VeryTopShalom News North America  

An instrument of hope, formation, and action

concerning priority matters of social justice.

In This Issue
All Saints, All Souls
Thomas Berry
Arctic Refuge
SDG #6
St. Francis Xavier Cabrini
Migrants & Refugees
Global Education
Human Trafficking
World Day of the Poor
Catholic Nonviolence
Remembrance/Veteran's Day
Violence Against Women
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In our last newsletter, we highlighted the kick-off of Share the Journey, a two-year global initiative to highlight Catholic teaching on migration and affirm the Church's commitment to assist our migrant sisters and brothers. This month we are pleased to share our Central Pacific Province's immigration corporate stance. Similar to the stance previously taken by our Atlantic-Midwest Province, sisters affirmed their commitment to welcome, love, and stand in solidarity with migrants and refugees while advocating for a repair of our broken immigration system.  
Our internationality challenges us to witness to unity in a divided world, to develop a world vision and a sense of global responsibility.  Thank you for accompanying us on this journey! 
Shalom North America Contacts
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Integrity of Creation              

Remembering Eco-Martyrs and All of Creation on All Saints and All Souls       
Each year on November 1 and 2, Catholics around the world remember and pray for our loved ones and the community of saints who have died and returned home to God, Creator of Life. This year, the Global Catholic Climate Movement invites you to remember the countless number of martyrs who have been killed in their defense of the natural world and to pray for members of our Earth community that have gone extinct, and for places in the natural world that have been wounded by human choices. Prayer resource.    

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Integrity of Creation              

One with the Universe - Thomas Berry            
November 9 is the birthday of Thomas Berry, Catholic Passionist priest and ecotheologian. He is best known for proposing the idea that a deep understanding of the history and functioning of the evolving universe is a necessary inspiration and guide for our own effective functioning as individuals and as a species. "The divine communicates to us primarily through the language of the natural world. Not to hear the natural world is not to hear the divine." Prayer resource.  
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Integrity of Creation              

Say No to Drilling in Arctic Refuge   
Our friends with the Creation Justice Ministries and Interfaith Power and Light have issued an alert concerning the Trump Administration's interest in promoting oil exploration and drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Such drilling could exacerbate global warming, negatively impact this great wilderness and harm the native Gwich'in People who live in the area. Learn more/take action.  
Integrity of Creation              

CST and SDGs: Clean Water and Sanitation       
"All people have a right to safe drinking water. This is a basic human right and a central issue in today's world," says Pope Francis. The UN Sustainable Development Goal #6, calls for policies and practices to support systems that can provide clean water and adequate sanitation for all people, in a cost efficient and environmentally sustainable manner. Catholic social teaching (CST) reflection resource on the rights to water and to sanitation.
Human Life and Dignity               

Brothers and Sisters to Us         
On November 1, 1979 the U.S. Catholic Bishops put forth a pastoral letter on racism, reminding all Catholics that racism of any kind is a sin, that all of us - in some measure - are accomplices, and that there is a distinct relationship between racial and economic justice. Last August, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops established an Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism to focus on that issue and the urgent need to come together as a society to find solutions. How might we, as individuals and as community, find effective ways to address personal and community racism? 
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Human Life and Dignity              

Praying with DREAMers Week         
SSND joins with LCWR and other immigration advocates in urging your participation in Praying for DREAMers Week (10/29-11/4). During this week, we are encouraged to make a daily commitment to pray and promote passage of the Dream Act of 2017 - by writing a letter to the editor or calling / writing your members of Congress. Other suggestions and resources.

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Human Life and Dignity               

St. Frances Xavier Cabrini - 11/13
St. Frances Xavier Cabrini was an Italian-American religious sister who founded the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, a religious institute that was a major support for Italian immigrants. She is the first U.S. citizen to be named a saint and is the patron saint of immigrants. Prayer resource.
Human Life and Dignity               

