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Mercy e-News
Edition No. 646  |  04 November 2015
Featured Story

Editor: Áine O'Connor rsm (Americas), Bridget Crisp rsm (Aotearoa New Zealand), Mary Tinney rsm (ISMAPNG) and Marianne Comfort (Americas Institute Justice Team) will represent global Mercy at COP21: the UN Climate Change Conference / Conferencia de las Naciones Unidas sobre el Cambio Climatico being held in Paris from 30 November to 11 December. Mercy's particular focus will be on raising human rights and environmental concerns regarding hydraulic fracturing (fracking). Mercy will co-host two side events during the climate summit highlighting the International Movement to Ban Fracking.

Sisters of Mercy and partners-in-Mercy are invited to pray the prayer for the earthOración por nuestra Tierra from Laudato Si' for a successful outcome of this conference which commences during our preparation period for the Mercy International Reflection Process and the Year of Mercy. 

Each of the 12 Mercy Congregations and Institutes has been invited to take responsibility for their Sisters and partners-in-Mercy praying the prayer on one of the 12 days of the conference. Each one of us is, of course, welcome to pray the prayer each day.

Download the roster and prayer here:

English: [A4 Paper Size] ; [US Letter Size]
Spanish: [A4 Paper Size]; [US Letter Size]

Messages to:
Mary Reynolds rsm - Executive Director MIA
Áine O'Connor rsm - MGA Coordinator at the UN


Image: Mercy on 'The Road to Paris'. © MIA. Any Mercy community or ministry wishing to use this image in their own publications in the lead up to and during COP21 is most welcome to do so. Guidelines are here

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Vision in Action

Prayers are asked by Berneice Loch rsm (Institute Leader ISMAPNG) for the Bender family, as well as the people of Chinchilla, west-northwest of Brisbane, Queensland, who have been working tirelessly for the protection of the land, water, air and community health. Recently George Bender took his own life, seemingly no longer able to cope with the unrelenting burden which the Coal Seam Gas (CSG) industry had imposed upon him. For some time, CSG companies sought to gain access to George’s land and he had fought a courageous and tireless campaign to keep them off his property. A visit to the region organised by the Sisters of Mercy coincided with this tragedy.

Messages to: Mary Reynolds rsm - Executive Director MIA

Post your own Prayer or Reflection in our online Chapel


Image: hydraulic fracturing (fracking) drilling rig

Reminder: Logos Now Available

The following are available to Mercy Congregations and Institutes, ministries and communities:

To find out how to obtain a logo or the photo, click on the appropriate link or email Anne Walsh.

Messages to: Anne Walsh - Mercy eNews Editor

Final Reminder: Invitation to Celebrate Remembrance Day at Baggot Street

Eucharist will be celebrated at 12.00 p.m on the Anniversary of Catherine’s death, Wednesday 11 November, followed by lunch.

Street parking only. Some accommodation is available.

RSVP is essential by/on Friday 6th November to: receptionist@mercyinternational.ie using the subject line ‘Mass/lunch Nov 11’ or ring 01 6618061 in business hours.

Download the invitation here (PDF)

God of love and mercy, touch with your healing power and restore to full health Mary Drake and all whose names are on our prayer list.

We ask this with confidence through the intercession of Venerable Catherine McAuley. Amen.

Messages to: the Vice postulators

MIA Reflection Process
Calendar of Key Dates & Events in the Mercy International Reflection Process Now Available

The professionally designed calendar in English and Spanish is now available in PDF for download and sharing.

We invite you to pin it on noticeboards, leave copies on community room tables, include it in local mail outs, post it on your websites and social media and to email it on to Sisters and partners-in-Mercy... to use all communication channels available to you to help ensure that all members of the Mercy network have access to this important information.

