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Catherine McAuley, foundress of the Sisters of Mercy, used her inheritance in service of the needs of her time. 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...This vision keeps alive the founding spirit of Catherine among peoples of the world most in need of God's compassion and mercy.
– from the MIA Visioning Statement 2007
Mission in Mache, Peru (The Congregation)
" Perched 3,256m (11,000 feet approx.) up in the Northern Andes, under the towering summit of Miramar, looking down on the sloping valleys, Mache ( from a Quechan Word meaning 'sweet', 'pleasant', 'pleasing' , 'ripe', 'well-seasoned' ) is one of the ten districts in the Province of Otuzco in the La Libertad Region of Peru.
When the first Sisters of Mercy arrived here in 1994 to start a new mission, the journey from Trujillo took eight hours. Since then the roads have improved somewhat because of the mining interests in Agallpampa. Now the 100 km journey from Trujillo can be done in three hours. An asphalt road, rising all the time, goes as far as Otuzco and then an hour’s journey on a track, still rising, takes you into the very heart of the Andes to the little town of Mache..."
Messages to: Angelica González Haro rsm
Editor: Having set the scene for us so vividly in her article linked to this item, Angelica then recounts the ministry activity of the Sisters currently missioned there - she and Cáit Wims rsm. Through this, the first feature for 2013, we are transported to one of the many Mercy places in the 44 countries where Sisters of Mercy and their co-workers live and minister. Over the course of the year we will visit many such centres of Mercy inspiration and activity. Let your place be one of them. Share your news with us. Submit your article online or email it to the Editor.
Photo: Mache and surrounding countryside
Mercy Activity Continues Around Rio+20 (MGA)
The Mercy Global Action Network (MGAN) has been active in the period before and after Christmas in following up on the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20). A letter was sent by almost all Mercy Congregations around the world to their political leaders asking them to ensure that civil society groups are involved fully in the implementation of The Future We Want – the outcome document from the Rio+ 20 Conference. A copy of the letter sent to Prime Ministers, Ministers for Foreign Affairs and Environment and UN Permanent Representatives in countries where Mercy operates is linked to the full report attached to this item.
Messages to: Mary Purcell - Assistant Director Mercy Global Action
Registration Open for the 2013 Pilgrimage of Young Mercy Leaders (MIA)
Up to 150 secondary school students from Mercy schools and ministries around the world are expected to gather in Dublin from 16th - 19th July 2013 for the Dublin Pilgrimage of Young Mercy Leaders. Registration for this pilgrimage is now open, and all participants must return their registration materials to Mercy International Association by Friday, March 29th (Good Friday).
Keynote presenters for the 2013 Pilgrimage include: Áine Barrins rsm who will break open some of Catherine McAuley's story; Karen Schneider rsm, MD, a paediatric physician with Johns Hopkins University and Health System, who will talk about global Mercy ministry and share stories of her ministry with people living in extreme poverty in various countries around the world; and Mary Reynolds rsm, Executive Director of Mercy International Association, who will engage the theme of Mercy leadership today. These keynote presentations will be combined with workshops, discussions, rituals, socials, and the sharing of gifts and talents in an evening talent show.
The Registration materials can be accessed in the article linked to this item.
Messages to: Mary Kay Dobrovolny rsm - Assistant Director Heritage & Spirituality
Mercy International Association Intention for the Coming Week (MIA)
Deeply conscious of the (estimated) sixty countries currently involved in wars, and of the impact of those conflicts on people, animals and earth, Mercy International Association invites readers to join us and all those who are praying for world peace, as part of the Christian Unity week celebrated this week (January 18 - 25).
Messages to: Mary Reynolds rsm - Executive Director MIA
Programmes at Mercy International Centre (MIA)
Places are still available in programmes on offer throughout 2013. In particular, we invite vowed members to consider participation in the Watering the Roots at the Wellspring of Mercy renewal programme (Sunday, 2 June – Saturday, 29 June). Attached here is further information about that month long residential programme which offers participants the opportunity to take 'time ou't in an atmosphere of warmth, hospitality, and internationality in order to discern more clearly the invitation of the Spirit in how to live out the mission of Mercy in our church and world.
Messages to: Mary Kay Dobrovolny rsm - Assistant Director heritage & Spirituality
RSM Philippines Elect New Leadership Team (Philippines)
The RSM Philippines had their election for the New Leadership Team last December 30, 2012 at Our Lady of Mercy Convent, Tacloban City. There were forty qualified voters. A holy hour was conducted, then two scrutineers were elected before the election proper.