Migrants and Hope - Pope Francis         
"Hope is the force that drives the hearts of those who depart, leaving home, their homeland, at times their relatives and families - I am thinking of the migrants - in search of a better life which is worthier of them and their loved ones. And it is also the impulse in the heart of those who welcome: the desire to encounter, to get to know each other, to dialogue. . . . Hope is the force that drives us "to share the journey," because the journey is made jointly . . . . Christ himself asks us to welcome our brother and sister migrants and refugees with open arms, with arms wide open." - Pope Francis, General Audience, September 27, 2017.  
For those in the U.S., here are three items you can contact Congress about to promote hope and support for migrants and refugees: admit more refugees than what the Trump administration has proposed; oppose the President's latest refugee ban which would block nearly half of all refugees admitted last year; extend Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for the countries of El Salvador, Honduras, and Haiti. 
Human Life and Dignity               

 Global Education Monitoring Report (GEM) Report 
The 2017 GEM Report evaluates the role of accountability in global education systems regarding achievement of the vision of UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4: ensuring inclusive, equitable and good-quality education and lifelong learning for all. Achieving SDG 4 is a shared responsibility between us all - governments, schools, teachers, parents, students, and the international community. The report cautions that accountability must be used to promote equity and quality, and not seen as an end in itself. Learn more.

Human Life and Dignity               

Operation Cross Country         
U.S. authorities recently announced they have rescued 84 children, one just 3 months old, and arrested 120 people in a nationwide sweep of child sex trafficking that exposed the growing use of technology by traffickers. Many of those arrested were advertising and selling children online for sex. The four-day sting involved coordinated operations in the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Thailand, the Philippines, and Cambodia. Learn more. Anti-human trafficking resources - U.S., Canada.
Human Life and Dignity               

First World Day of the Poor - 11/19    
In announcing the church's establishment of a World Day of the Poor (11/19), Pope Francis called on Christians around the world to serve the poor with concrete actions that address their daily needs. "If we truly wish to encounter Christ, we have to touch his body in the suffering bodies of the poor, as a response to the sacramental communion bestowed in the Eucharist," states Francis. "The Body of Christ, broken in the sacred liturgy, can be seen, through charity and sharing, in the faces and persons of the most vulnerable of our brothers and sisters." Prayer service, pastoral aid, artistic reflection
Peace and Non-Violence              

Catholic Nonviolence Initiative Webinar 
The Catholic Nonviolence Initiative was launched at the April 2016 Nonviolence and Just Peace conference in Rome. They are hosting a webinar on Tuesday, November 7 from 8 am - 9 am (Central) to provide an update on accomplishments from the past year and concrete steps we can take to build momentum going forward. Participation in the webinar is limited to 100 people - register here.
Peace and Non-Violence              

Remembrance/Veteran's Day - 11/11      
"We must remember. If we do not, the sacrifice of those one hundred thousand Canadian lives will be meaningless. They died for us, for their homes, families, and friends, for a collection of traditions they cherished and a future they believed in; they died for Canada. The meaning of their sacrifice rests with our collective national consciousness; our future is their monument." Read more. A Veteran's Day Reflection

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Peace and Non-Violence              

International Day for Tolerance - 11/16  
"In a world of diversity, tolerance is a prerequisite for peace," said Ms. Irina Bokova, the Director-General of UNESCO in remarks about the need for tolerance. "It is also a lever for sustainable development, as it encourages the construction of more inclusive and thus more resilient societies that are able to draw on the ideas, creative energy and talents of each of their members." Ms. Bokova reasons that restoring a culture of tolerance is key to countering a tendency toward isolationism, racism, and religious bigotry. Read more/take action.
Peace and Non-Violence              

International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women       
Violence against women and girls is a grave violation of human rights. Its impact ranges from immediate to long-term multiple physical, sexual and mental consequences for women and girls, including death. Violence not only has negative consequences for women but also their families, the community and the country at large. It has tremendous costs, from greater health care and legal expenses and losses in productivity, impacting national budgets and overall development. Read more, prayer/reflection resources
Violence Against Women - Haiti 
Violence Against Women - Haiti
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The SSND International Shalom Network witnesses to the Gospel with audacity and hope as we collaborate to build just relationships and respond to the urgent needs of our times. 

Shalom LogoShalom News North America is an e-publication of the Shalom North America Contacts (SNAC) of the School Sisters of Notre Dame - Arlene Flaherty, Ethel Howley, Jeanne Wingenter, Rose Mary Sander, and Tim Dewane. Your comments, suggestions, and feedback are always welcomed. Email us at

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