Justice and Peace Initiatives

HNP Communications Around the Province

NEW YORK —The Province’s Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation Directorate met on Jan. 14 at the Provincial Office here to review its work, discuss this year’s Local Contacts Retreat, finalize plans for a February Web conference and other topics. 

Local Contacts Retreat
Again this year, the Province will host its JPIC Local Contacts Retreat, set for June 25 to 27 at St. Francis Springs Prayer Center in Stoneville, N.C. Each ministry of Holy Name Province is strongly encouraged to send at least one representative from its JPIC ministry. This person is normally the JPIC local contact, but an alternative designee or two are welcome if schedules do not permit the local contact to participate.

On a yet-to-be-determined Thursday in February, the JPIC will host a Web conference to help religious educators and catechist in HNP ministries better integrate JPIC into their curriculum. The first Web conference will focus on the care for creation and help lead to efforts around Earth Day in April. The conference is a pilot for other similar events in the future and will occur at the end of February. More information will be provided. 

Also discussed at last week’s meeting was an idea to raise awareness of climate change. Russell Testa said, “Since climate change reforms is moving slowly in the U.S. Congress and Pope Benedict has invited Catholics to stand with persons who are poor in solidarity with creation, Franciscans can help jump-start the efforts for reform. The possibilities are great for change, and Franciscans need to be at the heart of the movement.” Testa is director of the Province’s JPIC Office.

Holy Land Peace Process
In the Holy Land peacemaking process, the JPIC team continues to form relationships and provide opportunities for pilgrimages.  It is awaiting details from the Tent of Nations to determine what ministry sites might be asked to hold a public event. 

In addition, Testa said the JPIC Directorate is developing plans for 2010 and beyond. They include, he said, “A plan that allows us to move forward and complete a budget for FY 2011, to develop a social analysis in preparation for Chapter 2011, as well as to finetune a set of additional evaluative elements for the JPIC Office and directorate allowing for a clearer set of responsibilities and an even better flow between the JPIC office and directorate.”

As the Province’s JPIC leaders plan for the future, the Holy Name Communications Office is working with them to re-launch the Justice and Peace page of HNP.org with more content. 

Testa is in the midst of visiting all HNP ministry sites to evaluate various JPIC programs within the Province. He welcomes questions and ideas from friars and their partners-in-ministry and can be reached by phone at 202-527-7561.