Catholic Volunteer Network (CVN). Among the findings: Almost 60% of respondents have a Master’s degree or higher; fewer than 10% of married former volunteers have ever divorced; more than 80% of former volunteers continue to be engaged in charitable giving and volunteer programs.
(NEW) Pontifical Report on Human Trafficking: The Pontifical Academies of Sciences and Social Sciences organized a preparatory workshop on the topic of Human Trafficking on November 2-3, 2013 which produced this Statement on Trafficking in Human Beings with recommendations for religious, governmental, business and civil society groups. Religious communities and ministries are encouraged to: deepen our own education and awareness; incorporate the subject of human trafficking into pastoral care; create an advocacy/action commission to address trafficking; encourage public knowledge of all forms of exploitation associated with trafficking; provide victims with shelter on our properties and make every effort to assess their needs. Regionally, a number of our Ohio ministries have connected with the Collaborative Initiative to End Human Trafficking; and the Stop Enslavement monthly newsletter provides ongoing news and analysis helpful for religious groups and communities.

International Solidarity

KOHIMA Advocacy: The Jesuit sponsored Northeast Social Research Center (NESRC) welcomes our international solidarity to help repeal the Armed Forces Special Power Act in India which essentially allows military repression with no accountability. According to NESRC, the 1958 law leads to human rights violations and empowers army officers to arrest or use force without a warrant “on mere suspicion that the person was planning a terrorist act. The result has been fake encounter killings of more than 1,000 civilians per year in the three North Eastern States of Assam, Manipur and Mizoram alone in the last 10 years.” Click here to read more and consider signing the petition.
PERU: Matteo Ricci Center (Ayacucho) recently celebrated its third birthday. The Center was established as place of dialogue and encounter to encourage cultural diversity and social responsibility. Strategies include: spirituality programs, art workshops, public forums, and film exhibitions. The Center’s mission is integral faith and human formation that promotes justice with a commitment for the poor and the excluded. (Source: Headlines 2013/10)
Persistent Insecurity: Abuses against Central Americans in Mexico is a new report from JRS/USA noting that Central America migrants moving through Mexico toward USA require special human rights considerations because their vulnerability is directly linked to regional insecurity. Report includes specific recommendations to alleviate the abuses faced by migrants on their journey.

Ecology

“The Role of Structure and Infrastructure in Disaster Reduction” is a new editorial by Pedro Walpole, SJ reflecting on the aftermath of Yolanda (Haiyan). Walpole directs the Institute of Environmental Science for Social Change at the Ateneo de Manila University, Quezon City, Philippines and also serves as Ecology Coordinator for the Jesuit Conference Asia Pacific.
Trash Audit Findings and Response: Along with promoting ecology and locally grown food, the St Ignatius High School (Cleveland) Ploughman and Green Team Clubs completed a trash audit in October. After sorting through trash at the campus, they determined that 15% of discarded waste was actually recyclable (201 lbs/week) and another 15% (205 lbs/week) was compostable. The school recently received a $2,000 grant from Cuyahoga County Waste Management Department for three composting tumblers.

Advent Peace and please continue to share your news,

John Sealey
Provincial Assistant for Social and International Ministries, Chicago-Detroit and Wisconsin Jesuits
www.jesuitpartners.org | www.jesuits-chgdet.org

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OCTOBER 2013 E-news: Social-International Ministries

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Faith-Justice

Time is now for humane immigration advocacy: With the fiscal crisis behind us, the House needs to act soon on immigration or momentum will stall with the run-up to the 2014 elections. In short, NOW is our time to express support for comprehensive, family-based reform with an achievable pathway to citizenship. On Monday, November 18, over 800 advocates will gather at the U.S. Capitol for Ignatian Family Advocacy Day
. HUMANE IMMIGRATION REFORM and domestic poverty are this year’s focus issues. Please consider participating in the “10,000 Strong for Humane Immigration Reform” campaign. Campuses, parishes, ministries and communities can sign postcards to be brought to Capitol Hill on November 18. Click here to order cards and learn more.
For up-to-date advocacy notices on pending immigration legislation, visit Jesuit Advocates and/or the Interfaith Immigration Coalition.
On the Nov 13 Feast Day of Mother Cabrini, patron of immigrants, USCCB’s Justice for Immigrants campaign will promote a National Call-In Day to Congress expressing the simple message: “Support a path to citizenship and oppose the SAFE Act.” /// Periodic messages are encouraged and advocates need not be voter-registered to contact their respective legislators. In this way, youth and immigrants should be emboldened to add their voice.

