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Mercy e-News
Edition No. 549  |  22 January 2014
Featured Story

This year, 2014, is a special milestone in the story of Mercy International Association, marking as it does the 20th Anniversary of the opening of Mercy International Centre. But why celebrate an Anniversary? Søren Kierkegaard, the Danish philosopher and theologian, says that life can only be understood backwards but it must be lived forward. There is so much truth in his observation. An exploration of our history can reveal the wisdom, hope, openness to risk that was not clearly evident at the time but shaped a chapter of our life in a profound way.

However, this is not about living life through the rear view mirror, but of holding a consciousness of our story that inspires and energises us to faithfully live the original vision and values in the present and commit to the future with equal hope and openness to risk.

Over the year, we will retell the story of Mercy International Association and in so doing rejoice in the providential guidance of God, honour the courageous women whose faith and courage enabled them to lead through times of transition and recognise that we stand on the shoulders of the many who generously ran the Association and the Centre over the past twenty years...

Messages to: Mary Reynolds rsm - Executive Director MIA

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Vision in Action

As we commence the 20th celebration year, we are reminded of the key events in date order of Mercy International Association Outreach. This week we look over the first ten years (1994-2004).

Messages to: Mary Reynolds rsm - Executive Director MIA

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Welcome to this first issue of the new look Mercy E-news of 2014.

To mark the occasion of MIA's 20th Anniversary, both the homepage design of the mercyworld.org website and the Mercy E-news template have been refreshed, their ongoing evolution reflecting our continuous effort to better express online the messages Mercy needs to convey...

Messages to: Anne Walsh - Mercy E-News Editor

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Do you know that Mercy International Association is seeking to raise 20 million euro by 21 December 2015 to support the House of Mercy in Dublin, Ireland, as well as the Works of Mercy around the world?

Mary Waskowiak rsm invites us into the ministry of fundraising to support the vision of Mercy and to continue the legacy of Catherine McAuley.

Messages to: Mary Waskowiak rsm - MIA Director Fundraising-Development

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Today the Geneva II Middle East peace conference (Geneva II) is being held. It is aimed at ending the Syrian civil war by bringing together the Syrian regime and the Syrian opposition to discuss a transitional government for Syria with full executive powers.

MIA joins with the people of Syria and people throughout the world in praying for the success of this peace conference.

Messages to: Mary Reynolds rsm - Executive Director MIA

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Prayers with the intercession of Venerable Catherine McAuley are asked for all whose names are in our hearts and on our prayer list.

Messages to:
Anne Hannon rsm - Vice postulator Europe and Africa
Sheila Carney rsm - Vice postulator Americas
Caroline Ryan rsm - Vice postulator Australia & PNG, Aotearoa New Zealand, Philippines

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Mercy International Centre has undergone a facelift in time for the 20th anniversary celebrations. Early in November 2013 work began to repair the facades facing Baggot Street and Herbert Street...

Messages to: Sylvia Williams rsm - Assistant Director Finance & Admin

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MIA Members News

In 1992, Dr. Jim Withers, an internal medicine physician, began providing medical care to Pittsburgh’s unsheltered homeless population. He partnered with street-savvy formerly homeless individuals and, initially dressing as a homeless person, began to make nighttime street rounds in the alleys and under the bridges of the city.  He estimates that his team has treated about 10,000 people in Pittsburgh alone and provided 900 with housing.

Be inspired by this account of his story.

Messages to: Dr Jim Withers

Editor: Operation Safety Net is this week's featured website

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On 17 December 1963, the Sisters of Mercy moved patients to the current site of Mercy Hospital St. Louis. 50 years to the day later this video was posted on YouTube. Hear the stories from some of the Sisters and doctors who helped during the move. Wonderfully illustrated with photos from the time, this video will be particularly appreciated by all who've worked in or continue to work in Mercy health care (video 14:15).

Messages to: Nancy Corbett - Director of Newsmaking

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In her regular NCR (National Catholic Reporter) Column, Camille D'Arienzo rsm talks with Dr Karen Schneider rsm about how Karen came to be taking medical teams - with the support of Mercy Sisters - into Guyana, Haiti, Kenya and Nigeria to address local needs, and what she has learned from these experiences of the past 12 years.

