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Mission Update

United States Volume 17, Issue 3

Catholic Mission Association Fall 2008


The Family of God, CAM 3, COMLA 8 That
In this month
The Gift of the Holy Spirit sent to the ends of the earth. 1 of Jesus who calls, and in the
to Humanity love of the disciple moved to dedicated to the
Once again, we have experienced
make the commitment to join Missions every
The Third American Missionary Pentecost, a Church, a commu-
Him in the adventure of mission.
Congress (CAM 3, COMLA 8), nity of disciples, gathered with Christian community
The disciple assumes a lifestyle
took place in Quito, Ecuador, Mary our Mother, reborn and
known as the Center of the sent again to all the earth. We
that is provocative and counter- may feel the
cultural, ready to become small
World. This event brought to- celebrate the experience of unity
and poor like Jesus. Such disci-
need to share
gether women and men disciples that the Spirit has fomented
from the ends of the earth in a among us in the diversity of peo-
pleship springs from Jesus capti- in the Churchs
vating questions: Do you love
Paschal feast celebrating Gods ples, races and cultures. United universal
me more than these? Are you
passing through the midst of the in the midst of a fragmented
willing to follow me, dedicating mission with
People of God. The Congress world, we have created a unity
your life to the cause of the King- prayers,
gathered a portion of the human that courageously lives what it
dom? We discover that Jesus
family, united in their passion for also proclaims and gathers up the sacrifices and
has called us with an impressive
mission in the world. fragments, creating multiple ex-
authority and freedom. material help.
periences of communion in our
We are the Church in America
world. We learn to be disciples of Jesus Benedict XVI
and we want to feel the heart-
in his quiet baptism in the midst
beat of the world. We have lis- In This Issue
of the people. We learn from his
tened and we have learned. Our
tenderness and compassion for Message to the Human 1
understanding of the message of
others, from his way of touching Family
the Gospel has grown broader
the heart and communicating the
and universal; our tent has been
Good News of liberation. We From the Director 2
enlarged. The Holy Spirit has
become entranced by the beauty
inspired us to stand in unity and
of his transfigured face and its
to share our faith with Asia, Af- From the President 2
reflection in human dignity. We
rica, Europe and Oceana, to work
We are a pilgrim church, born in learn to see human plans and
together for the Reign of God.
the mission of the Son and the concepts in the light of God, to Book Reviews 4
We have seen the missionary
Holy Spirit, following the plan of love the salvation that brings
community come to life, a com-
the Father, a sign of love in ac- humanization and life in abun- Platform for the Common Center
munity at once one and universal,
tion. We are radical disciples, dance. From Jesus we learn how Good
a community for all of humanity.
attentive to the crucible of our to pray, suffer and love, contem-
In this Congress, as in a conti- reality and ready to respond with plating his crucified body and by Cam 3All American 5, 6
nental Upper Room, we have felt tenderness, love and action so standing with todays victims. Mission Congress Collage
the force of the Holy Spirit who that our prophecy will be credi- We become disciples who savor
has given the Church the gifts ble. joy, beauty and resurrection.
and charisms to spread the Good USCMA Conference 7
Easter Discipleship begins with We want to be disciples, con-
News of salvation to each person,
love of Jesus and the experi- stantly listening and learning Orbis Books 8
and especially to those who do
ence of the Spirit with faithful, adventurous crea-
not know Christ or who have
Discipleship begins with the love tivity. We want to follow Jesus, Resources & Upcoming 8
forgotten him. We have been
contd on p. 3
US Catholic Mission Association
Mission Update Fall 2008

From the Director From the President of the Board:

