Social Justice Ministry
What is the mission of the Collaborative’s Social Justice Ministry?
Based in Catholic social teaching, and rooted in the Gospel, the mission of this ministry is to answer the call of our baptism to know God in our brothers and sisters, to love them and to serve them. We wish to carry out Jesus’ command to ‘love one another as I have loved you’ by creating opportunities for all parishioners to provide direct outreach and service to those in need, and to advocate for policies and programs that bring about justice and peace.
For more information, please contact your Parish Office, or CLICK HERE TO COMPLETE A VOLUNTEER FORM
Please visit our Diaper Pantry page and learn more about this much-needed ministry!
POWIR: People Organized to Welcome Immigrants and Refugees
“Let us open our heart to refugees; let us make their sorrows and their joys our own; let us learn courageous resilience from them!” (Pope Francis)
On October 2, the Collaborative heard an excellent presentation on POWIR (People Organized to Welcome Immigrants and Refugees), by Marjean Perhot, Director of Immigration and Refugees at Catholic Charities, who shared with us the following:
- 79.5 million people worldwide are in need of protection: 1 person is forcibly displaced every three seconds
- Threats to a safe home include war, persecution, poverty, and climate change
- Two-thirds of all refugees are from five countries: Syria, Venezuela, Afghanistan, South Sudan, and Myanmar.
- The U.S Council of Catholic Bishops launched POWIR to develop a base of support, mentorship, and welcome for newcomers- that is, to live out social justice. POWIR is overseen and supported through Diocesan Catholic Charities offices.
- Southeastern Mass POWIR is already helping multiple families to resettle in the area. The refugee list is long and growing due to recent events in Afghanistan.
- A very special guest at the October 2 presentation was Deeqo Aaden, a native of Somalia who arrived in the U.S. from Egypt in late July with her eight-year-old son Masoud and has resettled in Plymouth with the assistance of Steve’s POWIR team. She spoke of the hope she now has for her and her son. She lives with the Songa family originally from the Congo has also resettled recently from Uganda, who is being supported through St. Kateri’s Pantry, the diaper ministry, and PCC Social Justice ministry. And, our newest neighbors include Layth, an Iraqi interpreter who worked with U.S. forces for many years, his wife Zainab, and their two children.
Fr. Joe and our Collaborative’s Social Justice Ministry has committed to support the effort of the Southeastern MA POWIR effort, through PCC POWIR. There are so many ways to help: fundraising, transportation, housing needs, educational support, financial donations, and more. If you can lend a hand, please contact Patty Kean, [email protected]. Watch for more information, updates, and opportunities to assist!
The Social Justice Committee Book Discussion
This past September, on Thursday evenings from 7:00 – 8:30 pm, six people participated in a book discussion on Let Us Dream: The Path to a Better Future, conversations of Pope Francis with journalist and biographer, Austen Ivereigh, on the COVID crisis and our collective future. In these conversations, Pope Francis speaks to those of us in the Catholic Church and also to everyone seeking the common good for society and the planet. Each week, we took turns sharing what passages resonated, challenged, or confused us, and this created a very rich learning experience. In addition, we had the pleasure of getting to know who we worship with on a deeper level, one way to make our Collaborative worship and actions much more meaningful.
Pope Francis is challenging us be church in action and the first action we need to take is to see more clearly! Those of us who are privileged with food, housing, education, work, healthcare, security must step out of our comfort to really see the humanity in those who are living on the margins. Pope Francis challenges us next to redesign our economies so that every single person “has access to a dignified existence while protecting and regenerating the natural world.” Pope Francis warns and advises us to see sin as the “rejection of limits that love requires.” We have to limit our excesses in the name of love. We have to limit our blindness and prejudices to see clearly the dignity and need of our neighbors. The Pope also reminds us that this will take humility and plenty of humor!
The group had a great time discussing this challenging wisdom. And we reminded each other weekly as we did so, “Who am I to judge?”