November 27, 2017
|Feast of All Franciscan Saints
November 29 is observed as the Feast of All Franciscan Saints/Saints of the Seraphic Order. The final rule of the Franciscan friars was approved on this day in 1223.
Let us open ourselves to God in the example of St. Francis, who prayed to feel Jesus suffering and
his love of Christ.
| The Dwelling Place: 40 Years 'Leading Women from Homeless to Home'
By: Dan Pietrafesa, Catholic New York
Reprinted with permission
Sister Nancy Chiarello OSF reflects back with mixed emotions as The Dwelling Place of New York marked its 40th anniversary this month.
"I always think back when we say we're here 40 years. Part of me becomes saddened by it, because the fact is we're needed 40 years later," Sr. Nancy told CNY. "But then I have to look at the positive side of it, which is for 40 years God has been very good to us."
The Dwelling Place has been a home to about 3,000 homeless women since opening its door on October 4, 1977 with a mission of "leading women from homeless to home."
Sister Nancy was one of five Franciscan Sisters of Allegany working as nurses at St. Clare's Hospital in Manhattan. From their apartment, they would see homeless women search for food in garbage cans and eventually asked the leaders of their congregation for approval to open a homeless shelter for women.
"When we started, I thought we'd be here a couple of years and the problem would be settled. Forty years later, the problems are worse," said Sister Nancy, who remembered the shelter housing up to 60 homeless women on cold nights back in the early days.
| Franciscan Center Holds Fourth Annual Golf Tournament in Support of First Responders' Program
By: Denise Bunk-Hatch, Communications Director
The Franciscan Center of Tampa held its Fourth Annual Golf Classic on Monday, November 13. The successful fundraiser supports the Center's First Responder Trauma Program, which provides healing and support for police, firefighters, and other emergency personnel suffering from post traumatic disorders.
Sr. Anne Dougherty, President of the Franciscan Center, said it was a beautiful day and a successful event, with a full slate of players (144 in all) and lots of community support.
A silent auction was held in addition to the tournament, and all proceeds from the event go toward scholarships to allow interested parties to take part in the First Responder Program. Recently, the Center has seen increased interest in participation from agencies such as the FBI, and locations as distant as Ohio and Virginia. "Word has definitely spread within the police community," Sr. Anne said of the program.
| COP 23 Climate Talks - Global Catholic Climate Movement (GCCM)
By: Gloria Oehl OSF
On November 14, Sr. Gloria Oehl participated in a Zoom call from the
GCCM in Bonn
Germany. They have been meeting with various parties at this 23rd International Meeting on Climate Change including faith-based and interfaith groups. As one member stated, "We can make a difference by standing together."
They stressed that we need to see climate change as (quoting Pope St. John Paul II) "
moral crisis which requires a spiritual awakening in us."
It is also a justice issue, as those responsible for most of the increase in global temperature are powerful, and those who suffer are the most vulnerable and poor. Effects
of the climate
being shown in food insecurity and migration. The Paris Climate Agreement is not enough. Some solutions lie in concrete actions at the local level.
They noted an example of the Monterey Diocese in California
working at all levels to use alternative energy. Our Canticle Farm in Allegany, NY, has been using sustainable farming to help feed the hungry in the Allegany/Olean area. Recently, our Brazilian sisters began using some of the property at their central house,
, for sustainable farming and teaching sustainability to the local people. Plans are in progress to develop the old Motherhouse property in a sustainable way.
On a more personal level, each of us needs to see how we can live a more sustainable lifestyle.
Visit the GCCM website
for Advent - click on Menu for special resources and information about the Laudato Si pledge.
"On climate change, there is a clear, definitive and ineluctable ethical imperative to act." - Pope Francis
| Motherhouse Set to Host 15th Annual Shower for Mary
The Franciscan Sisters of Allegany will once again open their doors to the community in support of families in need.
The 15th Annual Shower for Mary is scheduled for Thursday, December 7, at 7 p.m. in the St. Elizabeth Motherhouse chapel. All proceeds from the event will benefit the St. Gianna Molla Pregnancy Outreach Center of the Diocese of Buffalo. The center "serves life by providing material, emotional, and spiritual support to single mothers, fathers, and young families in need from pregnancy through the first years of life."
All are welcome to attend the shower and bring with them a wrapped or bagged gift such as diapers, baby and toddler clothing, baby wipes, sleepers, and blankets to be donated to the St. Gianna Molla Center. Light refreshments will be served following the ceremony.
The annual blessing and lighting of the crèche at the base of the Motherhouse hill will take place immediately prior to the Shower for Mary, at 6:30 p.m.
| Overnight at the Mountain
Sisters Liz Schumacher and Barbara Bartkowiak participated in the biannual St. Bonaventure Women's overnight at Mt. Irenaeus November 18-19, 2017. The event included prayer, reflection, and sharing of individual faith journeys and struggles with 21 young women from the university.
| To be Loved as to Love
By: Judith Terrameo OSF
The following is the ninth in a series of reflections by the Franciscan-Clarian Spirituality Committee on the Peace Prayer of St. Francis. These reflections will be shared in future editions of the e-newsletter.
An expert in the law tried to test Jesus by asking him what was the greatest commandment in the Law of Moses. Jesus summarized the entire law of God: "You shall love the
your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great
commandment. And the second is like it: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'" (Matt 22:37-40)
For Jesus, to love your neighbor as you love yourself was to practice justice towards all sisters and brothers. In this particular time,
shouldn't this mandate be
about our care and treatment of the immigrants in our midst. There has been a lot of negative news this year about immigrants. They are deemed dangerous outsiders who have no place in American society. Many Americans today want to keep them out, forgetting our shared heritage. We fear that where there is one immigrant, there are many more - "they are taking over; threatening our economy." We fear them as they bring ideologies and values with them that we don't appreciate, because we do not understand them. We fear these immigrants because we are alarmed by the fact that they appear to receive what is rightfully ours. Consequently, the practice of justice begotten by love is twisted into disordered prejudice against
As Franciscans, following in the footprints of Francis and Clare, may we always
to love our neighbor(s) as we love ourselves!
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December 1, 2017 - Winter edition
December 6, 2017 - December e-newsletter
Due to the timing of Christmas on the fourth Monday of December, there will be only one edition of the e-newsletter next month. That issue will be released on December 11.