Rev. Michael Montoya, MJ Mission Update. Sr. Mary McGlone, CSJ
In other parts of the Mission Update, you will
The more we follow what is happening find references to CAM 3, COMLA 8, that
November is election month for us in the
around us, the stronger is the challenge for took place in Quito in August. Our U.S. delega-
US. Surely many of you have been follow-
us missioners to continue proclaiming the tion of about 50 people had a good number of
ing the Presidential Debate. Beyond rhetoric
Good News. How does one do it in the USCMA members in it. What an experience!
and promises, as missioners we need to
midst of the financial crisis that is hitting
engage with our global perspectives and put Trying to describe it, I commented that it was
hard even our own organizations and reli-
a human face to many of the issues that are characterized by charismatic excitement and
gious communities? How does one pro-
presented before us. Beyond political punch Latin American spirituality and theology - with
claim the Good News in the midst of the
lines and partisan slogans, the Catholic the full participation of 3000 people, young, old
burning of Christians and Christian
Social Teachings and the Scriptures allow and in-between.
Churches in Orissa, India? How does one
us to sift through the muddling of issues
journey with a sense of hope knowing our These congresses began in 1977, when Mexico
presented before us. Together with many
own planet is in peril? How can one pro- hosted the first Latin American Mission Con-
national organizations, ratified by a delega-
claim hope in the midst of poverty and gress (COMLA). Since then, every five years
tion of 800 people from all over the country,
food shortages resulting in riots and vio- has seen another, the last three of which have
we present to you the Platform for the Com-
lence all over the world? How can one
mon Good as our Periodic Paper. We do included the U.S. and Canada, thus being called
speak of a journey of hope in the midst of
hope that this tool will help us to decide the Congreso Americano Misionero.
this global migration phenomenon that
beyond simple party affiliations and con- One of the most impressive things about this
puts lives at risk and separates family
sider the voice of faith-filled citizens. Let
members? It seems like we have more last conference was the preparation that most of
this be our agenda as we look into the elec-
questions than answers. And I am sure that the countries had done. Before the delegations
tions. Let this agenda be our candidate. Let
you can add more to the list I have pre- were chosen, dioceses and regions had held
us help promote this platform.
sented above. Missioners, on a journey of local mission congresses which then fed into
hope, we are challenged to focus our eyes national mission congresses - all looking to-
on where God is calling us at this point of Our Mission Conference in Baltimore ward CAM 3. The degree of organization was
our history. Now, more than ever, we are Mission: A Journey of Hope is indeed amazing - and matched only by the enthusiasm
called to a journey of hope that is based very timely, given all the issues with which of those groups as they participated and made
not simply on human optimism or human we are confronted. We do hope you are plans to take the results back to their home
promises but on a God who faithfully calls joining us. There is still time to register. countries.
us to discipleship. You may go to At the closing ceremony, participants were
to register online. Looking at the list of par- mandated to inaugurate the "Continental Mis-
ticipants, plus the quality of speakers, I sion," called for by the Fifth Conference of
And what a year to be made aware of these
think this Mission Conference will once Latin American bishops at Aparecida, Brazil.
things the year of Mission! This year, it
again be engaging and truly exciting! Latin America is on fire for mission!
seems like everyone is talking about mis-
sion and the importance of mission in the I feel very challenged by our Latin American
life of the Church. We all know that this Lastly, we would like to wish Charlotte brothers and sisters. I hope that we can follow
year is a Jubilee year in honor of Paul the Cook all the best as she goes back to Kenya. their example and find ways to ignite ever
Apostle, missionary par excellence. In the Charlotte has been the Associate Director of greater enthusiasm for mission on the local and
US Church, we are celebrating 100 years USCMA for the past 4 years. She has been a national scene. Although it is not formally on
of having been officially called to send valuable member of the staff. Many of you the agenda for our upcoming Conference, I will
missioners throughout the world. In have known her. We thank her for her dedi- look forward to discussing ways that we can
October this year, the Synod of Bishops in cation to the work of USCMA. Blessings to join the Church in Latin America in their mis-
Rome will talk about the Word of God and your new endeavor, Charlotte! You will be sionary ardor. Let's talk about it!
the Mission of the Church. And just re- missed. Peace to you all.
cently in Ecuador, the great continental
mission which echoes the desire of the USCMA Staff
Aparecida meeting of the Bishops of Latin
America and the Caribbean to put the Rev. Michael Montoya, MJ, Executive Director
Church in a permanent state of mission Ms. Charlotte Cook, Associate Director
was launched. In a gathering that brought Sr. Anne Louise Von Hoene, MMS, Accountant
together 3000 delegates from the North,
Sr. Michael Theresa Brauer, SND de N,
Central and South America in one Mission
Congress with a challenge to listen, learn Administrative Assistant
and proclaim, the 52 delegates from the Questions/Comments re: Meetings & Conferences
US have experienced a vibrant Church in Questions/Comments re: Mission Update / Current Topics
mission. We are happy to share with you
the final message from the Congress in this E-Mail: Web Site:
Mission Update: ISSN 15426130

