Published in the May-June 2014 NewsNotes.
1) Torture Awareness Month toolkit: Offered by the National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NRCAT), of which Maryknoll is a member, this resource helps community or congregations commemorate Torture Awareness Month, held each year in June. It includes ideas for what you can do during the month, including information on ordering "No Doubt, It Was Torture," NRCAT’s 11-minute film that explains why the faith community cares about making the information about torture public; worship resources, including sermon notes and prayers, meditations, and poems; a factsheet and educational resources on the Senate Intelligence Committee’s Torture Report; a bulletin insert with an interfaith prayer on one side and educational material on the other; a customizable poster to help you promote Torture Awareness Month; a petition to use to collect signatures in your congregation or community; and a link to NRCAT’s action center for you to share with your friends and community.
2) No More Deaths summer volunteer program: No More Deaths (NMD), which provides an ongoing humanitarian presence in the desert migration corridor south of Tucson, offers a volunteer program during the hottest and deadliest times of the year. Groups and individuals participating in this program provide direct aid in the U.S.–Mexico borderlands, where people migrating continue to unnecessarily suffer and die in staggering numbers. To learn more about the 2014 schedule and how to apply as an individual or group, visit the NMD website.
3) National Migration Conference, July 7-10: Hosted by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Migration and Refugee Services (USCCB/MRS), the Catholic Legal Immigration Network (CLINIC), and Catholic Charities USA (CCUSA), the National Migration Conference will be held in Washington, D.C. from July 7-10. The conference is intended to build the capacity of the Catholic Church and society to advance the life and dignity of the human person in our work with immigrants, migrants, refugees, unaccompanied migrant children, victims of human trafficking, and other vulnerable people on the move.
4) JustFaith Catholic, repackaged and renewed: The JustFaith adult faith education program will now be flexible and adaptable for busy adults and parish communities. The program consists of four phases, each with six sessions (two hours each, with group dialogue and prayer) and an immersion experience (participants are asked to commit to all four phases). It includes opening and commissioning retreats; intriguing books and videos that expose the deeper implications of poverty in the world; and a small faith-sharing group that is connected by sacred listening, dialogue, and trust. After the program graduation, there is a recommended three-week discernment period for continued individual and group mission exploration.
5) Joy of the Gospel Study and Action Guide: NETWORK Lobby, a national Catholic social justice lobby, has prepared a24-page PDF resource to help Catholics (along with Christians and other faith-curious social justice-seekers) study the words of Pope Francis, specifically his first papal exhortation Evangelii Gaudium (Joy of the Gospel). The guide, which may be used individually or in a group, has two parts: study and action. The Study Guide summarizes each section of Joy of the Gospel and offers analysis and questions for reflection, while the Action Guide offers a variety of ways you and your faith community can join in efforts to live the "Joy of the Gospel."