Option for the Young = Option for the Poor: The younger you are the more likely you will be in poverty says the most recent data from the CCHD website Povertyusa.org
Click here for new USCCB Webinar addressing US Census poverty statistics and our Catholic response.
Related data from new census figures:
-One in Four Households with Children now report food hardship
-Striking it Richer: The top decile now accumulates 50.4% of national income, the highest since 1917 when this measure began
-Census Bureau Population Survey, Annual Social & Economic Supplements (graphbelow)

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World Food Day message: In a statement to the UN Food and Agricultural Organization, Pope Francis said,”the waste of food is but one of the fruits of the throw away culture which often leads to sacrificing men and women to the idols of profit and consumption.” Click here for his full Oct 16 statement.

Where Justice and Mercy Meet: Catholic Opposition to the Death Penalty:On Saturday November 9, the Catholic Mobilizing Network to End the Use of the Death Penalty (CMN) will host a national conference at Catholic University (Washington, D.C.). Proceedings will be live-streamed for those who cannot attend.

Illuminating the Horizon of Hope is the theme of the November 16-18, Ignatian Family Teach-In for Justice. Keynotes include: Sarita Gupta (Jobs With Justice), Kyle Kramer (environmentalist), James Martin (America), Dan Misleh (Catholic Coalition on Climate Change), Peggy O’Neill (Centro Arte Para La Paz, El Salvador). The conference will also include Mass, prayer, networking sessions and break-out presentations facilitated by over 50 organizations in the lead-up to a Congressional Advocacy Day (see Immigration above).

International Solidarity

NEW Jesuit statement on migration/refugees by European, Middle East and African Provincials: Recognizing the recent Lampedusa tragedy and remembering the thousands who have died trying to reach Europe over the past 20 years, major superiors representing 6,000 Jesuits over two continents released this October 25 statement. “We believe this is a time of urgency for our societies in the face of this grave moral issue” and then they address six themes: Save Lives; Stop Arms supplies to Africa; Increase shared hospitality by receiving nations; Improve conditions for asylum seekers; Reject far-right populist rhetoric; and Cooperate with other people of good will. Are these not similar themes for us in the Americas?

New Kohima Report: The 2013 annual report by the North Eastern Social Research Centre (NESRC) is now available. NESRC is a work of the Kohima Jesuit Region, a unit now twinned with both Midwest provinces. NESRC conducts advocacy-oriented research on North East social issues such as displacement, conflict, bio-diversity, and tribal identity.

Africa’s Future and Our Future: Partnership not Charity: Click here for story, video and full text delivered by Eastern Africa Jesuit Provincial Agbonkhianmeghe E. Orobator at the October 21, 2013 Pope Paul VI Memorial Lecture in London.

Honduras Delegation: Click here for photos and reflections by Luke Hansen, SJ regarding the recent Jesuit Conference-led delegation to visit Jesuit projects in Honduras including Radio Progreso and ERIC, a social center for reflection, investigation and communication. Honduras now has the highest murder rate in the world (86/100,000) and associated social unrest and decline which is the result of mining displacement/deregulation, narco-trafficking, and corruption/impunity.

PERU: Peace Prize 2013 to Jesuit Fr. Frederick Green: This award was established by the Peruvian Ministry for Women and Vulnerable Populations. Since his arrival in Peru, Fr Green has devoted himself to the social apostolate, mainly in the field of formation and education, always focusing on the less fortunate. For further information, click for English article or Spanish interview.

Ecology

Melting Ice, Mending Creation: A Catholic Approach to Climate Change is a free on-line study guide developed by the Catholic Coalition on Climate Change

EcoJesuit comments on the recently released Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, Climate Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis. Click here for the article by José Ignacio García, S.J. which helps to synthesize the 2,000 page document written by 259 scientists from 39 countries. Fr Garcia closes by saying that lifestyle changes and civil society engagement are imperative. He also adds that adaptation to climate change will be real challenge, “we realize that the situation is very likely to change in a significant way. The challenge will be to adapt to new – and uneasier – conditions, a major challenge for individuals and communities.”
Separately, EcoJesuit also considers the practical question of what I must do to reduce my CO2-equivalent emissions.

Who is listening to the cry of the earth? is explored by the Toronto-based Jesuit Forum for Social Faith and Justice October 2013 issue.

Vatican Hosts Mining CEOs for Day of Reflection: Story by participant and economist Josep Mària Serrano, SJ.