Page 2 US Catholic Mission Association

Mission Update Fall 2008

contd from p. 1 ready to leave behind our nets, our established take on the project of the Reign of God from a stance of gratitude and
plans, our boats, parents, homeland, structures, our successes and the littleness, united with the poor and the victims of this world as we
stability that gives us security. We are ready to do anything because work for justice and liberation, love and the common good, for alter-
Jesus is offering to share his cause with us and we want to identify natives which spring from hearts that have been recreated in the com-
with him. We have been captivated by his life and the freeing, vigor- munity of the Church.
ous authority with which he has invited us to abandon security and to
The Spirit breaks in on us, touches us and pushes us toward God, his-
follow him in mission.
tory, interiority and action. The love which springs forth from the
We give witness to Jesus, his life and his cause, because he has Father and the Son becomes translated in our history as solidarity
formed us in his image from within, transforming us into evangelizers which goes beyond all borders. The Spirit who anointed Jesus to
who share an intimate experience of communion and friendship with bring the Good News to the poor is the architect of unity and relation-
Him. Because Christ is at the center of our life, our discipleship is the ship, the Spirit announces freedom to the prisoners, gives sight to the
root of our missionary identity; it constantly creates and renews our blind, frees the oppressed and announces a year of favor.
communion with others and sustains our commitment to the transfor-
Mission in the heart of the world
mation of the world in missionary service.
The Community that is in Mission for Humanity is called to live in the
The change of epoch and the cultural and religious pluralism we ex-
Mystery of God, in heart of the divine desire for the salvation of all,
perience, demand that we question our imitation of Christ. Disciple-
full of love and humanization. The mission of God today is that of
ship and its evangelical demands make us countercultural. The reality
uniting all of humanity in one common house of creation. Thus, we
of the growing poverty of the majority of the world, a consequence of
are called to ask ourselves where humanity is headed today.
ever-expanding socio-economic and political injustice, challenges us
as disciples. Everything that is human is ours, humanitys current situation and
problems are ours as well. Our hope is that we can present the Good
All of this leads us to reaffirm our convictions and options as believers
News of Jesus and the Gospel as a light and a model for humanity,
so that our lives may illuminate the reason for our hope. We are led to
demonstrating that love of God and neighbor are one and the same.
drink from the life-giving water of the Gospel and to share it with
Because of that, we contemplate the whole of society and recognize
those who thirst for justice, peace and truth, with those who do not
all of its aspirations, projects, its humanism and thirst for God. We
believe in violence. These challenges call us to overcome individual-
are pained to see the suffering brought about by the crises of economic
ism and isolation and to reclaim and strengthen our sense of ecclesial
and social strategies, ecological emergencies, cultural and democratic
belonging and our loyal collaboration with our pastors, united in the
crises, not to mention the poverty, exclusion, violence and persecution
desire to form Christian communities characterized by prayer, har-
that mark our times.
mony and a missionary spirit.
What can we do or propose?
A community led by the Spirit, A Church for
A Divine World. The missionary community is sent by the Holy Spirit
Everyone and Servant of Humanity
to connect peoples and cultures, a unity in diversity (Jn. 21:11), start-
The Holy Spirit is leading us toward a new epoch in human life, a new ing in the periphery and moving to the center for the liberation of all.
way of being Church. We have experienced and We resonate with the divine dream of a world with-
we remember the living history of missionaries out peripheries or centers, a divinized world.
who have gone before us, many of whom are here
We are apprentices. As we confront the grave prob-
present in this Congress. They have given us
lems of our day, we are all apprentices. We have no
life. We have received new life from the memory
recipes. All we have to offer is trust in the Lord, an
of our American martyrs who gave their lives for
open heart and the willingness to give evidence for
love of Jesus and their brothers and sisters. In
our hope, based on our faith in the Gospel. Hope is
them, the evangelical mission of the Church
the central message of Biblical faith (SpS 2). Hope
becomes transparent and fruitful for humanity.
finds its concrete expression when the poor and the
They are witnesses and martyrs whose enthusiasm
victims begin to speak out, to make themselves pre-
for the mission is contagious.
sent. We take on all that is human, recognizing the painful reality of
Our missionary spirituality is a life in the Spirit which gives witness. the margination and exclusion of many of our brothers and sisters.
(Jn. 15:26-27) With their very blood, our American saints and martyrs
The Mission is recreated in solidarity, in sharing and in gratitude. In
proclaimed the truth of the God who frees us. They point us toward
his pastoral practice, Jesus taught us that the exploited and excluded
the source of life, the life that comes from Jesus incarnate in our land,
have a real part in the mission of the Church; they are participants in
a most profound Gospel spirituality.
the plan of God and lead us to broaden our horizons; they are signs
The Spirit leads us into mission, into incarnation in cultures and peo- pointing toward justice who incarnate hope in our history.
ples, to sow seeds, the seeds of a Gospel that will be reborn in new
We cooperate with humanitys movement toward unity under the guid-
faces and a variety of fruits. That same Spirit calls us into dialog and
ance of the Spirit who is sign of plurality and universality; we work in
ecumenical and interreligious collaboration. The Spirit leads us to
gratitude and in hope together with the poor. The Spirit has given us
become bread broken and shared for the sake of uniting everyone at
an ongoing task which will only come to completion in the final days.
the table of friendship and fraternity; to experience our communion
Meanwhile, we walk by faith as the Gospel opens us to the horizon of
with all of humanity in order to render praise and glory to God. We

