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Mercy e-News
Edition No. 563  |  30 April 2014
Featured Story

Editor: Over 5 days (11-15 May) Elizabeth Davis rsm (Newfoundland) will lead a group of Mercy Sisters at Mercy International Centre in an exploration of the ministry of leadership through the metaphors of beauty, poetry, teaching, healing and sacred word. Sr Elizabeth has held a number of positions of leadership in society, in church and in community and is well qualified to speak out of her own broad experience.

An opportunity to converse with Elizabeth about leadership recently presented itself. It began with the question 'What does the word "leadership" evoke for you'?

Messages to: Elizabeth Davis rsm - Congregational Leader Newfoundland


Image: Elizabeth Davis rsm. Photo: Adele Howard rsm

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Vision in Action

Mercy International Association welcomes the canonisation of Pope John XXIII and Pope John Paul II on Divine Mercy Sunday, 27 April 2014.

Together with the whole Church we join in prayer of thanks for the gifts and examples the lives of these two Popes have offered to the Church and to the World.

Messages to: Mary Reynolds rsm - Executive Director MIA

Image: The Vatican Today

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MIA Intention for the Coming Week

For all who are called to leadership:

Gracious God, your Son Jesus Christ is the head of every ruler and authority. In him we have an example of compassionate leadership and merciful service. Help us and our leaders to follow his example in all things.
We make this prayer with confidence in your constant care for us.

Source: Intercessions of Mercy
ed Joy Clough rsm, p325

Messages to: Mary Reynolds rsm - Executive Director MIA

Editor: This week we publish a fourth of the Australian presentations given by Mary Reynolds rsm. In this presentation Sr Mary  discusses Catherine's life and ministry through six different "lenses"

'We can look at Catherine’s life & Ministry in the following ways:
Focus of her Life & Ministry: Passion for Christ and passion for Humanity
Soul of her Life & Ministry:  Reflective Living
Style of her Life & Ministry: Empowering and Participative
Heart of her Life & Ministry: Relationships
Tools of her Life & Ministry: Communication and connection
Difficulties in her Life & Ministry: Conflict and Loss
Supports in her Life & Ministry: Friendship and Humour...'

Messages to: Mary Reynolds rsm - Executive Director MIA

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As a Mercy community we pray with those in need of prayer. We especially pray this week with the intercession of Catherine McAuley for those whose names are newly added to our prayer list: Anon (for knee surgery), Mary Singelin-zeppelin, Diana Kidd and Mary Jo Vasquez & also for Barb, Cathy, Stephanie, Joyce & Faye & Schuyler and all who have asked for prayers.

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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Editor: In 1998 at the request of the MIA Members (Leaders) a Communications Consultative Group (CCG) was established with members who had expertise in communication nominated from the various regions. Lynn Dugas-Burke and Jan Hayes rsm (Americas), Margaret Twomey rsm (The Congregation) and Adele Howard rsm (Australia), Co-ordinator, formed the first group with guidance from Doris Gottemoeller rsm (President of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, Chair Member MIA).

The decision to develop a plan to facilitate communication recognised the MIA Members' relationships with each other: 'MIA is based on mutual trust which is built up by effective communication'.

Messages to:

Adele Howard rsm - MIA Communications Co-ordinator
Mary Reynolds rsm - MIA Executive Director

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'Given our Mercy history of autonomous congregations, it was a great blessing that at the time that MIA came into existence there was an explosion of information technology that opened doors our founding members never dreamed of', writes Ethel Bignell rsm, formerly MIA Administrator.

In the article linked to this item Mary Conway rsm, Ethel Bignell rsm and Denise Fox rsm share their reflections on their experiences as part of MIACOM - Mercy International Association Communications.

Messages to:
Mary Conway rsm
Denise Fox rsm
Ethel Bignell rsm

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MIA Members News

The Sisters of Mercy have been responding to human rights abuses in Honduras, a country in which they live and minister, ever since a coup in that country in June 2009.

An article by Jean Stokan, director of the Institute Justice Team, on Mercy’s presence in Honduras and the reality of violence engulfing that country, has been published in Sojourners online and is linked to this item.

Messages to: Jean Stokan

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With tomato and pepper plants in hand, Mercy Northwest Arkansas co-workers and Cooper Elementary students celebrated  Earth Day with the official first planting of the Bella Vista Community Garden.

Financed by a $40,000 grant from the General Mills Foundation, the garden is located at Mercy Clinic Bella Vista, just across the street from the school. The garden will be filled with an assortment of vegetables and will serve as an outdoor classroom with hands-on learning opportunities. Teachers plan to integrate curriculum with garden activities like tending and harvesting fruits and vegetables.

Messages to: Jessica Eldred - Media Contact

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The April 2014 issue of Te Kete Atawhai (Mercy Basket) linked to this item contains plenty of good reading including:

  • Irish pilgrims make connection with NZ Mercy founding sister
  • Mercy celebrates 50 years in Tonga - Christchurch celebrations
  • Excellence status a world-first for Mercy facility
  • What Baggot Street holds for Mercy pilgrims

And much more...

