Regis University Addresses Silence and Stigma of Suicide

During the month of September, Regis University participated in Suicide Prevention Month by addressing the silence and stigma associated with suicide through hosting a screening of “The S Word.” “The S Word” is a new feature-length film that addresses the topic of suicide and was screened on Monday, September 25. The documentary screening was followed by a reception with the film’s director, Lisa Klein, and other individuals who are responsible for bringing the film to Regis University.

The documentary “puts a human face on an often feared and misunderstood topic by sharing the stories of suicide-attempt survivors, their families and loved ones.” The documentary lays close to filmmaker Lisa Klein’s heart because she lost both her father and brother to suicide. Her goal was to create a film that would open much-needed conversation about suicide and boldly discuss. Hosting this film at Regis fits with university’s mission of “cura personalis or care for the entire person.” David Law, director of Student Activities and Leadership at Regis, explained how the university has “been expanding their vision of ‘caring for one another’ into new neighborhoods [and] sharing this movie helps in these efforts.”

“The S Word” is being screened throughout the United States and Canada at universities, community centers, film festivals, etc. Each screening is followed by a discussion with the director and local suicide-prevention experts. For a complete list of dates and venues, to learn how to host a screening or for general information about the film, please visit http://theswordmovie.com or contact Patricia Harris DiLeva at madpixfilms@gmail.com

To view the full article, please visit the Regis University News.

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Loras College Peace and Justice Week Utilizes the Power of Art

Loras College’s annual Peace and Justice Week, which was from September 17th – 25th, hosted a series of free events centered on the theme “Who is an American?” The week was meant to “highlight the importance of dialogue and learning other people’s stories, then leading to greater compassion and understanding.” One of the vocal points of the week-long celebration includes “A Peace of My Mind: American Stories,” an exhibit by renowned artist John Noltner and International Day of Peace speaker Jim Bear Jacobs, a member of the Stockbridge-Munsee Mohican Nation and the associate pastor of the Church of All Nations.

“A Peace of My Mind: American Stories” developed from Noltner’s 40,000-mile journey across the United States simply asking people, “What does peace mean to you?” The collection, which is comprised of fifty-eight people, is meant to encourage thoughtful dialogue and connects viewers to online content for additional videos, articles and discussion questions. A book that was based on Noltner’s display “has been awarded first place in the Beverly Hills Book Awards for Multicultural Nonfiction and runner-up for Photography/Art for the New England Book Festival.”

Click here to learn more about Noltner’s work displayed at Loras College’s Peace and Justice Week.

Saint Michael’s College Responds to Laudato Si’ with Eco-Justice Conference

Saint Michael’s College in Vermont responded to topics addressed in Laudato Si’, Pope Francis’s 2015 Encyclical, by hosting a diocesan eco-justice conference. “The Action for Ecological Justice: Celebrating a Year of Creation” was held on September 20th from 10 AM to 5 PM and included faculty, students and alumni.  As part of the Year of Creation, St. Michael’s college co-sponsored the event with the Diocese of Burlington.

The keynote address was given by former CEO and president of Catholic Relief Services, Dr. Carolyn Woo. It addressed “the connections between human action, climate change, environmental degradation, and human suffering” through Dr. Woo’s perspective of working with those most effected by climate change and environmental degradation.

Breakout sessions followed each address and covered a variety of topics found in Laudato Si’, from eco-spirituality to immigration and activism. The day closed with song and praise and included new music from the Diocese, including their new ‘Our Common Home’ collection. This event served as a reminder that we are all called to be global disciples who advocate and care for all of God’s creation.

To learn more about the conference click here.

Jesuit Network Commits to Dreamers

On Tuesday, September 5 the Trump Administration announced that they are repealing the DACA program-which will affect 800,000 undocumented young people.

Standing with the Dreamers, Fr. Timothy Kesicki, S.J., president of the Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States, released a letter from the Jesuits regarding this decision to repeal DACA. He said that “now more than ever, we commit ourselves to living out God’s law, which calls on us to love the stranger, remembering that our ancestors in faith were once strangers in a foreign land.” The letter speaks of the ways that Dreamers have positively affected Jesuit institutions and how these institutions will continue to support comprehensive immigration reform.

The Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities released a similar statement regarding the Jesuit mission to protect and commit to educating undocumented students.

Jesuit institutions across the nation have come together in solidarity with the Dreamers by hosting rallies and prayer vigils. Presidents of Jesuit universities have issued statements regarding DACA with many calling on Congress to act as soon as possible in order to provide a future for undocumented young persons.

To view the full article, click here.

Catholic Charities USA Responds to Hurricane Harvey

 

Image courtesy of AlexandriaNews.org

As the official domestic relief agency of the Catholic Church, Catholic Charities USA (CCUSA) is assisting with the relief of Hurricane Harvey along with local Catholic Charities Agencies in Texas. Sister Donna Markham OP, PhD, president and CEO of CCUSA was present in San Antonio on Labor Day to present nearly $2 million to aid local Catholic Charities agencies. All funds will be going directly to helping those who were affected by the hurricane in receiving basic supplies such as food and shelter.

Catholic Charities Disaster Recovery Team is also using their Disaster Relief Vehicle, presented to CCUSA just last week by the Ford Motor Company, to distribute supplies to impacted areas. Impacted agencies have also been asked to list their specific needs and then CCUSA will distribute the list in order to most effectively aid those impacted by Hurricane Harvey. If you would like to contribute to the recovery efforts, you may text CCUSADISASTER to 71777 to donate or here to donate online.

Read the full article and learn more about the work of Catholic Charities USA here.

Georgetown University Hosts Liturgy of Penance for Sale of Enslaved People

ICYMI: Earlier this year, Georgetown University hosted a Liturgy of Remembrance, Contrition and Hope as a moment to express contrition for the institutional sin of selling 272 enslaved people to raise money for preserve the university in 1838.

“Now, nearly 200 years later, we cannot heal from this tragic history alone. Many have confessed and labored to atone for this sin, but mostly within the confines of our own religious houses and apostolic works. Because we are profoundly sorry, we stand before God—and before you, the descendants of those whom we enslaved—and we apologize for what we have done and what we have failed to do,” Father Timothy Kesicki, S.J., president, of the Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States said.

Learn more about the event by reading the full article on the America website.