Download the calendar here:
English: [A4 Paper Size]; [US Letter Size]
[A4 Paper Size]; [US Letter Size]

Messages to: Mercy International Reflection Process Team

In this preparation period for engaging in the Mercy International Reflection Process using Laudato Si', helpful resources for breaking open the text of the encyclical are continuing to be added to the microsite as these become known or available. The newest resources are being identified with a 'new' icon to assist readers to locate these easily among the full list.

Most recently added are:

  • 'Laudato Si' - On Care for Our Common Home'. Module of Six Sessions designed for Group Work by Denise Boyle fmdm, Mercy Global Action. Download here (14pps; PDF)
  • An audio recording (female voice) of a reading of the Encyclical can be downloaded in mp3 files from the Village doings website. The recording can be downloaded as 8 mp3 files or in one 56mb file.
  • Animations from CAFOD designed for Young People (04:55) and for children (04:08)

Messages to: Mercy International Reflection Process Team

MIA Members News

In this tenth part in the series Elaine Wainwright rsm remembers the story in Mark 14:3-9 of the woman who pours costly perfumed ointment on Jesus’ head while he is in Simon’s house.

'November is a time of remembering and particularly remembering those who are our ancestors in the gospel/good news, especially those with whom we are intimately interconnected', writes Sr Elaine.

Download the November article here (PDF)

The February - October articles are linked to this article.

The December article will complete this series. With the December article we will also publish a PDF of the series for those who may wish to have all the articles in one file.

Messages to: Elaine Wainwright rsm

Visit and enjoy the new Tui Motu website

Prayer Services: Resources for 11 November Remembrance Day (Americas)

Editor: There are two prayer services available for use on 11 November, the anniversary of the death of Catherine McAuley. These have been prepared in previous years by the Spiritual Life Committee of the Mid-Atlantic Community.

Download the prayer services here (7pps; PDF)

Messages to: Marie Ann Ellmer rsm - Chair Mid-Atlantic Community Spiritual Life Committee

Wisdom Circles to Engage in Mercy International Reflection Process (Newfoundland)

Within our Congregation, we have four Wisdom Circles.  These Wisdom Circles share in a particular way in the ministry of leadership within the Congregation.  They work with the Leadership Team to enable the Congregation to live out the Statement of the 20th General Chapter (2013).  The mandates of the four Wisdom Circles flow from the Chapter Directions: Comprehensive Legacy Planning, Formation in the New Cosmology, Advocacy and Right Relationship within Our Church.  The members of the Wisdom Circles intentionally approach their ministry of leadership through theological reflection. The membership of each circles consist of six to eight persons including sisters, colleagues, associates and a member of the Leadership Team.  This gathering had two purposes: looking back at the work of the past two years, and looking forward to the next two years.  We are inviting them to take the next year to participate in the reflection process.  All have agreed to participate and all have agreed that they will add other participants to their group, e.g., the fourth Wisdom Circle will add leaders of other faith traditions (Christian and others) to their numbers to do the process.

At the beginning of the gathering, Elizabeth Davis rsm welcomed the members.  I am attaching her words (PDF) because they give you a sense of how we are presenting this reflection process for our partners-in-Mercy.

Messages to Elizabeth Marrie rsm - Coordinator of the Reflection Process

Keeping Hope Alive (ISMAPNG & Brisbane Congregation)

An initiative of the Director of Mission and Staff of Trinity Catholic College Lismore NSW, enabled six  Year 11 students to travel to Brisbane, Queensland to be immersed in the lives of asylum seekers and refugees at The Romero Centre at Dutton Park, a ministry of hospitality and welcome, sponsored by the Brisbane Sisters of Mercy, through Mercy Community Services.

During this life changing experience, the students met with Romero staff and volunteers and heard from Tamils and Afghans who suffered greatly during and post-conflict.

In the sharing of stories, the students were immersed in the decisions asylum seekers made as they made their way to Australia. It helped to understand the decisions asylum seekers made while travelling to seek protection and the traumas suffered from the situations they have fled.