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July Wisconsin Province Social-International E-news


Jesuit Dispatch (Syria):
On June 16, the Provincial of the Middle-East Province reported of deteriorating conditions in Homs, where the Jesuits have a parish in one of the neighborhoods under attack. “The situation is very delicate, and each attempt to enter the old part of the city means suicide. Bombing has gone on uninterrupted since Thursday and gives no respite, and the widespread presence of numerous snipers makes entering the old part of Homs impossible…  The problem is catering for the daily needs, since we cannot send them any goods from here, as the roads are completely blocked.” Click here for full report shared via Digital News Service SJ (June 21 issue).

Creighton University is the first Catholic, Jesuit University to achieve Fair Trade status.
The designation is given by Fair Trade Colleges & Universities USA and you can click here for press release.

Shortest Summer Ever:
Michael Rossman left for Nairobi one day after province days and immediately began faculty meetings at Loyola High School in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania. Classes are now underway and you can follow Michael’s reflection on his blog.

CP 70 Daily News:
Daily updates from the 70th Jesuit Procurator’s Congregation (CP 70) underway in Nairobi (June 29-July 15) are available at www.easternafricajesuits.org and www.sjwebcp70.com.

JRS: New Statement on Gender Violence / Letter to G20 summit on care of refugees:
Jesuit Refugee Service officially signed on as a member in the civil society coalition of the International Campaign to Stop Rape and Gender Violence in Conflict. In 2011, the 10 JRS regional directors selected gender-based violence as an advocacy priority  /// To mark the occasion of World Refugee Day 2012 held on June 20, JRS International issued a letter to leaders attending the G20 Summit to put hospitality at the heart of globalization and not lose sight of the needs of more than 45 million forcibly-displaced migrants worldwide. Click here for both JRS stories and other news.

Jesuits at the Rio+20 Summit:
During the week of June 18, members of the Ignatian Advocacy Network ecology workgroup met together in Rio de Janeiro to take part in two parallel conferences on sustainable economy and the climate. The official United Nations “Rio+20 Earth Summit” brought together governmental, non-governmental and business leaders and the simultaneous “Summit of the Peoples” Conference was designed for grassroots social movements and activists. Attendees write that the official Rio+20 Summit was a foretold failure.  “The final document requires no commitments on the part of governments at the international level.  Nowadays we know that the problems related to climate change and preservation of the environment can be dealt with effectively, for we possess the resources for doing so.  The solutions are expensive, but doing nothing now will involve far greater costs in the future.  Not much time is left before we exceed the thresholds which will bring about irreversible changes….More interesting than the official gathering was the parallel “Summit of the Peoples” conference.  It had more passion and less cool reserve; it had fewer technical resources, but was more lively and people-oriented; it was less artificial and cosmetic, more humble and real….The greatest hope is found in those conscious, active groups that are multiplying around the world…In the coming decades, the future of the planet and the fate of the poor, those who are most threatened, will be decided mainly by the cultural changes – changes of convictions, attitudes, commitments – brought about by global citizens who already share a common problematic and a common destiny.  This is a privileged field for the mission of the Society and the Church.” Read more at the blog Ecojesuit

Jesuits Follow in the Footsteps of Migrants
On June 14, 2012, a group of Jesuits began a five-week journey along the “migration corridor” from Central America to the United States (El Progresso, Honduras to Nogales, Arizona). Along the way, they have been visiting shelters, human rights organizations and parishes that assist migrants as they move through the migration corridor. On a blog site established to chronicle their journey, they set forth their hope to better understand the complexities and hardships faced by migrants on their journey to the U.S.  The blog is called Journey Moments: The Migrant Corridor, and it includes photos, reflections and a mapping of the journey (English and Spanish) Read more…

Other Immigration Developments:
On June 15, President Obama announced a policy change to provide administrative relief for undocumented youth and allow them to legally reside in the USA through work permits. This action would end the threat of deportation for almost 1 million undocumented immigrants below the age of 30. This is certainly an important step in the right direction toward the Church’s eventual call for comprehensive immigration reform to allow earned citizenship for many of the 12 million undocumented currently living in the United States. Click here for USCCB statement of support for the President’s move with a congressional call to action to go one step further and pass the DREAM Act. Click here for an overview by Catholic Legal Immigration Network

On June 25, the Supreme Court rejected most aspects of Arizona’s controversial and legislation known as SB 1070 which became a model for other municipalities and states. This flawed anti-immigrant legislation has been long criticized by the USCCB so the Supreme Court ruling was generally affirmed by the Bishops and immigrant rights groups. However, the Bishops caution that the ruling does not fully lift the requirement that immigrants have to show papers in some circumstances. This “show me your papers” provision may in time prove unconstitutional if it leads to racial profiling and other human rights abuses.  Click here for USCCB statement on the Court Ruling and click here for a statement by Jesuit Advocates USA (a service of the Jesuit Conference and JRS)
As always, the go-to website is Justice for Immigrants.

