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Mercy e-News
Edition No. 666  |  13 April 2016
Featured Story

Editor:  In this Year of Mercy we have all been asked by Pope Francis to 'open our eyes...see the misery of ...our brothers and sisters and...recognize that we are compelled to heed their cry for help' (MV 15).

'After learning that hunger kills more people annually than malaria, tuberculosis, and AIDS combined, I decided to act,'  says Megan Fabian, Mt Mercy Academy New York senior student on her online fundraising website on GoFundMe. She has joined the 'Stop Hunger Now' campaign, an organisation driven by a vision of a world without hunger in our lifetime, which works with volunteers like Meagan who raise funds to package dehydrated, high protein and highly nutritious meals for vulnerable people the world over.

Megan has achieved her fundraising goal of $US3,000 to package 10,000 meals costing 29 cents each. She has the support of her school community; 50 student volunteers from the Senior class and others will be packing the meals with her on 2 May.

Megan believes that we can change the world. She knows she can't do it alone. If you are in a position to assist Megan to exceed her target, you can donate here.

Messages to: Megan Fabian c/- Margaret Staszak - Principal, Mt Mercy Academy Buffalo, New York
 

Image: Megan Fabian.Used with permission of Mt Mercy Academy

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Vision in Action
MIA Prayer Intention for the Coming Week: Peace on Earth

On Monday this week (11 April) we marked the 53rd anniversary of the release of John XX111's landmark encyclical Pacem in Terris (Peace on Earth) . Written in the midst of the nuclear arms race and the Cold War, this was the first papal encyclical addressed not only to the Catholic faithful, but also to all women and men of good will.

 'But has today’s world learned any lessons from Pacem in Terris? Are the words "justice and solidarity" found “solely in our dictionary or are we all working to realize them?' (Pope Francis, 2013)

67 countries and 698 Militias-guerrillas and separatist groups are currently engaged in civil unrest and armed conflicts according to the Wars in the World website. These groups include Boko Haram who kidnapped 276 schoolgirls (Bring Back Our Girls), two years ago tomorrow (14 April), of whom 200 remain missing.

Let our prayers be for peace and safety for all people.

Post your own Prayer or Reflection in our online Chapel

Messages to: Mary Reynolds rsm - Executive Director MIA

International Earth Day, observed in many countries as Mother Earth Day, is celebrated annually on 22 April. This year the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has invited all world leaders, ie 196 parties to the historic Paris Agreement in December 2015, to a signing ceremony on Earth day. The signing event will take place at UN Headquarters in New York on the first day the agreement will be open for signature.

In his invitation letter, the Secretary-General said that leaders’ participation could also facilitate the early entry into force of the Paris Agreement and provides a solid foundation for the low-carbon, climate-resilient transformation of the global economy. He added: 'This transformation will help secure a future that is safer, healthier and more prosperous for all.'...

Messages to: Catherine Gibbons rsm - Staff, Mercy Global Action

Editor: In celebration of Earth Day we will be publishing Mary C Sullivan's article 'Catherine McAuley and Earth: Catalina McAuley y Nuestra Tierra' in Mercy eNews next Wednesday, 20 April.

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MIA Reflection Process
Meet the Members of the Berwachain Group (GB Institute)

Eight Sisters of Mercy from Bermondsey and Wanstead have formed the Berwachain group, the name an amalgam of their communities. Their broad area of interest is human trafficking, planning to raise awareness of Human Trafficking through prayer, study and action.

Research is underway on activity in the local area and preparing questions to put to the local MP.

Messages to: Josephine Davies rsm - MIRP Coordinator GB Institute

Image: (L-R Seated) Srs Catherine Quane, Anna O’Toole, Catherine Heron, Mary Horan.
(L-R Standing) Srs Nicole Keenan, Monica Sheehy, Agatha Collopy, Elizabeth Wright

Meet the Mercy Community Services SEQ MIRP Group (Brisbane Congregation)

Mercy Community Services SEQ (South East Queensland) is a ministry of the Brisbane Sisters of Mercy which includes Mercy Aged Care services, Mercy Family Services and Mercy Disability Services. This ministry aims to support and empower those who are poor, vulnerable, marginalised or in a position of disadvantage.

