A Statement from the Friars of St. John the Baptist Province
“As Franciscans, we must be people of peace. We must strive to live the Gospel and respect all— regardless of race, religion, and gender.”
Franciscan Media — The loss of hope is a terrible thing. It can be lethal. But for most of us, a deficiency of it shows itself in more subtle ways: discouragement, putting our trust in everything but God, or focusing too much on the negative in the world.
The recent vitriol between President Donald Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong-un—as well as the attack in Charlottesville, Virginia, and the ensuing racial tensions—have given many of us a reason to panic and lose sleep. But hope is alive.
St. Anthony Messenger — The debate about symbols of the Confederacy present in government-sponsored memorials and other spaces has been erupting, on and off, since the Civil War. The issue came into focus a few years ago, with southern state flags containing Confederate symbolism. Local governments have been acting and debating on various statues and memorials ever since.
Now, in August of 2017, the nation is embroiled in the debate about racism, violence and freedom of expression again, this time after protest conflicts in Charlottesville, Virginia.
St. Anthony Messenger — The US Department of Justice reports that one in three black American men can expect to go to prison in his lifetime. One in three: the same proportion as suffer hair loss or weight gain.
The same ratio as those who have insomnia or develop diabetes. One in three. It’s hard to imagine that this stark fact is a fluke rather than a symptom of a larger problem.
Franciscan Media — Peace is both a wonderful and a much-abused word. Because we seek peace constantly, it has many counterfeits. For example, peace at any price always yields no peace at a very steep price.
Francis promoted peace among his friars, among the Poor Clares, among the Secular Franciscans, among all people. Thomas of Celano writes that the immensely popular Francis “seemed to be a man of another world” (First Life, 36). Francis called people back into the peace and harmony of a world into which God had created the human family and which was as fragile in Francis’ day as it is in our own.
WASHINGTON (CNS) — After the weekend of mayhem in Charlottesville, Virginia, the town’s college Catholic community was wondering — like many others around the nation — what to do.
The protest and counterprotests making national news were unfolding right in their hometown and the rally’s torch-lit march and angry chants the night of Aug. 11 were even closer to home — on the grounds of their campus, the University of Virginia.
WASHINGTON (CNS) — The Franciscan Action Network called on all Americans, “especially ourselves and those who have benefited from white privilege,” to look within themselves “and confront America’s original sin — the sin of racism.”
“White Americans must no longer stand silent as we continue to benefit from the attitudes and structures that put us ahead of African-Americans and other minority groups,” the organization said in an Aug. 14 statement issued in reaction to a chaotic and hate-filled weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia, Aug. 11 and 12.
WASHINGTON (CNS) — In the aftermath of a chaos- and hate-filled weekend in Virginia, Catholic bishops and groups throughout the nation called for peace after three people died and several others were injured following clashes between pacifists, protesters and white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia, Aug. 11 and 12.
President of US Conference of Catholic Bishops Calls For Calm Amid Violent Protests In Charlottesville, via the USCCB