Messages to: Karen Schneider rsm

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The second MECPATH (Mercy-End Child Prostitution and Trafficking in Hospitality Sector) training day took place on 8 January with the Mercy Sister Volunteers preparing to promote the campaign in hotels in their provinces. 

Messages to:
Denise Boyle fmdm - Campaign Manager
Mary Ryan rsm - Campaign Coordinator

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Mercy Matters

Veronica Lawson rsm (ISMAPNG) is a biblical scholar who writes from an eco-feminist perspective. Her weekly reflections on the Sunday Gospels are widely reproduced; we are delighted to publish them on mercyworld.org in 2014 and beyond.

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Mercy bestows benefits, receives us anew, and pardons again and again. M.C.McAuley
Source: Mercy Through the Years Calendar

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A thought-provoking video reflection on all the days of our lives. Can be used alone or with a group (02:45).

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1984: Foundation to Bridgewater, Tasmania from Rosanna, Victoria

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Kerry Weber is a Mercy Associate and the Managing Editor of America magazine. Kerry's article 'Working at Mercy' in which she reflected on Pope Francis' use of the term 'mercy-ing' was referenced in Mercy E-News Issue 535 (09 October 2013). In 'Mercy in the City' Kerry sets out to see if a young professional living in New York City can practice the Corporal Works of Mercy in an authentic and meaningful manner amid the many pressures of day-to-day life.

Listen to Kerry talk about her Mercy charism experience and her book  (19:14)
Watch a video interview (06:05)

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Operation Safety Net, part of the Pittsburgh Mercy Health System and Catholic Health East, sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, touches the lives of hundreds of men and women living on the streets in Pittsburgh annually by providing them with access to health care, hope, and dignity.

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Further Resources

Worth Knowing:

President Obama has declared January 2014  National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month. Sisters of Mercy continue Catherine McAuley's ministry of outreach with distressed women today by opposing Human Trafficking. Read more

Worth Reading:

Catholic Mission and Catholic Religious Australia's Mission Network have combined to produce 'The Francis Effect: Living the Joy of the Gospel', bringing together 12 Australian leaders from various Catholic ministries to offer their individual insight in response to Pope Francis' Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium The Joy of the Gospel. Foreward by Stevan Bevans SVD. Read the book online at no cost or purchase it for AUD$15.00

In 2013 we followed the story of Malala Yousafzai, celebrating her strength, her convictions and her accomplishments. Now meet Dasani, a homeless girl living in poverty with her family in New York. Her circumstances are different from those of Malala, but in her own way she, too, is remarkable. Dasani's story was told last month in the five part New York Times series 'Invisible Child. Girl in the Shadows: Dasani's homeless life.' Read it here

Worth Purchasing:

Each year the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) produces an affordable reflective print resource for our spiritual journey. Pre-paid orders for this year's book 'Praying in These Emergent Times' need to be lodged by 28 February. This 56 page paperback is offered at US$5.00 (plus shipping), and discounted rates are available for ordering in bulk. Find out more details of this year's theme and order your copies online.

Worth Watching:

Yale 2013 Chubb Lecture with Wendell Berry, poet, novelist, philosopher, environmental activist, cultural critic, and farmer, recorded 7 December 2013 at Yale. Watch it here (1:23:58)

Send your contributions for the "Worth..." section to: the Editor

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Mercy International Association Limited
Registered in Ireland.
Certificate Number 194263. Public Company Limited by Guarantee. Registered Office: Mercy International Association, 11 Adelaide Road, Dublin 2. Registered Charity no CHY 10078
Directors: Sister Denise Fox (ANZ), Sister Patricia McDermott (US), Ron Ashworth (US), Peter Burnett (GB), Sister Colette Cronin (GB), Mary Moorhead (IRL), Kevin Hoy (IRL), Sister Margaret Casey (IRL), Sister Scholasticah Nganda (IRL)