Pictured here are the admin team and the Executive Leadership at their first session of the Mercy Reflection Process. Writes Lisa Eastment, General Manager (the lady in red), 'The group will meet again in April and at this next meeting  we will continue discernment of our focus topic'. 

Messages to: Sandra Lupi rsm - MIRP Coordinator Brisbane Congregation

Meet Members of the Burlingame MIRP Group (Americas)

We had our meeting on Sunday, 20 March. We had about an hour and a half discussion to come to the focus on Water: we see all issues merging, focus both on local and international,and there is a strong interest in coming to some action(s). We look forward to hearing globally and the mutual influence and inspiration that this may bring. 

Messages to: Marianne Comfort - MIRP Coordinator Americas

Image: Standing are Sister Diane Clyne, Associate Catherine Regan and Sister Pat Ryan
Seated, left to right: Sister Martha Larsen, Sister Judy Cannon and Associate Jeannette Brantley. 
Not shown are Sister Kathleen Erickson, who participates by phone, and Sister Marilyn Morgan who was unable to be present this time.

Meet the Members of the 'Springs of Life' Group (ISMAPNG)

Six Sisters of Mercy from Community Central B — Srs Audette Mansour, Bernadette Franks, Christina Aitken, Joan Doyle, Marea Roberts, Margaret McGrath— form the 'Springs of Life' group. Together with their Facilitator, Daphne Mckeough rsm, the group held their first meeting was held in March. Their focus is: Condition of the river at Wilcannia:- The impact of the decline in clean water on the life of Fish, Vegetation, Humans.

'We hope this year to connect more deeply on ecological issues with other Mercies, both locally and internationally.'

Messages to: Adele Howard rsm - MIRP Coordinator ISMAPNG

 

MIA Members News

Sisters of Mercy and their companions are gathering in Auckland this weekend to mark the 166th anniversary of the arrival of the first Sisters of Mercy in Aotearoa on April 9, 1850. They were led on their eight-month voyage half-way around the world by Mother Cecilia Maher who recalled later that it was a journey ‘that noone would make, except for God.’                           

Within four decades, other Mercy foundations were established in Wellington, Hokitika (and later in Christchurch) and Dunedin. The pattern in each centre was the same: a long journey to a site unseen, with few resources beyond a deep faith in God and a willingness to serve the poor wherever they were found and whatever their need...

Messages to: Katrina Fabish rsm - Congregational Leader

Image: Mother Cecilia Maher, with St Mary’s Convent in Ponsonby built in 1862

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Reading Luke's Gospel With Ecological Eyes: Part 3 (ISMAPNG)

In part three of her series Elaine Wainwright rsm writes of the experience of resurrection in Luke 24:1-12 as Jesus breaking open astounding new possibilities.

'It seems appropriate at this point in the church’s liturgical year to turn our ecological lens onto the account of the resurrection of Jesus as told in the Lucan gospel,' writes Sr Elaine. '...Newness is taking place in ecological consciousness. Transformation is occurring with ecological action. Easter invites us to engage profoundly with this newness.'

Download the PDF here
Read Part 3 online here
Read Parts 1-2 online here

Messages to: Elaine Wainwright rsm

Editor: a PDF of the complete series will be published in Mercy eNews in December 2016

Image: Sophie and the Women of Jerusalem. Painter Dina Cormick

Social Worker Ann O’Brien receives 2015 OLMC Parramatta Alumnae Award (Parramatta Congregation)

Social Worker Ann O’Brien was announced as the 2015 Our Lady of Mercy College Parramatta Catherine McAuley Alumnae Award recipient at a special assembly at the College on Tuesday, 15 March, 2016. Introduced in 2009, the 120th year of the College, the Catherine McAuley OLMC Parramatta Alumnae Award celebrates and acknowledges the great achievements of the OLMC Alumnae community.

Currently the Director of Marriage Support and Specialist Services at Catholic Care in the Diocese of Parramatta, Ann has devoted herself to the service of others throughout her 30 year career as a social worker. Principal Stephen Walsh says Ann embodies the College’s Mercy qualities; 'In particular, she has shown great compassion and caring throughout her life and work... Ann has followed in the footsteps of the founder of the Sisters of Mercy, Catherine McAuley, by living out our Mercy Values.'

Download the media release (PDF)

Messages to: Christine Pace - Development Officer OLMC

Image: Anne O'Brien with OLMC Principal Stephen Walsh

'Encouraging high school girls to become leaders in their future professions and in their communities is often done best by women in leadership positions.

Students at Mother of Mercy High School [Cincinnati, Ohio] had an opportunity to learn from area women who are such leaders.

The second-ever Women in Leadership seminar took place recentlyat the Westwood high school.

The Women in Leadership program, created by General Electric employees Lauren Tubesing and Malissa Gallini, inspires young women to reach through the proverbial glass ceiling and impact the world around them....'

Source: CIncinnati.com

Messages to: Ellen Daniel - Director of Communications

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Mercy Matters

Helpdesk support in a monastery during the Middle Ages. Enjoy some light humour with this video clip (02:44)

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1846: Foundation to New York from Baggot St - M Agnes O'Connor
1849: M de Sales (Lady Barbara) Eyre died, London
1915: Convent opened in Finley, New South Wales from Albury - M Catherine Dwyer
1964: Foundation made to Yeadon, Leeds from Hunslet, Leeds - Sr Madeleine Searson.

Contribute a fact about the Story of the Sisters of Mercy in your congregation or institute to our online archive

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'...Eternal life is never-ending life. It is the inheritance of those who hear his voice. To hear is to follow through with action. That is the way of those inspired by Jesus, the Good Shepherd. It is the way of the Good Shepherd family and of all who hear the voice of the Shepherd...'

-Veronica Lawson rsm

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Mount Mercy Academy, a distinctly Catholic college-preparatory high school, is dedicated to educating young women for academic excellence, compassionate service, Christian leadership, global awareness and life-long learning. Rooted in Catherine McAuley's vision for women and those who are poor, Mount Mercy affirms the uniqueness and dignity of individuals and fosters faith with a commitment to the challenges of building a just society.

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Resource Reminder: Apps for the Year of Mercy

The Year of Mercy is well underway and these two free Year of Mercy apps are good accompaniment for the rest of the journey:

365 Days to Mercy

Our Sunday Visitor publishing company draws on its wide range of existing resources as well as those created for the Year. Includes daily inspiration, stories, and news

Download from iTunes

Download from GooglePlay

Mercy-ing (previously listed)

This Sisters of Mercy (Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand) development draws from a wide selection of sources &provides a morning and evening reflection.

Download from iTunes

Download from GooglePlay

Becoming Mercy and Love

'To accomplish this mission of making mercy and love tangible around us, we need to actually become this merciful love, so that we are in ourselves a sacrament of God's mercy for others. There is a divinity that lies at the heart of us all, of every single thing we do, think and say. Our faith teaches that divine mercy and love are incarnate in our every effort to "heal the wound", as Pope Francis puts it, in ourselves and others.

It also reminds us that God needs our co-operation to reach a radically distorted humanity...'

Fr Daniel O'Leary, 'Become Soaked in Mercy'

Further Resources

Worth Playing:

The Cat Stevens classic 'Morning has Broken'. Watch/listen here (03:18). Purchase on *iTunes

Worth Viewing:
Opposing Human Trafficking
Presentations from the Vatican-sponsored Conference at the UN on 7 April entitled, 'Ending Human Trafficking by 2030: The Role of Global Partnerships in Eradicating Modern Slavery', can be viewed on UN Webtv. Among the distinguished speakers was Imelda Poole, IBVM, president of RENATE (Religious in Europe Networking Against Trafficking and Exploitation). Watch the presentations here (03:47:37)

Worth Knowing:

Krista Tippet, host of the award-winning, immensely popular radio show and podcast, 'On Being', has released a new book: 'Being Wise: An Inquiry into the Mystery and Art of Living'.

An interview, 'Donald Trump, Black Lives Matter, cosmology — all signs religion is alive and well to Krista Tippett ',  in advance of the release was published in the 6 April issue of the Washington post. Read that article here

The Bottom Line:

'Stop for one whole day every week, and you will remember what it means to be created in the image of God, who rested on the seventh day not from weariness but from complete freedom. The clear promise is that those who rest like God find themselves free like God, no longer slaves to the thousand compulsions that send others rushing toward their graves.'

-Barbara Brown Taylor, New York Times best-selling author, professor, and Episcopal priest

 

Send suggestions and contributions for the 'Worth...' section 2016 to: the Editor

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