US Catholic Mission Association Page 3

Mission Update Fall 2008

contd from p. 3 that final harvest which will come to fruition in the midst of an unjust world, always sowing the seeds of the Reign of
spite of our inability to pull out all the weeds. (Mt. 13: 24 30.) God.
Making our life a mission and the mission of the Church. We are Passion for Jesus and the desire that he be known and loved is the
called together to commit ourselves to our Church and society, to heart of mission.
collaborate in reading the signs of our times, in choosing priorities and All of us who are disciples living in Jesus want him to be known
goals for our moment of history and in living out solidarity, sharing and loved. We want to be servants among the poor, bringing
the gratitude that characterizes a missionary community. consolation and strength of heart. We are called to give life to all
of humanity, to communicate Jesus beauty and vitality, to recon-
We hope for a humanity fully alive in the love of God. We have much
cile and unify the human family, advancing the mission of the
to offer. There is no doubt that the Social Teaching of the Church
Church and universal well-being.
can generate hope in the midst of the most difficult situations, always
making us conscious that if the there is no hope for the poor, there is Young people, captivated by the strength and adventure of Jesus
no hope for anyone, not even for those who would be called mission and urged forward by the Spirit, have allowed God to
rich. (DA 395) The preferential option for the poor must permeate make them witnesses of faith and hope. They are the new face of
every dimension of our pastoral organization and our pastoral priori- the Church, a living and communal alternative in the midst of
ties. (DA 396). The missionary Church is called to be a consoler, humanity.
mediator and spokesperson for the poor.
With Mary our Mother
To Enter into the heart of the women and men of America. We want
We want to be disciples, to embark on the mission of Jesus. We have
to make of ourselves a Church in a permanent state of mission. We
learned that without heart, tenderness and love, a prophetic mission is
will put our hand to the plow, sensitive to the breath of the Holy Spirit
not possible. Mary imparted the Word of God because she first con-
who leads us forward without fear, certain that Divine Providence will
ceived it in her heart; she proclaimed her prophetic Magnificat be-
bring us great surprises.
cause she first believed; she was present at the foot of the cross and at
PRESENCE THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE WORLD Pentecost because she was the good ground that received the Word
We want to feel at one with the heart of the world and all of humanity, with a joyful heart, allowed it to increase a hundredfold and asked that
in one great community, signs of humanism and of Gods great empa- others do the same. Standing with her, we hear again the words Go
thy. We are called to go forth from our homeland, not knowing to and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the
what roads and situations the mission will call us, with nothing more Father, of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. (Mt. 28: 19)
than our hope and confidence placed in God whose promise will be
realized a hundredfold. We are sent into a new world as a metaphor Final message of CAM 3, COMLA 8, translated by Sr. Mary
and symbol, giving witness to the newness of the Reign of God McGlone, CSJ
appearing among us. The new humanity is the work of the Spirit ________________________________________________________________________________________
entrusted to us, in which we collaborate with all our being. The Benedict XVI to Cardinal Antonio Jose Gonzalez Zumarraga, Archbishop
Emeritus of Quito, President of the Central Commission of the Third American
Church in America is called to come forward with signs of justice in
Missionary Congress (CAM), from the Vatican, August 12, 2008.

Book Reviews
because the ideas are nuanced and challenging. When filtered through
Hope and Solidarity: Jon Sobrinos Chal- many fecund minds and articulated from different perspectives, they
lenge to Christian Theology emerge with greater clarity and significance. Terms whose meanings
are often assumed in discourse on liberation theology, the signs of
Stephen J. Pope, Editor the times, the preferential option for the poor, praxis, the king-
Orbis. 282p. $26 (paperback) dom of God, the anti-kingdom, the crucified people are mined
for their underlying significance.
ISBN: 139781570757655
One cannot read this sympathetic dissection of Sobrinos
The Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith is-
work without feeling the troubling challenge that he thrusts on com-
sued its Jon Sobrino notification on November 26, 2006, warning
placent Christians of the developed West. It is the overriding conten-
about deviations from Catholic doctrine in the works of this leading
tion of these articles that the locus where theology is done yields in-
exponent of liberation theology. Now we have this volume of 16 origi-
sights about Christian faith and practice that escape differently situ-
nal articles by Roman Catholic theologians from Boston to Santiago,
ated cultures. The implication is that the CDF is not exempt. The
Chile, each heavily footnoted, compiled, edited, indexed, and pub-
good news: this confrontation between the institutional and the pro-
lished less than two years later. The commitment of the authors, the
phetic church could have been more dire. One author reminds us that
editor, and the publisher to issue this timely defense of Sobrino is
once frowned on theologians, Rahner, de Lubac, Conger, Hring, even
evidence of their overwhelming support for his Challenge to Chris-
Aquinas, have now found orthodoxy. This is a book of solidarity and
tian Theology. hope.
The authors analyses of Sobrinos work, organized into Reviewed by Michael McCauley
theological method, christology, ecclesiology, and spirituality, often Adjunct Professor of Philosophy
cover similar ground, but here that is fruitful rather than redundant, College of Southern Maryland

Page 4 US Catholic Mission Association

Periodic Paper #3

strive together to realize the common good and to also share a

Enlivened by the Gospel message of hope and the wisdom of special concern for people who are poor and most vulnerable.
Catholic Social Teaching, we, as people of faith, have come In this interconnected world, injustice or suffering anywhere
together with deep urgency to help make our nation a more diminishes all of us. So we seek a world where human needs
perfect union. are addressed and where differences are settled in dialogue, not
violence. We seek a world here security is defined by solidar-
ity, and where peace is achieved through justice. And we know
Our Catholic tradition raises the best of what it means to be
this can be fully realized only when we exercise concern both
human and challenges us to live up to these ideals. With the
for the world today and for generations to come.
U.S. Catholic Bishops, we acknowledge that we are a nation
founded on life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, but the
right to life itself is not fully protected. (Forming Consciences
for Faithful Citizenship, 2007, p. 1) Victimized are the unborn, PLATFORM SPECIFICS WE THE PEOPLE
those experiencing war and violence, those suffering from eco-
nomic poverty in our own nation, and those fleeing violence When they gathered in Philadelphia in the summer of 1787, our
and poverty in other nations. Like the U.S. Bishops, we believe nations founders sought to establish Justice, insure domestic
these challenges are at the heart of public life and at the center Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the gen-
of the pursuit of the common good. (ibid.) eral Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves
and our posterity. This quest was articulated in the Preamble to
We know in faith the inherent dignity of each person and the the Constitution.
sacredness of life. We know in faith that all of us have a right
to participate in decisions that affect us. We know in faith that Today, We the People must do all we can to create a more
we are one, not just with people in our country, but with the perfect Union focused on the common good. Acknowledging
entire global community. And we know in faith that we are that the quest for the common good is both a civic obligation
called to care for all Gods Creation. and requirement of our faith, some 2,000 of us recently gath-
ered in more than 175 groups across the U.S. to begin writing
Inspired by faith, we also recognize an urgent need not only to this Platform for the Common Good. We discussed our na-
reclaim, but to build on our nations early ideals. Our founders tions current reality, based on our diverse lived experiences,
had a powerful vision for this nation. We have struggled for and quickly realized that we must address multiple social ills
more than two hundred years to build on this visionand to that are inextricably linked. For example, we could not separate
renew and perfect the early ideals by making them real not just problems in our immigration system from unfair trade policies
for a privileged few, but for all who reside within our bounda- and discriminationor the massive funding of war from an
ries. Furthermore, in todays world we know we cannot be con- underfunding of education, health and other human needs pro-
tent with just a limited national focus. We are linked globally grams.
and must engage that reality as well.
In the end, we understood that we share a common obligation
In this time of perilous change, we have an urgent need to build to address our interrelated challenges through sustained indi-
on the best of our founding vision and claim our role as We vidual, community, business and government engagement.
the people of the United States. To accomplish this, we must In the words of the Preamble to the U.S. Constitution,
set aside our individual wants and partisan views. We need to
US Catholic Mission Association Page 1
Periodic Paper #3 Fall 2008

We the People of the United States are called to: tutional racism, sexism and classism, and discrimination based
ESTABLISH JUSTICE on disability, age or other factors.

Justice requires ongoing work to create economic, political and Government Action Needed:
social systems that respect life, honor the dignity and equality To Protect Life
of all persons, and allow every person the opportunity to flour- Promote policies that prevent and reduce abortions by sup-
ish. Furthermore, we need to continually monitor those systems porting women and families. Ensure robust alternatives to
and correct them whenever they fail to address these goals.
abortion, including adoption
Recognizing that we are members of an interconnected world,
we are accountable for the consequences of our political and Abolish the death penalty.
economic decisions both within our nation and throughout our
global community. Discrimination which denies full human To Address Economic Disparity
dignity to any person hurts the whole human family. Our ac-
tions and decisions should reflect our values of compassion and Enhance the influence of low-income and middle income
fairness, especially when they address economic disparity and people on policymaking to ensure that the interests of all are
discrimination. served, not just those with money
Treat federal budgets as moral documents, insisting that they
Every economic decision and institution must be judged in light of be just and serve the common good
whether it protects or undermines the dignity of the human person. Better regulate corporations and financial institutions; insti-
Economic Justice for All, U.S. Catholic Bishops, 13 tute financial reform and transparency
Enhance workers rights to join unions without fear of harass-
WHAT WE SEE: Too many today have lost a sense of a con- ment and to negotiate first contracts within a reasonable time
sistent ethic of life, which is harmed in many ways, including period
by poverty, abortion and capital punishment. Internationally, Sign and ratify international conventions that promote eco-
our economic system has disproportionately benefitted large nomic justice and human rights
corporations and their shareholders while millions of U.S.
workers and laborers, family farmers in the global south, and Work to lessen income disparities and to reform tax policies
others often struggle in poverty. In the shrinking middle class, that favor the wealthy and corporate interests.
many U.S. families find it increasingly difficult to meet their
needs. This challenge is even greater in households headed by On Immigration
women and in communities of color. We witness wages that do
Examine and correct the negative impacts of trade agreements
not reflect the cost of living and a widening gap between rich
on low-income communities, especially in other nations as
and poor. Unrestrained capitalism has created systemic ine-
quality both within the U.S. and between industrialized they lead to migration
nations and the developing world. The resulting economic Support policies that assist countries of the global south to
desperation is one of the causes of mass displacement and enliven their economies
increased migration. Create new processes and laws for a reasonable path to citi-
The U.S. immigration system has not adjusted to meet 21st
Ensure immigrants rights to fair wages and safe work envi-
century realities. This leads to exploitation and mistreatment of
ronments, and the rights to organize and join unions
migrant workers and immigrants who are undocumented. Fear
and bigotry are often the driving forces behind laws and prac- Promote immigration policies that maintain family unity
tices that have separated families, deprived people of basic Focus on basic security for all those impacted-immigrants and
human rights, militarized the border, and negatively impacted local communities
local economies.
Protect the basic human rights of all immigrants detained by
local and federal authorities.
Throughout our nation, intolerance and other forms of discrimi-
nation have fostered disparities and injustice.
To Address Discrimination
TO ESTABLISH JUSTICE we are challenged to protect life Acknowledge that discrimination, including racism and
and to address disparities between haves and have-nots in sexism, continues to impact public systems and encourage
this country and around the world. We are called to support public employees and others to engage in anti-discrimination
policies that promote economic equity, ensure human rights, training
and eliminate all forms of exploitation and discrimination. We End discrimination in all institutional forms.
must address the root causes of migration and reform our
flawed immigration system. And we need to change Platform
for the Common Good laws and mentalities that support insti- Individual/C Government Action Needed:

Page 2 US Catholic Mission Association

Periodic Paper #3 Fall 2008

Support and promote programs that promote a fair distribu- mixed-income development along with green spaces
tion of resources and serve vulnerable populations Promote incentives for local business development that in-
Support and promote programs and activities that address cludes grocery stores and other services in all communities
prejudice and discrimination Ensure that convenient, safe public transportation is available
Write letters to the editor and op-eds to encourage anti-racism in all communities
education and better relationships within our communities Change the criminal justice system so it will decrease recidi-
Strive to keep the media honest and denounce scapegoating vism and end discriminatory law enforcement
and fear-mongering Promote re-integration programs for ex-offenders that offer
Attend local precinct meetings and other gatherings to ex- effective support with drug and alcohol rehabilitation, job
press concerns to public servants training, employment, housing and healthcare.
Purchase fair trade products
Individual/Community Action Needed:
Become a mentor and/or work with youth, both in Work to
ENSURE DOMESTIC TRANQUILITY build a consistent culture of life and nonviolence
Know our neighbors and participate in local government
school and after school
Domestic tranquility grows in a society in which all can par-
ticipate and access what they need to live with dignity. Healthy Volunteer at community-initiated programs/activities, e.g.
communities ensure that all members live in safety as they litter pickup or
fairly share the benefits and costs of social and economic sys- Organize and raise awareness of community neighborhood
tems that serve their communities. watch problems, and create solutions
Support and promote better criminal laws and changes in our
Human dignity can be realized and protected only in community. prison system.
Economic Justice for All, U.S. Catholic Bishops, 14

WHAT WE SEE: Violence permeates many neighborhoods PROVIDE FOR THE COMMON DEFENSE
within the U.S., especially those where poverty rates are high.
Current rates of murder, crime, drug-use, gang membership and
incarceration are intolerable. Harsh law enforcement and a lack Common defense, in the global context of the 21st century,
of rehabilitation services result in recidivism that further under- cannot rely on military might alone. National security is only
mines families and communities. Racism and classism are en- possible in the context of global, human and ecological secu-
demic in the U.S. criminal justice system. rity. Conflict prevention and resolution are fostered by relation-
ships of trust that advance human rights and the common good.
Ineffective or non-existent public transportation, exclusionary
zoning, and lack of safe green spaces isolate individuals and If development is the new name for peace, war and preparations for
neighborhoods, limit job opportunities, and harm families. war are the major enemy of the healthy development of peoples.
If we take the common good of all humanity as our norm, instead
of individual greed, peace would be possible.
structures and programs to build up local communities and On Social Concern, Pope John Paul II, #10
businesses and to provide access to education, jobs, needed
services and green space. Local businesses are important in WHAT WE SEE: Current U.S. government priorities, as
developing strong communities that support families. Govern- measured by our national budget, favor the military compo-
ment, business and community partnerships must provide nents of defense to the grave neglect of other required elements
needed opportunities for children and families to flourish in an of security. This is not the best way to provide security for our
environment free from violence and criminal activity. We need nation and for our world, as events of the past few years have
to reform our criminal justice systems and focus more attention shown. A foreign policy of U.S. domination, arms-building,
on rehabilitation programs and transitional support services for and preemptive war does more to offend other nations and peo-
re-entry into communities. ple than it does to defend our own.

Government Action Needed: The militaristic mindset of our nation needs to change. It con-
Fund after-school programs, jobs for youth, and continuing tributes to a culture of violence in our world that reaches into
education (GED, ESL) for adults our neighborhoods. The war in Iraq is an especially troubling
example of U.S. reliance on military force alone to solve inter-
Create community zoning that encourages mixed use and national problems and the ineffectiveness of this course. The
US Catholic Mission Association Page 3
Periodic Paper #3 Fall 2008

cost of the war is tremendous in terms of lives lost; people Improve care and provide adequate services for returning
grievously wounded; physical and ecological destruction; on- U.S. troops, veterans and their families.
going mental health problems of those involved; the plight of
refugees and other victims of war; and the damage done to U.S. Individual/Community Action Needed:
moral credibility and standing in the world.
Promote a culture of life and nonviolence by participation in
The dollar cost of the war increases our national debt and peace-building actions
squanders resources needed for healthcare, education, infra-
structure, job creation and poverty elimination. Yet our nation Seek opportunities to learn about different cultures to lessen
continues to prepare for other wars, stockpiling conventional prejudice, misunderstanding and divisions among people
and nuclear weapons while ignoring non-proliferation treaties Commit to ongoing education on U.S. foreign policy (aid
and insisting that other nations disarm; spending billions on allocation, trade positions and military spending)
military equipment that is inappropriate for todays conflicts;
manufacturing and selling arms to the rest of the world; and Tell elected officials to support actions that will lead to real
neglecting the diplomatic and development components that peace.
are necessary for national and human security. This runs con-
trary to our commitment to protect life and human dignity.
to develop an ethical U.S. foreign policy that emphasizes con-
flict resolution through diplomacy instead of military force To promote the general welfare requires ensuring that the
and that promotes stability Platform for the Common Good right to life and to fulfillment of essential human needs essen-
abroad through fair trade laws, debt cancellation and increased tial for life, including food, quality healthcare, safe housing,
responsible international development aid. Our nation must and quality education, are available to everyone. Today, more
engage with other nations to develop creative solutions to com- than ever, we are deeply interconnected. Thus, deprivation or
mon problems such as migration, human trafficking, drug traf- suffering in one part of the world ultimately affects us all. Indi-
ficking, crime, weapons proliferation, global poverty, and cli- viduals, communities and government all have a positive role
mate change. to play in ensuring that people can survive and live with dig-
Our country needs to do more to foster constructive relations
with and improved understanding of other cultures. Supporting The needs of [people who are] poor take priority over the desires of
the rich; the rights of workers over the maximization of profits; the
the United Nations is critical as is participating in and abiding
preservation of the environment over uncontrolled industrial expan-
by international treaties. sion; the production to meet social needs over production for military
Government Action Needed: Economic Justice for All, U.S. Catholic Bishops, #94
Reject a foreign policy of domination in favor of cooperative
multilateral efforts to prevent conflict and promote WHAT WE SEE: Massive investment in war and militarism
diplomacy, development and human rights has diverted money required to meet human needs. Many good
Reduce the military weapons budget and invest in basic hu- jobs have moved overseas. Tax cuts for the wealthy and
man needs corporate interests also decrease needed resources. Groups and
individuals face ongoing discrimination. And social programs
Renounce preemptive war and first-strike policies fail when they encourage dependency rather than providing
Take decisive steps to eliminate nuclear weapons pathways out of poverty.
Acknowledge that torture is immoral and counter to U.S.
values Education is an essential and powerful tool to intervene in gen-
erational poverty, but it fails large numbers of students, espe-
Establish a cabinet-level institution responsible for education
cially those from low-income families and students of color.
in conflict resolution, reconciliation and peacekeeping
Many schools fail to engage students, and graduation rates are
Support the United Nations and other multilateral organiza- low. College is prohibitively expensive for many, limiting
tions options for educational achievement.
Restore the constitutional balance of power between the
executive and legislative branches on the responsibility for Our nation continues to spend more on healthcare than other
using military force countries, but millions of people receive inadequate or no care.
End the U.S. occupation of Iraq, remove U.S. combat troops, People in low-income communities and communities of color
and accept responsibility for assisting Iraqi refugees and have a much lower quality of care.
rebuilding civil society