Messages to: Katrina Fabish rsm - Congregation Leadership Team

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Again this year, while many college students spent spring break enjoying a needed rest, a group of Mount Aloysius students traveled to South America, visiting Guyana for a service trip.  The impact of the experience was significant all around—for the residents of Guyana touched by the Mount Aloysius students and for the students and staff too...

The country is a frequent mission destination for the students and staff of Mount Aloysius College.  The Sisters of Mercy sponsor several works and institutions in the country.

Messages to: Helen Marie Burns rsm - vice president of mission integration

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Mercy Matters

Adblock works to remove ads from the sidelines and popups. It is available for Firefox, Chrome, Opera, Android and Internet Explorer. If you are annoyed by the ads that appear when you are eg watching YouTube videos, then this free service is worth checking out.

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... fostering wellness, resilience and connection ...

Mercy Community Services (MCS), a not-for-profit ministry of the Sisters of Mercy, is committed to supporting and empowering individuals and families in need in the Greater Rochester community to take control of their own lives and wellbeing.

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1867: Foundation to Ballyshannon from Kinsale - M Ignatius Joseph McCarthy

1917: Death of M Regis Murray, Foundress of Reefton

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'May the Holy Spirit take possession of your heart and lead you to complete union.'

-Patricia O'Neill rsm

Source: Mercy Through the Years Calendar

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Spiritual Leadership for Challenging Times

Mercy's contribution to this publication of 10 addresses from the 48 women who have generously served as presidents of LCWR is quite significant. Rita Parks rsm created the introductions to each of the addresses that note the significant world and ecclesial events of that time. Theresa Kane's 1980 address 'To Speak the Truth in Love' and Doris Gottemoeller's 1994 address 'Befriending the Wind' are both included in this publication which can be purchased online from the publishers (Orbis) or from Amazon.

A reflection and discussion guide to assist readers in applying understandings of spiritual leadership to their own lives and work can be downloaded here from the LCWR site (7 pps; PDF)

' One of the most important distinctions I have learned as I live out my life as a Sister of Mercy is the difference between optimism and hope. Optimism is the belief that things will get better. Hope is the faith that, together, we can make things better. Optimism is a passive virtue; hope is an active virtue. When connected to Mercy, hope gets things done!

Deirdre Mullan rsm, The Many Faces of Mercy (2012)

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Further Resources

Worth Knowing:

The Church of Mercy by Pope Francis was published on Easter Sunday. The book is a collection from Pope Francis’s speeches, homilies, and papers presented during the first year of his papacy. Published by Loyola Press. Editions: kindle, hardback, paperback. Purchase from Amazon

Worth Watching:

The Church and World Program at Georgetown University's Berkley Center organised a major symposium on Evangelii Gaudium on Friday, 28 March 2014. The symposium  A New Vision for the Church: Pope Francis’ Agenda for the Church, World, and Social Justice was filmed and is now online. Among the participants was Maryanne Loughry AM, rsm (ISMAPNG) who was a panellist in the session The Global Vision of Evangelii Gaudium. View the Symposium

Remember the Girl. 'I believe that by sharing one powerful story you can not only turn negativity into positivity, but you can also ignite a movement around empowerment,' says MIchelle Phan, an American make-up demonstrator and entrepreneur who became notable as a YouTube celebrity, and who features in this campaign to support survivors of trafficking in human persons. Watch it here (03:15).
Visit the website here

Worth a Look:

The Sisters of Bon Secours, based in Marriottsville, Maryland, have launched a unique website, www.LifeAsASister.org. 'Imagine a Sister's Life' allows website visitors to imagine what it's like to be a woman religious and to discover if this could be their life's call.

Global Sisters Report is a project of NCR funded by the Conrad N Hilton Foundation. Read about it here. The website was launched last Thursday (24/4). Visit the site here

Worth a Listen:

Todonyang is in a remote part of northern Kenya close to the border with Ethiopia. When children at the local school saw a video of Every Breath you Take by the Police they decided to do their own version.

Todonyang School was set up by Father Steven Ochieng  to help reduce the cross border conflicts between the people on the Kenyan and Ethiopian sides of the border. The school is the first to accept students from both communities. Watch it here. (01:09) DOn't miss the very able conductor.

Worth Reading:

Trafficking in human persons

A new Council of Europe report confirms that trafficking for labour exploitation is a growing threat to human rights in Europe. Read the Report here (pps 16-18)

Modern-day slavery can be eradicated from multinational supply chains, but only if global businesses contribute to greater transparency and collaboration, according to new recommendations by Sedex Global and Verite. Read the article

A year after the collapse of the Rana Plaza clothing factory that killed 1,133 people, there are accords and mechanisms for making factories but Western retailers aren’t doing enough, and garment workers are still dying, reports Liza Jansen. Read the article here

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

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Today, Sisters of Mercy, through Mercy International Association, use their resources to respond to issues of global
								poverty demonstrated in the massive displacement of persons worldwide.
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Directors: Sister Denise Fox (ANZ), Sister Patricia McDermott (US), Ron Ashworth (US), Peter Burnett (GB), Sister Margaret Casey (IRL), James Peppiatt-Combes (US) and Sister Denise Fox (ANZ)