April 22, 2018

News updates from MIRP Coordinators & Key Facilitators

MIRP Stage 4 – Collective Action. Report from Adelaide (ISMAPNG)

As Sisters of Mercy responding to Pope Francis' call to heed the cry of the Earth, we do not support any importation to or storage of nuclear waste in South Australia.

At a meeting of the Adelaide MIRP group on 29 October, a number of collective actions that we chose to commit ourselves to locally, regionally and internationally were decided upon.

Download our action list here (2pps; PDF) Heeding the Cry of the Earth (PowerPoint)

Messages to: Duyen Nguyen rsm - Key Facilitator Community South A (ISMAPNG)

Meredith Evans rsm facilitating group
Pat Fox rsm listening to responses

Shattered Earth and Displaced People are of a Piece: Reponse from a Stage Two (ISMAPNG)

Three groups met in Brisbane on 14 May to engage in Stage 2 of the MIRProcess. We revisited Stage 1 and set the scene for the people who were attending for the first time. We situated the analysis against the backdrop of the Anthropocene, the new geological era which takes its name from the dominance of humans over even geological processes. We asked ourselves if humans are controlling the world!

We constructed our problem trees, individually, as a small group, and then shared our insights with one another in the whole group. One theme which emerged loudly was society’s obsession with “stuff”-with acquiring it regardless of the cost to others, of going to war for it, of making political decision based on it, of basing our very identity on having more and more of it. As one group said, 'We want the biggest and the best, and then we throw away the rest'. People and Earth itself are sacrificed in the pursuit of stuff.

One group pointed out that the pyramid view of the world which orders everything from lesser to higher value makes it easier to devalue whatever is below us on the ladder. Yet it appears that God has been knocked off the top of the ladder, and humans are not making a good job of being elevated to the top position. That worldview needs to be revisited, and in so doing we need to look at how we see and experience God, because that image is being used to justify the behaviour that causes the shattering of Earth and the displacement of peoples.

Messages to: Mary Tinney rsm -  Key Facilitator Northern Community ISMAPNG

Sisters in Adelaide, South Australia gathered on 7 May for Stage Two of MIRP (ISMAPNG)

The thirty-three Sisters who first gathered on 5 March (see report below) and identified two concerns: the Plight of Asylum Seekers and Refugees and to the Destruction of the Environment, came together last Saturday, 7 May to engage in stage Two of the Process. Their reports follow:
Local Facilitators and Keynote Speakers: Tess Flaherty rsm, Margaret Adams rsm, Duyen Nguyen rsm, Philippa Rowland, Marie Ralph rsm, Patrick Wright and Anne Foale rsm

Focus 1: The plight of Refugees and Asylum Seekers

A number of underlying causes were identified. The three key factors that the group would like to bring to our engagement with the wisdom traditions were represented in the form of a diagram of a triangle: Greed, Fear and Misinformation, with Power and the Economy in the centre.

Greed: We all want to have more and be more. Bringing more Refugees and Asylum Seekers to our country could reduce our individual share of the wealth of our nation.

Fear: People are genuinely afraid of who may be allowed to enter our country. The media stirs up our fears and xenophobia.

Misinformation: The Politicians seek to maintain their power. The information made available to the electorate is limited and manipulated.

Focus 2: Heeding the Cry of the Earth

The group suggested changing the name from the Destruction of the Earth to “Heeding the Cry of the Earth”.

The three key factors identified:

1) Anthropocentrism related to traditional interpretation of scripture which allows us to see humans as the peak and centre of creation and the rest of creation here to serve our needs.
2) The interconnectivity of all things – we are just one part of the environment.
3) The attitude of individual acquisitiveness.

