Justice Matters

In Justice Matters, sisters find their grounding in Catholic Social Teaching.

Sisters accompany Potawatomi people

On Sept. 4, 1838, 859 members of the Native American Potawatomi Nation began a forced relocation march from their home near Twin Lakes, Indiana, to Kansas. Three years later, on June 29, 1841, four Religious of the Sacred Heart departed from St. Louis to found a school for native girls at the Jesuit mission in Sugar Creek, Kansas, where the Potawatomi had ultimately settled. Every five years since 1983, the Potawatomi have organized a caravan to retrace the Trail of Death. 

A world without gender

The Catholic Church has never opposed science, but then what prevents the church from embracing modern science? Pope Pius XII opened the door to evolution in his 1950 encyclical Humani generis, and Pope John Paul II spoke of the need to reconcile science and religion, saying they can mutually enrich one another.

Advocating for porters in Ghana

Female head porters are unskilled, uneducated migrant women, usually from poverty-stricken families of northern Ghana who move down to southern Ghana for work. They generally live in very poor conditions and lack social protection; they are exposed to all forms of sexual and physical exploitation, resulting in unplanned pregnancies and children being raised on the street. Because their job involves lifting and carrying heavy goods for long distances, most of them suffer physical ailments.

Evolution and social justice, nature itself

The problem with social justice is that we have made it a human work when in fact social justice is, in a sense, a definition of nature itself. Social justice cannot exist as an independent phenomenon because it is the underlying principle of all phenomena. By highlighting social justice as a particular area of concern, we unwittingly confess our deep disconnect from nature.

Stories of statelessness

Malaysia is the destination country of thousands of migrant persons known as Rohingya, an ethnic group long settled but denied citizenship in their birth country of Myanmar. The Rohingya ethnicity implies Muslim religious identification, making them a double minority in Myanmar. This column reflects the experiences of our Good Shepherd Sisters' shelters in Malaysia, giving a small glimpse of the vast perils and occasional small victories of the human spirit told through stories.

Love in action: keeping people safe

Dorothy Day frequently quoted Fyodor Dostoevsky's Brothers Karamazov: "Love in action is a harsh and dreadful thing compared to love in dreams." Southside Presbyterian Church in Tucson strives for love in action. Its website says it is a community of faith, hope, love and witness in the borderlands, briefly citing a history of racial integration and a vision of serving all. I visited the church in late April with a Loretto Community delegation to the border.