The newly elected Leadership Team members are: M. Carmela Cabactulan rsm (General Superior), Ma. Lourdes Amascual rsm (Assistant Superior), Marian Ladrera rsm (2nd Councillor), Cecille Marie Lim rsm (3rd Councillor) and M. Agnes Lumbay rsm (4th Councillor). The said Leadership Team will serve the community for three years.
We thank the Lord for his constant guidance and intervention.
Messages to: Marian C. Ladrera rsm - Leadership Team
Experience Treasures of the Mercy Journey in Birmingham in July 2013 (GB Union)
Why not consider a Mercy Sabbatical spending time following one woman’s dream of a different world – from Dublin to London and to Birmingham? Each location has extensive archives that tell the founding story of the Sisters of Mercy and each has its individual and unique resources.
Experience Treasures of the Mercy Journey in Birmingham from Sunday 7th – 13th July 2013.
This will be a unique week in Catherine’s final foundation – St Mary’s Convent, Birmingham – in the original building for which Catherine gave very precise design instructions and where she arrived in August 1841. The clock still chimes and the Convent bell still rings as they did during Catherine’s visit. Steeped in the history of the time, St Mary’s continues as an important heritage site for the Sisters of Mercy, their Associates and the wider community.
Facilitated by the Team at St Mary’s
Cost £490.00 (all inclusive)
Messages to: The Director St Mary’s Convent Birmingham
Mercy Examines Fossil Fuel Engagements in Light of Divestment Campaign (Americas)
A growing movement led by Bill McKibben of 350.org has garnered national attention by calling on investors to divest, or withdraw their investments, from fossil fuel companies. As a socially responsible investor concerned with care for the Earth, Mercy Investment Services has initiated a review of its current advocacy approach with fossil fuel companies.
Mercy Investment Services recognizes that the investment of financial resources is itself a ministry of the Sisters of Mercy. As a responsible steward of the invested assets of the Sisters of Mercy, Mercy Investment Services seeks to preserve and enhance the funds through investments congruent with the values and mission of the Sisters of Mercy, as amplified in the Direction Statement and critical concerns of the Sisters of Mercy...
Messages to: Pat Zerega - Director of Shareholder Advocacy
Editor: The IJT Newsletter reports that Kathleen Erickson rsm, a justice coordinator for the West Midwest Community, organized a group to attend a presentation in Omaha and you may read some of their reflections here. Sr Mary, ecology director for the Sisters of Mercy's Northeast Community, shares her reflections here, and you may find a video she recommends on climate change here (YouTube).
Mercy Speaks Out on Gun Violence (Americas)
In the wake of the Newtown, Connecticut shootings, the Institute Leadership Team ( ILT) and Institute Justice Team (IJT) are adding their voices to those of other faith groups speaking out against gun violence. Efforts include signing on to letters to President Obama and members of Congress urging legislation that addresses background checks for gun purchases and the availability of military-style weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines.. The ILT and IJT are also looking at how to address mental health issues and a culture that breeds violence in many forms.
A means to send your own letter to representatives and senators can be accessed on the Institute website and is linked to this item.
Messages to: Pat Kenny rsm - Institute Communications Office
Stopping Trafficking in ANZ (Aotearoa New Zealand)
The issue of trafficking is different in New Zealand to what it is in Europe and the United States as we are surrounded by so much water!
In December 2012 I attended a Train the Trainers Meeting run in conjunction with the Immigration Department and “Stop the Traffick” which is part of the work of the Salvation Army. It was really interesting to learn that no one has been caught “trafficking” in New Zealand yet. Part of the problem is that the definition of trafficking that the NZ Government has does not recognise, as trafficked, people who may come to New Zealand voluntarily for work, such as many people from the Pacific Islands who come to do seasonal fruit picking. When they get here their conditions are substandard, pay is poor and sometimes their passports are held until they have paid enough money back for their airfares etc.
It was suggested at this meeting that in fact the biggest risk of trafficking in New Zealand is perhaps not the sex industry but horticulture and the hospitality industry.
The New Zealand definition of trafficking also requires movement across the border so does not allow prosecution of those who force others into a form of slavery once they have arrived in the country.
Further detailsof the work Stop Trafficking work Mercies are engaged in in Aotearoa New Zealand can be accessed here.