Jesuit Higher Education Immersion Experience Coordinators Converge for Summit:
Twenty-five immersion experience coordinators from nineteen universities across the country converged for the Ignatian Immersion Experience Coordinator Summit sponsored by the Ignatian Solidarity Network.  The Summit was the first of its kind for the Jesuit university staff.  John Carroll University in University Heights, Ohio, hosted the gathering which took place from June 19-21, 2012. Click here for full story and photos

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April Wisconsin Province Social-International E-news

Jesuit Archbishop in Peru Receives Death Threats:
Jesuit Archbishop Pedro Baretto (Huancayo, Peru) has received death threats for his recent statement calling for responsible environmental regulation of a multi-metallic smelter in La Oroya. The smelter has been operated by Doe Run Peru a subsidiary of Renco Group (US privately held company) and was forced to shut down in 2009 after pressure from Church leaders. Recently there have been moves to re-open the operation without necessary environmental improvements, which prompted a letter from Archbishop Baretto and the ensuing threat.

Context: La Oroya is one of the 10 most polluted places on earth and a St. Louis University public health study found that 90% of children living there have excessive levels of lead. Abp. Baretto will be Washington, DC later this month for two World Bank meetings and a conversation with faith leaders. Jesuit Conference secretary for social and international ministry, Tom Greene, SJ, will also meet with him. Additional Resources/Links:

Environmental Education and Catholic Religious Education:
Exploring a Synthesis of Organizing Concepts, Standards and Best Practices is the title of a new special report prepared with support from the Jesuit Social and Pastoral Ministries Research Grant Program. The research report was commissioned by small grants from the Jesuit Commission for Social and International Ministries and The Congregation of Notre Dame and prepared by the interfaith ecology group Greenfaith. It is designed to be a practical resource for environmental education and sustainability practices with references drawing from Catholic sources and principles. Contact John Sealey for pdf of the report.

Jesuits and Religious leaders call for a Faithful Budget:
(March 22) The Jesuit Conference joined religious leaders and faith-based organizations unveiling a “Faithful Budget” proposal for congressional consideration. The Priorities for a Faithful Budget is a set of comprehensive budget principles that will protect the common good, value each individual and help lift the burden on the poor. Read The Faithful Budget in its entirety.

Eastern Africa welcomes 16 New Novices:
AOR Provincial Fr. Agbonkhianmeghe Orobator, S.J., has announced the acceptance of new novices to the Gonzaga Gonza Novitiate in Arusha. Countries of origin include: 9 Kenya, 3 Uganda, 2 Tanzania, 1 Ethiopia, 1 South Sudan. (AOR News April 13, 2012)

Immigration News:
USCCB President Cardinal Dolan and Archbishop Gomez, who chairs the Committee on
Migration, sent a letter dated March 22 urging House Speaker John Boehner to “build consensus” on immigration reform.
Lamar Smith, chair of the House Judiciary Committee, chaired hearings on March 28 regarding the new guidelines for immigration detention. The title of the hearing, “Holiday on ICE,” seems to moc the more humane treatment undocumented immigrants should now receive. See Detention Watch Network’s press release (DWN was created by the Catholic Legal Immigration Network in 1997).
The USCCB and several other Christian denominations filed a brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in the case of Arizona vs. United States, supporting the principle that the federal government controls the enactment and implementation of the nation’s immigration laws.
On April 20, PBS’s “Need to Know” program will air a half hour segment on the excessive use of deadly force by Customs and Border Protection.

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March Wisconsin Province Social-International E-news


Kony 2012 Video – Considerations for Reflection:
This now-viral youtube video produced by the group Invisible Children has become the most recent cause célèbre and is most likely attracting wide attention across campuses and parishes (both Jesuit and non-Jesuit). The video launched the “Kony 2012” campaign and seems to employ a threefold strategy: information/education, fund-raising/sales and advocacy. As an informational piece, it surely helps to shine a light on the rebel leader Joseph Kony and his Lord’s Resistance Army’s legacy of violence in N. Uganda and the region. However, the advocacy request promoted in the video (first applauding/cheering and then encouraging sustained U.S. military presence) diverges from the position expressed by Catholic and Jesuit leaders in the affected region. Here are some of their perspectives:

Africa My Africa: Eastern Africa Jesuit Provincial Agbonkhianmeghe E. Orobator, S.J. expresses concern regarding U.S. troop deployment to dismantle the LRA. Rather than military aid, he suggests humanitarian assistance, “sending teachers, doctors, engineers, experts in agriculture and development — not more soldiers, guns, and ammunition.”

