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Mercy Enews
No. 537 | 23 October 2013

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


'Sisters': Documentary Premieres on the Big Screen (Americas)

Editor: On Monday evening this week (21 October) the documentary 'Sisters' was premiered at Stockton Campus Center Theatre, New Jersey. Three years in the fundraising, 'Sisters' is the result of the vision and efforts of Executive Producer Carol Rittner rsm, distinguished professor of Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Richard Stockton College, New Jersey. Asked why she wanted to make the documentary, Sr Carol replied, 'I wanted to show there is still energy, commitment and joy among American nuns. We're far fewer and older today, but there is still energy.'

Five women religious appear in the one hour documentary. Two are Mercies - Deirdre Mullan rsm, executive director of Partnership for Global Justice at the United Nations in New York City and Karen Schneider rsm, a pediatric emergency room physician at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. Melissa Camardo, SCL, a hospital administrator in Denver; Monica Gundler, SC, who works with young people in New Orleans; and Michelle Lesher, SSJ, who works in campus ministry at Chestnut Hill College in Philadelphia, are the three other faces of religious life today.

The Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) is hosting the programme on its website (linked to this item) accessed from the VIMEO Channel of its director, three-time Emmy winner and Academy Award nominee, Robert Gardner, of Baltimore. 'Sisters' will be screened on PBS in the near future. Copies of the DVD can be purchased online from Gardner films Meanwhile, watch it online courtesy LCWR.

Messages to:
Carol Rittner rsm
Deirdre Mullan rsm
Karen Schneider rsm


Further Resources

Worth Reading:
Charismatic principles for modern religious
Mary Pellegrino, C.S.J., congregational moderator of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Baden, Pennsylvania, reflects on words spoken at the recent UISG meeting by Cardinal João Braz de Aviz, prefect of the Congregation of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Living. Read the article in America here

Worth a Look:
Atchison Blue: A Search for Silence, a Spiritual Home and a Living Faith
Judy Valente, professional broadcast journalist, contributing correspondent to Religion & Ethics Newsweekly and poet, accepted an invitation from the Benedictine Sisters in Atchison, Kansas to teach a course on poetry. She returned to Mount Saint Scholastica for an average of a week a month over a three-year period, desiring to cultivate an interior life, and entered there into the life of the community. It was, shares Valente in this recent interview on Chicago Tonight, a life-shifting visit. View the interview with Valente here and read an excerpt from her book (07:55) Purchase the book here (paperback and kindle editions)

Worth Viewing:
100 Women: What chance does a young girl have?
'When a young girl starts out in life, where will her journey take her? Will she have the same opportunities as the boys she grows up with? Will she face more dangers, or fight the same battles?'
Throughout October, the BBC's 100 Women season is looking at the world we live in today through the eyes of the women who make up half the world. Watch the very informative infographic animation on the 3.5 bn women in the world. View it here (02:50)

Malala Yousafzai's Jon Stewart interview
Interviewed on The Daily Show show on 11 October, 2013. View it here (16:11)

Worth Knowing:
Modern slavery
Anti-slavery charity Walk Free Foundation, ranked 162 countries on the number living in slavery, the risk of enslavement, and the strength of government responses to combating the illegal activity in the first ever 'Global Slavery Index' released last week. Modern Slavery includes slavery, slavery-like practices (such as debt bondage, forced marriage, and sale or exploitation of children), human trafficking and forced labour.
A key finding from this inaugural Index is that there are an estimated 29.8 million people enslaved around the world. Read the report here (136 pps) The Terminology, Overview and Methods of research are covered in the first 12 pages.

What have we done? How the changing climate is hitting the poorest hardest
Last week CAFOD released a new report into the effects of climate change. What have we done? How the changing climate is hitting the poorest hardest says that climate change is real, its effects are getting worse and the world’s poorest are suffering most. Read the report (16 pps), listen to a short interview on Vatican Radio and add your name to the 'Hungry for Change' campaign. Visit the CAFOD site here to take these actions

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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)