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Presenting Our 2019 Summer JPIC Report With a Fresh New Look! August 16th, 2019
We are excited to share the 2019 Summer JPIC Report with a fresh new look: we hope you like the new design. Please share your feedback and story ideas by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Past issues can be found in the Resources section of the website.
JPIC Report is the twice-yearly newsletter of the US Oblate JPIC Office. It is an informational resource about and for Oblates and others involved in the work of promoting justice, peace and the integrity of creation.
Pax Christi USA, the national Catholic peace and nonviolence movement, joins with the thousands of individuals and groups who have raised their voice over the mass shooting events of the past ten days.
These mass shooting tragedies are not the new normal, but they are the expected consequences of the continued and growing rhetoric of hatred, fear, bigotry, racism, and intolerance voiced consistently from the White House.
Read the full statement at: www.paxchristiusa.org
Missionary Oblates – U.S. Province Joins Faith Groups in 2019 Bipartisan Budget Letter to Congress August 2nd, 2019
Rev. Louis Studer, OMI (Provincial of the U.S. Province), joined national leaders representing a broad array of religious beliefs and faith traditions in a sign-on letter last week urging the administration to pass a bipartisan budget agreement that ‘lifts spending caps for non-defense programs and raises the debt ceiling.’
Citing their responsibility as faith leaders, the group advocated for an agreement that would enable all people to live with ‘dignity and the opportunity to flourish.’ “Federal nutrition assistance, housing assistance, reentry services, education and job training programs, international humanitarian and development assistance, and environmental protections are examples of the critical role federal funding plays in advancing these fundamental values,” the letter states. A bipartisan deal was reached on the bill last week. Read the sign-on letter here.
Fr. Roy Snipes, OMI Featured in PBS Video about Proposed Border Wall August 1st, 2019
For most of his 30 years in ministry as an Oblate priest, Fr. Roy Snipes has been known as the priest who brings his dogs along with him to Mass. But recently, he has found himself in the unwanted spotlight of an effort to stop the building of a wall designed to end the flow of undocumented immigrants into the U.S. from Mexico.
Fr. Snipes is Pastor of Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish in Mission, Texas, a small border town on the banks of the Rio Grande. In addition, he also oversees the historic, La Lomita Chapel, founded and built by the Oblates in about 1865 as a stop-over for itinerant Oblate preachers who traversed the Rio Grande Valley ministering to people living and working on remote ranches and farms. The Chapel is now on the National Register of Historic Places and is part of a municipal park owned by the City of Mission. Fr. Snipes continues to celebrate Mass there and minister to visitors.
Literally on the banks for the Rio Grande, La Lomita is separated from the City of Mission by a levee designed to hold back the river when it floods. As planned, the new wall would run along the levee, leaving the Chapel and many homes in a sort of “no man’s land” between the water and the wall. The local populace, Catholic diocese, government officials, Fr. Snipes and the Missionary Oblates have all registered their opposition to the wall, and in the national media, the Chapel has become a symbol for the political debate between those who support a border wall and those who don’t.
Fr. Snipes has been interviewed and profiled in national TV and radio, and in magazines and newspapers in his position as the local pastor. His folksy ways and straight-talk have made quite an impression on the cynical media. Though he did not seek this attention, given what’s at stake, he speaks his mind.
In this ten and a half minute film, which is part of the PBS Online Film Festival, film-maker Carlos Estrada profiles Fr. Snipes, who reflects on the La Lomita Chapel.
This copyright film by Carlos Estrada is available for viewing on the PBS website, you may click on the link below to view “The Country Priest,” by Carlos Estrada.
EDITOR’S NOTE: A special assembly has been announced in a bulletin issued by the Vatican: “In accordance with the proclamation by Pope Francis on October 15, 2017, the Special Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, called to reflect on the theme: New Paths for the Church and for an Integral Ecology, will take place in October 2019. New paths for evangelization must be designed for and with the People of God who live in this region: inhabitants of communities and rural areas, of cities and large metropolises, people who live on river banks, migrants and displaced persons, and especially for and with indigenous peoples.”
In preparation for the synod, Fr. Séamus Finn, OMI, Director of OMIUSA JPIC, has assembled the following resources.
The following three resources (1 article and 2 videos) are excellent resources as we enter the final phase of preparation for the forthcoming synod; “Amazonia, New paths for the Church and for an Integral Ecology”
- In the article Mauricio Lopez locates the Synod within the context of the encyclical Laudato Sí and identifies some of the opportunities that the synod offers to the universal church and to each of us: https://www.vaticannews.va/en/church/news/2019-06/the-pan-amazon-synod-walking-together-in-an-ecclesial-kairos.html
- The ‘love-the Nature’ film is a very attractive and engaging meditation on the Story of the Cosmos and how we have come full circle in absorbing the lessons of the natural world and building on those insights through our research and imagination: https://uplift.tv/2019/love-thy-nature/
- The PBS video tells the story of the Amazon bio region and its inhabitants and why we must be very careful in the choices that we make about its future: https://www.pbs.org/video/the-amazon-xs6uil/
Missionary Oblates Join Global Investors in Urging G20 Governments to Address Climate Change June 27th, 2019
477 global investors managing more than $34 trillion in assets, nearly half the world’s invested capital, have released a statement ahead of the G20 Summit. They are urging world leaders to accelerate their response to the climate crisis to ensure the goals of the 2015 Paris climate deal can be met. The G-20, representing the 20 largest economies in the world are meeting in Osaka, Japan from June 28-29.
“As institutional investors with millions of beneficiaries around the world, we reiterate our full support for the Paris Agreement and strongly urge all governments to implement the actions that are needed to achieve the goals of the Agreement, with the utmost urgency.”
“Investors are taking action on climate change. The global shift to clean energy is underway, but much more needs to be done by governments to accelerate the low carbon transition and to improve the resilience of our economy, society and the financial system to climate risks. Investors continue to make significant investments into the low carbon transition across a range of asset classes.” Click here to read the full statement.