The following is a statement by the Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns made the day after the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
We congratulate Donald Trump on winning the 2016 U.S. presidential election. We are concerned, however, about divisive and sometimes violent rhetoric used by the candidates and some voters during the campaigns and we invite President-elect Trump to commit to dialogue and inclusiveness during his presidency.
“As a people of faith we believe in love, not hate,” Gerry Lee, director of the Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns, said. “We believe in the redemptive power of nonviolence and compassion and we come together as children of God facing this new chapter in history for the United States and the world in hope.”
For more than one hundred years in dozens of countries, Maryknoll missioners have joined in the struggles for justice of poor and indigenous communities, migrants, refugees, and those on the margins of society. As strangers ourselves, we have been welcomed, and we have embraced new cultures and languages. Even during times of injustice and violence, we have witnessed the triumph of the human spirit and presence of Jesus among us.
The Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns works to clarify the links between the experiences of Maryknoll missioners in dozens of countries around the world, usually with the most impoverished and marginalized communities, and systems and structures that create or perpetuate poverty, human rights violations, conflict, and environmental destruction.
Throughout 2016 and beyond, we will continue to bring the deep experience and authentic voice of Maryknoll missioners to policy makers in Congress, the White House, the United Nations, other governments, international financial institutions, and the corporate world.
We will continue to work for social justice by advocating for comprehensive immigration reform and an end to family detention; for the integrity of creation by advocating for the United States to uphold commitments made in the Paris climate agreement; and for peace by advocating for the United States to uphold commitments made in the Iran nuclear deal and for the Catholic Church to increase investments in peacemaking and alternatives to violence.
As we enter this new moment and search for signs of hope, we recall the words of Dorothy Day, who was born on November 8 – Election Day – 119 years ago:
“If we had faith in what we were doing, making our protest against brutality and injustice, then we were indeed casting our seeds, and there was the promise of the harvest to come.”