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Monthly Message June 2018

Mary Luke Tobin

We celebrated Pentecost a few weeks ago.

The power of the Holy Spirit pushed, enhanced the apostles to go all over the world to bring the Good News. WUCWO women commit to be carriers of “living water” wherever people are thirsty for it; where they are not respected, where life is not preserved, where the human dignity is trampled, where people are suffering because of hunger, conflicts, persecutions, and wars.

Our decision to continue in this path is inspired by the Holy Spirit and it is also the result of the love we experience in the Church and that “makes us rise above ourselves, envy closes us in on ourselves. True love values the other person’s achievements. It does not see him or her as a threat. It frees us from the sour taste of envy. It recognizes that everyone has different gifts and a unique path in life. So it strives to discover its own road to happiness, while allowing others to find theirs. In a word, love means fulfilling the last two commandments of God’s Law: “You shall not covet your neighbour’s house; you shall not covet your neighbour’s wife, or his manservant, or his maidservant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbour’s” (Ex 20:17). Love inspires a sincere esteem for every human being and the recognition of his or her own right to happiness. I love this person, and I see him or her with the eyes of God, who gives us everything “for our enjoyment” (1 Tim 6:17). As a result, I feel a deep sense of happiness and peace. This same deeply rooted love also leads me to reject the injustice whereby some possess too much and others too little. It moves me to find ways of helping society’s outcasts to find a modicum of joy. That is not envy, but the desire for equality.” (AL 95-96)

Unfortunately, individualism and selfishness are prevailing, especially among the rich countries, in this globalisation of indifference and “a “throw away” culture which is now spreading. It is no longer simply about exploitation and oppression, but something new. Exclusion ultimately has to do with what it means to be a part of the society in which we live; those excluded are no longer society’s underside or its fringes or its disenfranchised – they are no longer even a part of it. The excluded are not the “exploited” but the outcast, the “leftovers””. (EG 53)

In spite of this, we want to offer our witness, bringing “living water” so that justice and peace may win in all realities, starting from those families which are called to face many challenges in different fields. The witness chosen for this month is an American woman who worked hard for the kingdom of our Lord and didn’t stop in the face of difficulties.

 

Prayer - Psalm 84

How lovely is your dwelling place, Lord Almighty!
2 My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the Lord;
my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God.
3 Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself,
    where she may have her young—
a place near your altar, Lord Almighty, my King and my God.
4 Blessed are those who dwell in your house;  they are ever praising you.[c]

5 Blessed are those whose strength is in you, whose hearts are set on pilgrimage.
6 As they pass through the Valley of Baka, they make it a place of springs;
    the autumn rains also cover it with pools.
7 They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion.

8 Hear my prayer, Lord God Almighty; listen to me, God of Jacob.
9 Look on our shield, O God; look with favor on your anointed one.

10 Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere;
I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God
    than dwell in the tents of the wicked.
11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor;
no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.

12 Lord Almighty, blessed is the one who trusts in you.

 

Witness - Sister Mary Luke Tobin

A member of the Sisters of Loretto, Sister Mary Luke Tobin is a catalyst for renewal in religious communities, a worker for peace and justice worldwide, a promoter of equality for women, a mentor of women and men of all faiths, and an advocate for their empowerment. She was one of only 15 women worldwide to be invited to the Second Vatican Council in Rome. She has traveled and stood with others in Northern Ireland, El Salvador, California, Colorado, and Washington, DC, on behalf of various issues and struggles. Tobin visited Saigon in 1970 to promote peace in Vietnam. She also participated in international hearings on disarmament in Amsterdam. In 1993 she joined a delegation that studied the rise of neo-Nazism in Germany. Tobin has recorded her experiences in the book Hope is an Open Door and in numerous periodical articles.

 

Further readings

Amoris Laetitia 95- 96

Evangelii  Gaudium 180 – 183

Social Teaching of the Church 66-68

 

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