WASHINGTON, D.C. — Holy Name Province friars and partners in ministry joined with about 700 people from more than 36 denominations across the country in the Ecumenical Advocacy Days (EAD) for Global Peace with Justice here in early March.
The days were filled with prayer, inspiring talks, preaching, workshops on current issues of justice, opportunities for networking, fellowship across all faiths, and lots of fun, according to Russell Testa, director of the Province’s Office for Justice, Peace & Integrity of Creation.
EAD Participants Advocate for Change
The Advocacy Days culminated on March 10 with participants visiting Capitol Hill to advocate for a change in U.S. budget priorities. The hope is to develop a more human and ecologically-centered approach to international and domestic security, according to Testa.
Franciscans represented more than 10 percent of the advocates in Washington, D.C., with Holy Name Province again sponsoring EAD. “EAD continues to be a primary vehicle through which we are able to do effective advocacy on national political issues,” said Testa.
Franciscan Participation Impressive
This year, 12 Provincial ministries sent 41 friars and partners to participate, including Immaculate Conception Parish, Durham, N.C.; St. Francis of Assisi Parish, Triangle, Va.; St. Mary Parish, Pompton Lakes, N.J.; St. Anthony of Padua Parish, Camden, N.J.; St. Patrick-St. Anthony Parish, Hartford, Conn.; St. Camillus Parish, Silver Spring, Md.; Our Lady of Holy Angels Parish, Little Falls, N.J.; Holy Name Parish, New York, N.Y.; St. Clares Parish, Buffalo, N.Y.; St. Francis Springs Prayer Center, Stoneville, N.C.; St. Mary of the Angels Parish, Anderson, S.C.; and Siena College in Loudonville, N.Y.
Over the next several weeks, participants will share their stories through HNP Today. Shown in the photo above are Testa, second from right, with William “Jud” Weiksnar, OFM, of Camden, N.J., and other EAD attendees.
Next year’s EAD conference is scheduled for March 13-16, Testa said.