Read the report of this immersion experience here (4pps; PDF)

Messages to: Denise Laverty rsm

Mercy Matters

Starting the weekend of 28 November, people everywhere are coming together for two weeks of action calling for climate justice and an end to carbon pollution. There are going to be thousands of events around the world culminating in a mass mobilisation in Paris on 12 December.

Join the global movement for climate justice -- find an event near you.

Details of events in Oceania, Africa, Americas, East Asia and Europe are on this website, developed by 350.org, partnering with MIA on side events at COP21

The site is available in 9 languages including English and Spanish

'The new climate agreement, to be negotiated at the Conference of Parties in Paris (COP21/CMP11) will frame the future of our lives on this planet. It will shape how we plant and harvest our food; how we build our cities and transport networks; how we power our homes and our industries. The inescapable reality is that this agreement is about people; our daily lives and our livelihoods. It is about the opportunity for all members of the human family to live lives of dignity and equal rights. Therefore, logic dictates that the agreement should be grounded in human right norms, including gender equality. As the world moves to take action on climate change, we must ensure that in saving the planet we don't trample on the rights of people made vulnerable by poverty or social standing.”

-Mary Robinson, 'What Is the New Climate Change Agreement For, If Not People's Rights?', 20 October 2015

We have partnered with the Global Catholic Climate Movement to raise awareness about the climate change crisis.

With less than a month to COP21, show your support for Pope Francis' ecological call and join over 150,000 Catholics who have signed the Global Catholic Climate Petition.

To make it easy for you to sign if you haven't already, at GCCM's invitation we've embedded the petition on our mercyworld.org website.

COP21: what's that?

A 9 page magazine has been produced by the COP 21 organisers to improve our knowledge about COP21

Download the magazine or any of the posters in English


1874: Foundation to Mudgee from Bathurst, New South Wales - M Joseph Murphy
1915: Opening of Mater Hospital, Rockhampton, Queensland

Post a fact about the Story of the Sisters of Mercy for our online archive

'Catherine’s compassionate response was immediate, practical …enabling the poor to help themselves and to find new dignity.'

-Carmel Bourke rsm

Further Resources

Worth Playing:

Sons of Korah is an Australian based band devoted to giving a fresh voice to the biblical psalms. Watch/listen to their version of Psalm 19 here on Youtube in a video reflection or as a recorded live performance on their website home page (03:41). Music can be digitally downloaded from their site

Worth Reading:

Human Trafficking
Pope Francis message to the Santa Marta Group (a global alliance of international police chiefs and bishops working together with civil society to eradicate human trafficking) which has been meeting in Spain that 'Combating human trafficking is moral imperative' can be read here

UK's New Reporting Obligations on Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking. This article in the US National Law Review  includes a link to the UK guidance document which was issued on 29 October 2015 when the reporting requirement came into effect. Read the article and access the guide (46pps; PDF) here

For those wanting background to the COP21 conference, ENSIA online (Institute on the Environment, Uni of Minnesota) has recently completed publishing their series of context pieces, which can be accessed from the links below:

Worth Knowing:

Making Human Rights Work for People Living in Extreme Poverty

On this year’s International Day of Peace on 21 September, Franciscans International (FI) and ATD Fourth World launched at the UN in Geneva a 60 page Handbook on Making Human Rights Work for People Living in Extreme Poverty, and unveiled the accompanying video Extreme Poverty: Standing Up For Rights, that illustrates the types of situations in which the handbook can be used (10.00).

The Bottom Line:

'We are calling this year, 2015, a year for global action, a once-in-a-generation opportunity to put our world and people on a more peaceful, sustainable and equitable footing...

We are the first generation that can put an end to poverty and we are the last generation that can put an end to climate change, so we [must] address climate change.'

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Send suggestions and contributions for the 'Worth...' section 2015 to: the Editor

Mercy World E-News is the Online Newsletter of the Mercy International Association. We hope you value this email. However, should you no longer wish to receive this eNewsletter, please unsubscribe.

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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)