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Edition No. 130 — July 6, 2020 
Saint Joseph Villa
Zoom—Everybody Has a Right to Live
June 2020
Julie Gabell, SSJ Associate
This week’s Villa Zoom meeting was right on target. It was timely, thought-provoking, and long overdue. Mirroring the “Poor People’s Campaign,” a national call for moral revival, its agenda high-lighted critical racial inequities as it dove-tailed several recent gatherings throughout the United States.

What was especially notable during this week’s meeting was the evident “buy in” of the 20 Zoomers as they tuned in to the many struggles faced by poor white people, persons of color, and other minorities. Topics such as poverty, systemic racism, voting rights, ecological devastation, health, and war economy laid bare a long list of roadblocks faced by the poor and disadvantaged in our society.

Systemic racism with offshoots such as economic disempowerment and inequitable voting rights held center stage as we faced the hard facts surrounding life below the poverty threshold of $30,718 and a minimum wage scale of $7.25 per hour. This, coupled with the fact that over 10 million people are without housing while there are 18 million vacant homes across America, is unconscionable. 

The poor we have always with us,  but their economic disadvantage hobbles them in ways we can only begin to comprehend. Today, more than 52,000 citizens (most of them black) are denied voting rights due to current or prior imprisonment. Four hundred and eighty-two thousand children live in food insecure households that jeopardize their health and scholastic success. Epidemics that reflect patterns of exclusion and discrimination break out along divides in our society, while deep social and economic failures reinforce existing inequities in health care. Militarism and violence, landmarks of U.S. policy both at home and abroad, invest in a culture of war rather than a culture of care.

How very evident it is that we, as citizens, must re-examine our own priorities and the policies of our nation? Now more than ever, we must step up to the plate and take action. Villa Zoomers are seeking ways to do this, for everybody has a right to live. We are all one.
Motherhouse and College Communities
Support Racial Equality
June 26, 2020
Early on the morning of June 26th, sisters gathered at the Germantown Avenue entrance of the Motherhouse to pray for an end to racism and for all those affected by racial injustice. The Sisters of Saint Joseph and the Chestnut Hill College Communities hung a banner in support of racial equality. 

Together they prayed:

God of Heaven and Earth, you created one human family and endowed each person with great dignity.
Aid us, we pray, in overcoming the sin of racism. Grant us your grace in eliminating this blight from our hearts, our communities, our social and civil institutions.
Fill our hearts with love for you and our dear neighbor so that we may work with you in healing our land from racial injustice.
We have prayed in your name, O God, and now, with changed hearts, let us move our feet to action. Amen.
Saint Joseph Villa
National Smile Day
June 15, 2020
National Smile Day is celebrated each year on June 15th across the world. The day serves as a perfect excuse for people to leave their worries behind and smile through the day. The day is dedicated to making people realize the importance of smiling. 

As a way to celebrate National Smile Day, since the sisters at the Villa are not yet stepping out due to the coronavirus outbreak, they took to social media to share pictures with others. These pictures will help you to smile as well as put on a smile on the face of all who see the them. 
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"With the help of God's grace and in fidelity to our founder's expressed wish, we live and work lovingly among all persons with a special preference for those who are poor, which calls us wherever we are to be in union with them."
                                        — SSJ Constitutions #21
Editor, Sister Carole Pollock SSJ | 215.248.7269 | |