“Catholic social teaching is a central and essential element of our faith. Its roots are in the Hebrew prophets who announced God’s special love for the poor and called God’s people to a covenant of love and justice. It is a teaching founded on the life and words of Jesus Christ, who came “to bring glad tidings to the poor . . . liberty to captives . . . recovery of sight to the blind”(Lk 4:18-19), and who identified himself with “the least of these,” the hungry and the stranger (cf. Mt 25:45). Catholic social teaching is built on a commitment to the poor. This commitment arises from our experiences of Christ in the Eucharist.”*
Our Promoters of Social Justice, Lyn Kirkconnell and Sister Judy Lu McDonnell, OP, work with the sisters and our institutions as resource persons. Through mailings, action alerts, personal invitation, speaking at community meetings, offering days of study and reflection, our promoters keep the sisters attuned to issues of justice and Catholic Social Teaching.
In a particular way, they focus on the specific areas selected by the sisters for attention. Prior to the congregation’s Chapter meeting in 2000, the sisters spent a year studying the issues of capital punishment, immigration, affordable housing and spirituality. Resource materials distributed and discussed by all the sisters helped the assembled delegates to select and act on one issue– capital punishment. A corporate stance was written and voted upon by all delegates.
In addition, our promoters work in collaboration with individuals and institutions outside of our congregation. They serve as liaisons for the congregation with local, regional and national organizations. Finally, our promoters lobby state and national legislators on justice issues such as non-violence, penal reform, human rights, affordable housing, environmental protection, rights of immigrants, and support for women and children.
*Source: The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ website