Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Bi-National Advent Posada on the Border in Nogales - Dec 15th

"In the Church, no one is a foreigner." Pope John Paul II

SUNDAY DECEMBER 15th - A profound and special Advent Event!

The steel and barbed wire fence that separates the U.S. and Mexico will become a powerful symbol again this year -- not of division, but of unity and solidarity as pilgrims on both sides of the border will meet in Nogales to re-enact, with music and prayers "La Posada" or journey of Mary and Joseph as they went from house to house, seeking shelter and hospitality on the first Christmas. The ceremony is designed to strengthen social, religious, economic and cultural bonds in both countries and to counter the virulent anti-immigrant sentiment that currently permeates the atmosphere.


3:00 pm - Posada Ceremony begins
4:00 pm - Transporation to Migrant Center Location
4:30 pm - Blessing of future Migrant Center
5:30 pm - Fiesta and sharing with Migrants at Christo Rey Church
7:00 pm - Transportation back to Border entrance and return to Tucson


CLICK HERE for flyer with more details & directions

For more information, contact:
The Office of Catholic Social Mission
Diocese of Tucson

URGENT ACTION ALERT -- Justice for Immigrants!



Friends and Colleagues,

We have learned that the House Democrats will hold a meeting December 5 to help determine whether to permit the enforcement-only bill, the SAVE Act (H.R. 4088), to move forward sometime in 2008.

Please contact your representatives, particularly Democratic representatives, as soon as possible expressing opposition to H.R. 4088. You can contact your representative at 202-225-3121 in Washington or in their district office.

Chris West Interim
JFI Campaign Manager
Phone: 410.949.7057
Catholic Relief Services
228 West Lexington Street
Baltimore, MD 21201-3413

Sign up for the CRS Legislative Network!

NOTE: Background on the SAVE Act (H.R. 4088) & a sample action letter can be found HERE (doc)

Information provided by Joanne Welter

Friday, November 23, 2007

Building Hope and Solidarity on the U.S./Mexico Border

Seeking a story of hope about Border Issues?

At the Catholic Relief Services (CRS) website, you can find an excerpt from a chapter titled "The Golden Kernel: Building Hope and Solidarity on the U.S./Mexico Border". The posted excerpt has photos and a video interview with Erica Dahl-Bredine of CRS who gives an excellent overview of the issues involved in the current border crisis and the position of the U.S. Catholic Church with respect to comprehensive immigration reform.

This chapter is one of many stories of hope in the new book: "Solidarity Will Transform the World" (Orbis Books 2007) by Jeffrey Odell Korgen.

Jeff Korgen is secretary of The Roundtable Association of Diocesan Social Action Directors and director of Social Ministries for the National Pastoral Life Center in New York City. He will be in Tucson for the SW Liturgical Conference on "Eucharist and Justice: Walking in Charity and Peace" in January 2008.

"Shop Your Conscience" this Christmas Season

Here are two opportunities:

(1) St. Michael and All Angels Episcopal Church 602 N. Wilmot Road, at 5th Street will hold its Advent International Bazaar on the weekend of December 1 & 2, sponsored by St. Michael's Social Concerns Group. All groups participating will be non-profit, non-violent, & socially committed. Cafe Justo will be there!

Saturday December 1st, 5 - 8 p.m.
Opening reception & sale. Mzekala sings Balkan traditional songs.

Sunday December 2nd, 9 a.m - 3 p.m
All participating groups. Food & music from 11:30 a.m.

All activities are in the Parish Center and adjacent patio, NE corner of the Church complex.

(2) You and your friends are all invited to the 9th annual GUAMAP "Shop Your Conscience" Holiday Art Sale. Come celebrate and support GUAMAP's 14th year of successful acupuncture training in the Peten, Guatemala.

When: Saturday, December 1, 10 am - 4:00 pm
Where: Off of North Silverbell between W. Speedway Blvd. & W. Grant Rd; 1991 W. Calle Camapa de Plata .

Non-profits and community artisans selling their wonderful and useful wares-- Products and crafts from Guatemala and all of Central America, Panama, Colombia, Mexico, Zambia. Fair Trade coffee for sale, 2008 Guatemala calendars,political teeshirts and bumper stickers, paintings, desert plant cosmetics,handcrafted and beaded jewelry, olive oil imported from Palestine, hot food, sweets and coffee and hot chocolate and music all day.

[information provided by Barbara Padilla]

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Community Supported Agriculture

Encouraging Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is one way we can live more simply, sustainably, and in tune with our environment. Learn more at the Tucson CSA website.

KUAT TV recently aired two segments on Community Supported Agriculture and how one can live sustainably -- even in Tucson. Here are links to the two videos on KUAT's website:

Community Supported Agriculture-1 "Community Supported Agriculture in Tucson"

Community Supported Agriculture-2 "Urban Chickens"

The KUAT website also includes the following links:

Community Food Bank

Farm directory

Native Seeds Search

Justice for Immigrants

The Justice for Immigrants website is a starting point for a host of information, resources and links about the issues surrounding the Catholic Campaign for Immigration Reform.

Stay tuned for more posts related to our local border situation.

Climate Change and Catholic Social Teaching

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change just came out with the most recent report in its series on Climate Change 2007. Press release info about the reports can be found here.

This would be a good time to review the USCCB's 2001 statement on this issue: Global Climate Change: A Plea for Dialogue, Prudence, and the Common Good.

For a more recent February 2007 statement by the USCCB on climate change, see: U.S. Bishops Call for Moral Focus on Global Climate Change; New Report Demands Urgent Attention

The USCCB currently is engaged in a Climate Change Justice and Health Initiative. See the website for additional information and resources for parishes.

Monday, November 19, 2007

U.S. Bishops' new "Faithful Citizenship" Statement

The U.S. Catholic bishops recently approved their new faithful citizenship statement, titled "Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship: A Call to Political Responsibility."

Here is their official Press Release (November 14, 2007)

The complete text of the statement can be found in PDF format at the USCCB's Faithful Citizenship webpage, URL: http://www.usccb.org/faithfulcitizenship/

Also available at this URL are PDF documents containing:

(1) The text for a Bulletin Insert titled "The Challenge of Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship" which includes a nice section on the 7 Key themes of CST: "What does the Church Say about Catholic Social Teaching in the Public Square -- Seven Key Themes"

(2) Links to four other Bishops' Documents on politicians and the responsibilities of Catholics in public life.

(3) A link to a doctrinal note from the Vatican on some questions regarding "The Participation of Catholics in Political Life."

(4) A 5-page parish resource titled "Parish Planning Ideas for Parish Staffs and Parish Councils" (complete with a section on "Do's and Don'ts for Parishes")

A final quote from the press release:

The Faithful Citizenship statement concludes with a “call for a renewed kind of politics:

Focused more on moral principles than on the latest polls;
-- F
ocused more on the needs of the weak than on benefits for the strong;
-- Focused more on the pursuit of the common good than on the demands of narrow interests.

This kind of political participation,” the bishops claim, “reflects the social teaching of our Church and the best traditions of our nation.”

NOTE: To order distribution copies of the Statement or Bulletin Insert (when they become available) visit http://www.usccbpublishing.org/ and click on "New."

Recent Bishops' statements on Iraq

On November 13, 2007 the U.S. Catholic Bishops released a statement on "A Call for Bipartisan Cooperation on Responsible Transition in Iraq" by Bishop William S. Skylstad, President of the USCCB. The statement is available in PDF format at the USCCB Middle East webpage: http://www.usccb.org/sdwp/international/mideast.shtml

Also available is a document titled: "Questions and Answers on the War in Iraq" by Bishop Thomas G. Wenski, November 2007.

Want to know what else the U.S. Bishops have been saying about the war in Iraq and other issues related to Iraq? Click on Iraq on the USCCB's Middle East page and you will find all the statements issued since 1997, along with a link for: "Resources for Dioceses and Parishes"

If you would like to know more about the Catholic tradition with respect to war, including where the Bishops stood prior to the Iraq war, there is a very readable summary for Catholics in American Catholic.org's Catholic Update titled "What is Just War Today?" by Thomas A. Shannon ( from May 2004).

12th Annual Interfaith Thanksgiving Service

The Inter-religious Council of Southern AZ together with the Tucson Multi-Faith Alliance is sponsoring its 12th Annual Interfaith Thanksgiving Service.

The Service will be held at Streams in the Desert Lutheran Church, 5360 E. Pima (one block west of Craycroft Rd.)

The Service that will begin at 10:00 a.m. on Thanksgiving morning, Nov. 22nd will include prayers and music. The religions represented will be Zoroastrian, Hindu, Judaism, Islam, Sikh, Baha'i, Christian, (Catholic & Protestant). All are welcome to attend. An offering will be taken for the Community Food Bank as well as staple goods.

[from Joanne Welter, Diocesan Social Mission Office)

Friday, November 16, 2007

Learn About Fair Trade

Did you know that Catholic Relief Services (CRS) is a strong advocate and sponsor of fair trade practices via its CRS Fair Trade Program & CRS Fair Trade Network?

Find out how Fair Trade and Catholic Social Teaching are connected in this seven-page [pdf] resource from the CRS Fair Trade website.

This statement from the CRS Fair Trade website explains why purchasing fair trade products is an act of solidarity:

"The fair choice is the right choice. The daily decisions you make as a consumer can make a real, positive difference in the world. When you choose to buy fair trade products you are making a strong connection with hardworking, but impoverished workers around the world. Our CRS Fair Trade network guarantees fair wages to disadvantaged artisans, farmers and workers. It also provides the technical and financial assistance that poor people so desperately need but so rarely get in the conventional trading system. Team up with us. Buy fair trade products and you return human dignity to people just like you."

To learn more, and stay up to date on CRS Fair Trade issues, visit the CRS Fair Trade Blog.

  • Our regional "Just Coffee" (Cafe Justo) "fair trade +" coffee cooperative (based in Agua Prieta & Salvador Urbina, Chiapas) is part of the CRS Fair Trade Network! You can purchase Just Coffee at several parishes and other spots in Tucson (locations to be posted soon).

  • CRS promotes a delicious fair trade chocolate: "Divine Chocolate." Learn more about it at the Divine Chocolate Blog

  • CRS also supports artisans through their Work of Human Hands (craft) programs.

Stay tuned for more information about Fair Trade issues in Southern Arizona. To learn more about fair trade certification in general, plus find out about newly certified products, see the Fair Trade Certified TM website.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

SW Liturgical Conference theme is Eucharist & Justice

"Eucharist and Justice: Walking in Charity and Peace" will be the theme for the Southwest Liturgy Conference 2008 Study Week, which will be held in Tucson on January 16-19th, 2008 at the Hotel Arizona.

Here is a description of the conference theme:

We will examine more closely the relationship of our participation in the Eucharist and the Catholic Social teachings of the Church. How is our Eucharistic life exemplified in our daily living? Are we bringing forth the kingdom of justice, of love and of peace called for by Jesus in the Gospels? Our speakers, Most Reverend Gerald F. Kicanas, Sister Sarah Ann Sharkey, O.P., Most Reverend Wilton Gregory, Dr. Maxwell Johnson and more will help us explore this topic. Workshops will be provided for the on-going formation of clergy and lay liturgical ministers, catechists and Catholic School teachers as they foster good liturgy in the communities they serve.

Go to the SWLC website for more details and a downloadable [pdf] brochure with program.

Catholic Relief Services (CRS) Action Center

The CRS Action Center provides action alerts about peace and justice issues.

Take Action Now! Click on the latest action alerts listed below to find out how you can join CRS in advocating for issues in support of our brothers and sisters worldwide.

To automatically receive CRS action alerts, please sign up to become a member of the CRS legislative network by clicking here.

Feed the Hungry and Target Farm Supports
Call Your Senators to Support Important Farm Bill Provisions

Help Achieve Israeli-Palestinian Peace
Tell your Representative to sign the Ackerman/Boustany letter today!

Support Important Provisions of the Farm Bill
Your Senators Will be Voting Soon!

Farm Bill: Support Fairness and Justice
Urge your Senators to Support Important Provisions of the Farm Bill

Iraqi Refugees and Afghan Reconstruction
Defense Authorization Conference Committee to Determine Fate of Iraqi Refugees and Afghan Reconstruction

Support Israeli-Palestinian Peace
Urge Your Senators to support Resolution 321

Welcome to this Blog!

"Welcome Peace" by artist Sandra Ure Griffin

"Justice & Peace Shall Kiss"is a blog for communicating information about issues related to Peace, Justice, and Catholic Social Teaching in the Tucson / Southern Arizona area.
The URL for the blog is: http://psalm85.blogspot.com/

The blog's name is inspired by Psalm 85, verse 11:

Kindness and truth will meet; justice and peace shall kiss.
Truth will spring from the earth; justice will look down from heaven.

Stay tuned for future postings on local, national, and global peace and justice issues.

==> CLICK HERE to learn how to subscribe to get automatic "RSS/feeds" when a new blog message is posted.

This blog was created and is currently being maintained by Katie Hirschboeck (Our Mother of Sorrows Parish / Christian Life Commission) as an initiative of recent JustFaith graduates in the Tucson area. About Me
Information posted comes from Joanne Welter, Director of the Diocese of Tucson's Social Mission Office, from Katie, and other interested persons with kindred spirits