Messages to: Anna Nicholls rsm
A New Mercy tradition Commences at Mount Aloysius College in Cresson, Pennsylvania (Americas)
During our December 2012 graduation at Mount Aloysius College we encouraged graduates to take as a memento of their Mercy education, (we were founded by the Religious Sisters of Mercy in 1853), a unique cup and saucer set collected for this purpose by Mrs. Michele Foley, wife of our esteemed President Thomas P. Foley, JD.
Our Vice President of Mission Integration Helen Marie Burns rsm announced this "new tradition" (the offering of these cup and saucers) and, of course, related the story of the wish of the late Mother Catherine McAuley
in order to put the tradition into historical context.
Further details of this new tradition can be found here
Messages to: Jack Coyle - Director of Communications Mount Aloysius College
Catherine McAuley Statue Dedication at Mercy High School in Middletown, CT (Americas)
Sr. Mary McCarthy, RSM, current President of Mercy High School Connecticut and past Principal for 34 years, held tight to her dream of honoring the work and mission of Catherine McAuley, by having a commissioned statue of Catherine on display at Mercy. In 2005 when architectural plans were under development for a new gymnasium and entrance, Sr. Mary asked that the plan incorporate a niche, with the hope that one day a life-sized statue of Catherine would be placed there. Two years later, the new Mercy Tiger Gymnasium opened and the niche was there, but empty.
In a report linked here is the story of how Sr Mary's dream finally became a reality and how she came to be able to say to the students of Mercy High: "As you pass Catherine every day, remember that you are standing on the shoulders of those who went before you and that you must carry Mercy to the world."
Messages to: Marie Kalita-Leary - Director of Communication and Public Relations
Giving Thanks for 40 Years of Mercy Ministry (GB Institute)
A Mass of Thanksgiving for the 40 years of St Mary’s Convent, Hornchurch was celebrated at the Sisters’ Parish Church in Gidea Park on Saturday 12th January. Sisters of the Institute gathered from across the country joined by local Mercy Associates, ex-pupils, parishioners, Carers and well wishers for this celebration.
Patricia Bell rsm, Congregational Leader, in a short but moving speech after Mass, recorded on video, paid tribute to Sr. Thecla and the Founding Sisters. Whilst acknowledging the pain of letting go, Sr Patricia spoke of the importance of living ‘in the now’. The theme of ‘fruit that will last’ from the Gospel reading taken from John 15 reminded everyone that, despite the sadness of the occasion, the work of the Sisters is still being carried on.
Messages to: Cathy Edge rsm - Institute Web Co-ordinator and IT Support Person
1832: First reception ceremony, Baggot Street
1873: Foundation to Rochester, Auburn
1876: Foundation to Bendigo from Swinford Co Mayo
The Psalms - Human Voices of Prayer and Suffering
Giving the reader her own translation of the psalms she discusses in this work, Carmel McCarthy rsm also offers suggestions into how one might pray with them today, and concludes each reflection with a prayer taking up some of the key images and phrases of the psalm in question.
Purchase online from Amazon
Nga Whaea Atawhai o Aotearoa Sisters of Mercy New Zealand
Over 200 sisters seek to live the Gospel of Jesus Christ by engaging in the works of Mercy, according to the charism of Catherine McAuley. Together with our companions in mission, our vision is for a world where God’s generous love and mercy are experienced by all.
“It’s our hope that those who visit the website will come to experience the mercy of God at its deepest levels – seeing in the works of compassion a focus of mercy in our own time and place,” says Katrina Fabish who is the Leadership Team’s communications spokesperson.
Using this free web app (application) you can create a new planner for the new year and customise your planner the way you like.
Choose your start and end dates, paper size, portrait or landscape orientation and whether your planner should have a weekly, multi-week or monthly view. When you are done, you can download it as a PDF and print it out.
Worth Reading: LCWR Newsletter, January 2013 ; Stop Trafficking January 2013
Worth watching: Landfill Harmonic (especially by Mercy musicians). See what happens when a cello made from an oil can and pieces of wood thrown in the garbage; a saxophone made of spoons and buttons and other instruments crafted by Nicolas, a recycler with no previous experience making musical instruments, are given to children living hand-to-mouth by the garbage dump in Catuera, Paraguay. Be inspired.
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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 Patricia McDermott (US), Peter Burnett, Sister Colette Cronin (British), Maura Hyland, Sister Margaret Casey,
James Peppiatt-Combes (US) and Sister Denise Fox (NZ)