Messages to: Duyen Nguyen rsm - Key Facilitator Community South A (ISMAPNG)

Forty-two Sisters Sisters of Mercy in Western Australia Gathered for MIRP Stage One (ISMAPNG)

In Mercy eNews, 30 March

Back row. L-r: Srs Breda O’Reilly, Eileen McVitttie, Pauline Masters, Sandra Smolinski, Perpetua Della Marta, Liz Nicholls Middle row. L-r: Srs Caroline Ryan (Facilitator) Maura Kelleher, Louise Fortune, Kaye Bolwell, Carmel Wringe, Roberta Dillon, Hope Messer, Leonie O’Brien, Margaret Tallon, Noreen Cahill, Marie Fitzgerald, Betty McMahon, Flo O’Sullivan, Anna Maria O’Shea, Jo Dillon, Justina Talty, Catherine O’Connor, Mollie Wright, Carmel O’Donohoe, Claire Keating, Martina Killeen, Paula McAdam, Jilyan Dingle, Kerry Willison, Janina Pascoe, Margaret Lipsett, Joan Buckham, Joan Kelleher Front row. L-r: Srs Joan Eileen Carroll, Ellen O’Neill, Maureen Mohen, Irena Kasprzyk, Berice Livermore, Joan Smith, Teresa Daly, Roma Banducci, Beverley Stott (Community South A Perth Facilitator)

On Saturday, 12 March, 42 members of Community South A gathered at Santa Maria College, Attadale, Western Australia for Stage One of the Mercy International Reflection Process.

Two groups were formed:

Group Focus 1: Displacement and Movement of Peoples caused by rapid climate change (carbon pollution), economic disparity, war

Group Focus 2: Degradation of Water Supplies as a result of wastage and other ills affecting Humans and Nature.

Messages to: Beverley Stott rsm - Community South A Perth Facilitator

33 Sisters Gather in Adelaide, South Australia to Commence MIRP (ISMAPNG)

In Mercy eNews 16 March 2016

Front row. L-r: Srs Thu Do, Margaret Adams, Tess Flaherty, Elizabeth Young, Trang Tran Middle row. L-r: Srs Pat Phillips, Janet Lowe, Mary Harvey, Mary Mutlow, Betty Schonfeldt, Loyola Crowe, Denise Coen, Bernadette Marks Back row. L-r: Srs Ali Roach, Marie Ralph, Mary Symonds, Gabrielle Travers, Nien Tran, Cynthia Griffin, Gloria Lord, Kathryn Travers, Claudette Cusack, Rosemary Day, Catherine Seward, Marie Britza, Marietta Green, Ilsa Neicinieks, Ruth Egar, Lyn Beck, Berice Livermore, Anne Tormey

On Saturday, March 5th 2016, thirty-three Sisters of Mercy gathered in Adelaide to engage in Stage 1 of the Mercy International Reflection Process (MIRP). We started the day with the God of Mercy Chant by Gina Ogilvie and the Prayer for the Year of Mercy written by Bill Patenaude for the Global Catholic Climate Movement. A brief overview of MIRP and the 4 stages of the process and a Powerpoint of quotes from Laudato Si’ with stimulating images on the theme: Cry of the Earth and Cry of the Poor, beautifully led the group into a prayerful reflective process.

Each Sister valued her quiet time to contemplate 'What is the strong concern that stirs in me when I reflect on this phrase: ‘Cry of the Earth and Cry of the Poor’?'After sharing and discussions the group agreed to bring forward the Plight of Asylum Seekers and Refugees and the Destruction of the Environment to focus and reflect upon over the coming months.

Some views focussed on the reflective process (excellent, valuable, helping us to look beyond ourselves, having time to get in touch with our heart) while others emphasised the need for action, pointing out that this was something that was needed urgently in regard to the Plight of Asylum Seekers and Refugees and to the Destruction of the Environment. Sisters recognised causal links between these two concerns.

The general hope was that the reflective process on these two concerns would lead to effective concerted action in whatever field was required: political, environmental, cultural and social justice. Some also highlighted our Mercy mission and interest in Mercies doing this together in the light of the global context.

Messages to: Duyen Nguyen rsm - Key Facilitator Community South A (ISMAPNG)

Summary of MIRP presentation by Elizabeth Davis rsm at the Latin American Caribbean Conference (LACC)

In Mercy eNews 9 March 2016

Sisters of Mercy from many countries of Latin America and the Caribbean were present in Panama for the Latin American Caribbean Conference (LACC) between February 21-25, 2016.

