Newsletter - Solidarity with Christ Crucified: Care of the Earth
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Solidarity with Christ Crucified: Care of the Earth. 

The Catholic Climate Covenant and Creighton University are cosponsoring an important initiative, Laudato Si' and the U.S. Catholic Church: A Conference Series on Our Common Home." The gathering will be held June 27-29, 2019 at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska. It will bring together current and potential U.S. Catholic leaders to convene, equip, and inspire them to more deeply integrate Laudato Si' and its climate change teaching into eight "tracks" of U.S. Catholic life: Adult Faith Formation; Advocacy; Creation Care Teams in Parishes, Schools, and Religious Orders; Energy Management; Higher Education; Liturgy; School Education; and Young Adult Ministry. The application deadline is April 1 but numbers are limited.  Learn about the event, view the schedule and roster of speakers, and apply here.

Exploring the Intersection of Faith and Environmental Justice

The Earth Institute at Columbia University has a long-standing interest in the connections between faith and the environment. Hussein Rashid is a theologian, Columbia University graduate, adjunct professor of religion at the New School, and founder of Islamicate, a consultancy based in NYC. In an interview with Rachel Kirk and Meredith Smith, he talks about his own religious life and the challenges and possibilities he sees in environmental justice work today.  He convened an interfaith conversation and reading group around Laudato Si’, the Papal encyclical calling for environmental stewardship from a Catholic perspective. More recently, Rashid has become increasingly involved in environmental justice, speaking and working with Alliance for Fair Food, on World Water Day, and other initiatives.

Read interview and sign up for the Columbia University Earth Institute email list.

Image Josh Berer 

Dangers for arms race rise with demise of historic nuclear treaty

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has moved the "Doomsday Clock" 30 seconds closer to midnight, largely due to the Trump administration's Nuclear Posture Review. This policy plans violates the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, to which the United States is a party. This treaty requires parties “to pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to the cessation of the nuclear arms race at an early date and to nuclear disarmament.” 

Catholic Responses:  In a statement released by the USCCB on February 5, Archbishop Broglio, who represents the Archdiocese for the Military Services of the United States, highlighted the important function the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty has played in regulating the spread of nuclear arms in recent decades. “I regret to learn of the U.S. government’s intention to withdraw from the INF Treaty that has served for over thirty years to reduce nuclear arsenals between the U.S. and Russia significantly."  He added, "coupled with the news of the Russian reaction to this decision I am concerned for the potential of a new arms race created by these decisions.” 

In addition,  Pax Christi International released a denunciation of the treaty withdrawal.

Bank Campaign moves JP Chase away from Private Prisons

The Conference of Major Superiors (CMSM) and its corporate accountability partners have worked diligently to stop the funding of private prisons in the United States.  In a major development, JP Morgan Chase announced it is finally deciding to no longer finance private prisons such as GEO and CoreCivic, which profit from the detention of our immigrant sisters and brothers. 

CMSM took the lead in generating the interfaith immigration bank boycott and over the past year joined the Families Belong Together campaign focused on JP Morgan Chase and Wells Fargo. There is hope that Wells Fargo follows suit and our immigrant sisters and brothers are cared for as sacred human beings. To help amplify this pressure on Wells Fargo, you can retweet the message here and use @wellsfargo, #familiesbelongtogether for further social media actions.

A Selection of Resources

Passionist Lent Reflection Videos: 
Holy Cross and St. Paul of the Cross Provinces are again collaborating on daily reflection videos to help you on your Lenten journey. Our spiritual guides for this year are Fr. Jack Conley, CP, who has served as pastor, campus minister, vocations director and preacher of retreats for parishes, clergy and religious, and Fr. Richard Burke, CP, local superior of Saint Ann's Passionist Monastery and Basilica in Scrantion, PA, and Director of the Passionist Lay Associates. Visit our website each day for their inspirational messages.

Reflection - What might you do to change this world?

When the climate changes—
whether political or environmental—
as it is wont to do,

and we are powerless to affect it, 
we can 
sink our roots deeper;

deeper than fire and flood;
deeper than drought and despair;
deeper than fear and fury;

beyond and below the reach 
of trends, tempests and 
even traumas.

When the wind shifts—
whether social, cultural or religious— 
as it is prone to do,

and we cannot redirect it,
we can 
reset our sails.

Read the rest of Joe Grant's reflection here.

Inspiring Video Resources:
Resurgence & Ecologist magazine has published a series of short films featuring renowned environmental and peace activist Satish Kumar. The series, Change the Story, showcases Satish's philosophy and remarkable insights on caring for the environment (soil), cultivating personal wellbeing (soul) and upholding human values (society). The full series of 31 films, each no longer than 2 minutes, can be viewed on the Resurgence Vimeo channel.

In May 1968, Christian mystic Thomas Merton undertook a pilgrimage to the American West. Fifty years later, filmmaker Jeremy Seifert and writer Fred Bahnson set out to follow Merton’s path, retracing the monk’s journey across the landscape. Amid stunning backdrops of ocean, redwood, and canyon, the film features the faces and voices of people Merton encountered. The essay offers a more intimate meditation on Merton’s life and the relevance of the spiritual journey today. Watch the full film and read the essay here:

Image:  Northern California, May 1968. Photo by Thomas Merton

Linking Justice and Peace in the Lectionary

JPIC homily resources are available from the Conference of Major Superiors of Men (CMSM) and other religious communities. The Passionist JPIC office collaborates with other community JPIC offices and we would love to see other homily resources coming from the Passionist charism. Contact the Passionist JPIC office if you would like to contribute.  If you yourself do not give homilies 

Additional homily resources from the Ignatian Solidarity Network

The Holy Cross Passionist website features wonderful daily scripture reflections from the Passionist Family.  Three regular contributors are members of the North American Passionists JPIC Board. 

The Catholic Climate Covenant has homily helps incorporating Ladauto Si as well as weekly tip bulletin inserts (including Spanish).  
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