Acholi Religious Leaders Peace Initiative: Statement opposing the plan to deploy U.S. military advisors co-signed by the religious leaders of Northern Uganda, including Archbishop John Baptist Odama of Gulu.

Urging Nonviolence in dealing with the Lord’s Resistance Army: Africa Faith and Justice Network analysis (AFJN is a coalition partner with Jesuit Conference).

CRS Take on Kony 2012, part 2: suggests peaceful alternatives and support for poverty focused humanitarian development.

Regarding issues of international advocacy, our way of proceeding considers first and foremost the experience and recommendations of Jesuits and Church leaders living and working in the affecting areas. If members of your university, school or parish are trying to consider how to best interpret the Kony 2012 campaign, please share the resources mentioned above. In addition, the USA Jesuit Conference will soon post a resource page to help groups better understand the fuller context and consider alternative advocacy messages from the views expressed by Invisible Children. Contact John Sealey if you would like periodic updates on this issue or you can monitor the Jesuit Conference page.

Ignatian Solidarity Network News (Human Rights Nomination /// Webinars available)
ISN has been nominated for a people’s choice award by Global Exchange. Click here for Jesuit Conference story. In addition to hosting gatherings and leadership trainings, ISN will begin hosting webinars on topics which may be of interest to its membership. Upcoming webinars will cover: Worker Rights Consortium on March 28 and on March 29 there will be a presentation regarding the upcoming criminal case filed in Spanish Court against 21 former Salvadoran military officers for the 1989 murders of six Jesuit priests, their housekeeper, and her daughter. Details and sign up at ISN webpage.

Korean Jesuit Arrested and Jailed for Peace Action:
The Jesuit Social Apostolate Coordinator for Asia Pacific has dispatched a report written by Fr. Francis Mun-su Park, S.J.
(Korea) who directs the Jesuit Research Center for Advocacy and Solidarity. The preface of the report reads: “Several Korean Jesuits have placed themselves in the caldron of controversy surrounding the construction of a Korean naval base on Jeju Island, a province of South Korea. The controversial issues include whether the base is necessary, whether the planned base would be harmful to Jeju Island (called ‘an island of peace’ and a tourist destination), whether the planned base will heighten military tension in N.E. Asia, whether the national government should beat down local opposition, and whether the construction will destroy irreplaceable environmental treasure. Several Jesuits have been arrested several times for bodily hindering construction work. Brother John Do-hyun Park, S.J. has lived in the village for more than 5 months accompanying the villagers in their opposition to the base.” He was arrested on March 14 and will be held for investigation and trial. Contact John Sealey for the full report with photos. [Note: Author of the report, Fr. Park is originally from the Wisconsin Province but now transcribed to Korea]

Jesuit Conference Advocacy Focus Areas: Every four years, the Jesuit Commission for Social and International Ministries (JCSIM) surveys the USA provinces regarding the advocacy concerns for the Assistancy. This input, taken in consideration with the apostolic frontiers identified by the Society and pending final approval by the Jesuit Conference Board, helps to shape the social and international advocacy focus for the next four years. Please contact John Sealey by March 23 if you are interested in participating in this on-line survey. We hope to get a diverse and representative group of 20 Jesuits and lay colleagues from across various zones of ministry in the province.

Faith Advocates for Jobs will host a national call in 3 p.m. CST on Thursday, March 22. Call-in number is (760) 569-0111 Access code: 1085004#. The call will feature parish congregations based in OH, WI and RI who will share their successful programs and offer suggestions to create similar initiatives. Both the USCCB and Jesuit Conference participate in the work of Faith Advocates for Jobs, an interfaith coalition seeking support for the unemployed and underemployed.

UN World Water Day (March 22): To learn more, click here. You can take a few minutes to consider your own personal water use at the One Drop site. The World Health Organization estimates 2.6 billion people lack safe, reliable and affordable water for their personal and domestic use. Pope Benedict XVI: “the right to food, like the right to water, has an important place within the pursuit of other rights, beginning with the fundamental right to life” (Caritas in Veritate, n. 27).

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