Photo: Elizabeth Marrie rsm - MIRP Coordinator Newfoundland

Elizabeth Davis rsm (Newfoundland) who is the liaison between the Mercy Leaders and the Reflection process, gave a presentation on MIRP to the assembly: A summary of her comments follows in both English and Spanish is linked to this item.Comments on the Mercy International Reflection Process (MIRP) by Elizabeth Davis rsm Liaison between the Mercy Leaders and the Reflection process.

This is a Kairos moment for Sisters of Mercy in all forty-four countries in which we live and minister. This is such a blessed moment because this is the Year of Mercy following the Year of Consecrated Life and because we have the opportunity to reflect together deeply on matters of great importance through the Mercy International Reflection Process....

Read the Summary here (PDF)

Comentarios sobre el proceso de Reflexión Internacional de Misericordia
por Elizabeth M. Davis, RSM, Liaison entre los Líderes de la Misericordia y el Proceso de Reflexión

Este es un momento de Kairos para Hermanas de la Misericordia en todos los cuarenta y cuatro países en donde vivimos y ministramos. Este es un momento bendito porque este es el Año de la Misericordia tras el Año de Vida Consagrada y porque tenemos la oportunidad de reflexionar juntos profundamente en asuntos de gran importancia en el Proceso de Reflexión de Misericordia Internacional.

Lea el resumen aquí (PDF)

Messages to: Elizabeth Davis rsm - Congregation Leader Sisters of Mercy Newfoundland

Mercy International Reflection Process Facilitation Training in Aotearoa New Zealand

In Mercy eNews 9 March 2016

With the summer holidays now a distant memory and with autumn knocking on the door, the last Friday evening and Saturday of February saw 37 participants gathered in Wellington to begin their training as Facilitators of the Mercy International Reflection Process for Nga Whaea Atawhai o Aotearoa Sisters of Mercy New Zealand. The group comprised sisters from across Aotearoa which included sisters of Samoan and Tongan origins. There were 2 members of Te Kahui Pou the Congregation’s Maori Advisory group with a couple of their family members, members of He Waka Tiaki the National Mission Team, the principal, some teachers and 3 students from a Mercy secondary college, and 2 members of a young lay community connected to the Sisters of Mercy. Members of the Leadership Team also joined those who came for the training.

In deep discussion
Some of the many participants at the Facilitators Training

Participants had watched Elizabeth Davis’ invitation to 'Become a Doorkeeper of Mercy during the Year of Mercy' as preparation for the weekend and came with a story concerning 'the cry of the Earth and the cry of the Poor'. Beginning with these stories they were lead through the four stages of the reflection process by Kathleen Rushton rsm, the Key Facilitator of MIRP in Aotearoa. This gave participants a wee taste of the process they would facilitate. The Coordinators, Teresa Anderson rsm and Natalie Murphy rsm, lead participants through the resources available on the MIRP microsite, as well as alerting them to resources from Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand and books by local theologians and writers that reflect on concerns of the Earth and the Poor in New Zealand and the Pacific.

Discussion flowed from questions from the participants, who also offered helpful information and tips about leading groups.

Each day’s sessions began with Pope Francis’ Prayer for the Earth. Participants were provided with a folder of handouts to guide them in their role as facilitators. Groups are now being formed across Aotearoa in a variety of settings, where possible, with a mix of sisters and companions in Mercy. One of the Samoan sisters who participated in the training will be returning to Samoa to bring the Mercy International Reflection Process to life there.

To conclude the training, Katrina Fabish rsm Congregation Leader of Nga Whaea Atawhai o Aotearoa thanked participants for taking up their role and commissioned them with a blessing. Each was given a candle decorated with the MIRP logo and the Year of Mercy image to use with their MIRP groups.

Messages to Natalie Murphy rsmTeresa Anderson rsm - MIRP Coordinators ANZ and Kathleen Rushton rsm Key Facilitator

Preparing for the Mercy International Reflection Process Community Central B, ISMAPNG

In Mercy eNews 9 March 2016

On the weekend of February 6 and 7 eighteen sisters and Mercy colleagues who will be facilitating the Mercy International Reflection Process (MIRP) for groups within Community Central B gathered at the Mercy Spirituality Centre, Toronto, New South Wales to learn more about their role.

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