FAN to Develop Economic Recovery Agenda

HNP Communications Franciscan World

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Franciscan Action Network (FAN) issued an end-of-the-year e-letter in December, recapping its work in the past year.

Among its outstanding achievements were several projects, highlighted by Russell Testa, FAN executive director.

In December, FAN staff met with others to develop an economic recovery agenda rooted in the Franciscan tradition. The meeting took place at the Province’s Holy Name College in nearby Silver Spring, Md., and included Joseph Rozansky, OFM, of the Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) Office in Rome; Richelle Friedman of the Coalition on Human Needs; Thom Shellabarger of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops; Tom Nairn, OFM, of the Catholic Heath Association; and David Couturier, OFM, Cap., of St. Mary’s Seminary & University.

Participants shared perspectives on the state of the economy and ways that Franciscans can respond, according to FAN’s Larry Janezic, OFM. The group also met with Reva Price, adviser to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) at the U.S. Capitol.

“FAN expressed hope for an economic recovery effort that addresses the problems of those who are struggling and most in need,” said Fr. Janezic. Price spoke of Pelosi’s efforts, especially in developing and passing economic stimulus legislation in anticipation of a new Congress and a new president.

FAN leaders are proud of its recent membership accomplishments. Since FAN was launched in March 2008, 1,000 people have registered with the network. More than 200 new Franciscans and Franciscan-hearted people have signed up during the most recent drive that began last month.

“New memberships strengthen our voice for social transformation,” said Testa.

He added: “While this is great progress, we still need everyone to do their part. We ask each of you to invite three or more persons to be a part of our efforts to bring a Franciscan-inspired moral vision to the work of social change. Inviting others is very easy; it takes less than five minutes. The value of your action is immeasurable; the more people we have as a part of FAN, the greater the opportunity for significant social impact.”

The photo above shows, from left, Larry Janezic, Reva Price, Russ Testa, and Joseph Macaluso, OFM, a resident of Holy Name College.