Ecumenical Advocacy Days: A Huge Success

Russell Testa Features

WASHINGTON – For the second year, friars and ministries of Holy Name Province joined with nearly 1,000 people from more than 33 denominations in the 2006 Ecumenical Advocacy Days for Global Peace with Justice here March 10-13.

These days were filled with prayer, inspiring talks and preaching, workshops on current issues of justice, opportunities to network across faiths, and lots of fun. The Advocacy Days culminated on March 13, when participants visited their Senators’ and Representatives’ offices on Capitol Hill to advocate for specific policies in support of persons who are poor and marginalized.

Holy Name Province again sponsored Ecumenical Advocacy Days, and it is fast becoming one of the primary vehicles for us to do effective advocacy on national political issues. This year, 10 of our ministries sent 24 friars and partners to participate. The HNP ministries represented were Immaculate Conception Parish (Durham, N.C.), St. Francis of Assisi Parish (Triangle, Va.), St. Anthony Shrine (Boston, Mass.), Voces Sin Fronteras/St. Paul Parish (Wilmington, Del.), St. Mary Parish (Pompton Lakes, N.J.), St. Anthony of Padua Parish (Camden, N.J.), St. Bonaventure Parish (Allegany, N.Y.), Holy Cross Parish (Callicoon, N.Y.), Siena College (Loudonville, N.Y.) and the Provincial Communications Office. Over the next several weeks, participants will be sharing their stories with the friars through HNP Today, so that we can get a better flavor of this important conference. In addition to our ministries’ participation, John O’Connorpresided at the Mass on Saturday evening.

As soon as we have the dates for next year’s program, we will let you know, so that we can have an even larger participation in this important event. An activity like Ecumenical Advocacy Days allows us to have ministries that can be truly effective in our advocacy.