Page 4 US Catholic Mission Association

Periodic Paper #3 Fall 2008

Even affordable housing is unaffordable for many families, includes prenatal and infant care, dental care, mental health
and wait lists for programs such as Section 8 take years. Mean- care, substance abuse treatment, vision care, and prescription
while, mortgage foreclosures resulting in part from inadequate drug coverage
regulation of the mortgage industry have hurt countless Ensure that all pregnant women have access to full healthcare
families and increased homelessness. And the continuing
inability to restore communities devastated by Hurricane Fully fund anti-hunger programs like food stamps and infant
Katrina is evidence of the government inability to adequately nutrition programs
address housing emergencies. Shift to preventive care and medical home model that
provides access to primary care doctors
TO PROMOTE THE GENERAL WELFARE we must pro- Provide adequate funding for medical and health education
mote and protect life and all of the systems and supports that
are required for life and human dignity. This includes embrac- Improve healthcare access for underserved communities such
ing the goals of both the U.S. and the global campaigns to as low-income rural areas
eliminate poverty and to increase access to quality education, Better regulate pharmaceutical companies and work for
living wage jobs, safe housing, nutritious food, and comprehen- affordable prescription prices.
sive, quality healthcare. We must create the essential condi-
tions for a consistent culture of life that respects and promotes
On Education
life at all stages.
Increase education funding and distribute resources equitably,
Government Action Needed: with special attention to schools in low-income neighbor-
On Poverty
Pay teachers fair and adequate wages and institute programs
Support human life and dignity by approving and funding to encourage teacher retention
programs that promote the dignity of all life (e.g., quality
housing, child care, healthcare and nutrition assistance) Provide more arts, music and other cultural enrichment
Provide more efficient access to and better coordination
among human needs services Ensure that special education students have the resources and
trained teachers they need
Institute a living wage that allows wage earners to provide
food, shelter, medical care, education and recreation for them- Ensure that education includes life skills and vocational
selves and their dependents training to prepare students for jobs

Bring environmental, labor, corporate and trade concerns into Provide free universal preschool/Head Start
proper balance. Fund educational mandates.

On Employment On Housing
Create green and public works jobs to reduce unemployment Increase funding for safe, affordable housing, especially for
End tax loopholes and other incentives that make it easier for people who are homeless, and ensure inclusionary housing
businesses to leave the U.S. Convert vacant properties/units into affordable and/or
Provide incentives for businesses to create new jobs in U.S. transitional housing
communities that need them Fund and promote rent-to-own programs.
Ensure that employees have the right to form labor unions
and to bargain collectively for just working conditions, a Individual/ Community Action Needed:
living wage, healthcare, and retirement and other benefits Make individual and communal choices that protect the dig-
Ensure that employers make provisions for family members nity of all life
with caretaking responsibilities Attend city council and town hall meetings
Address employment needs of groups with high unemploy- Engage in the corporal works of mercy and contribute money
ment (e.g., people with disabilities). to meeting others needs
Be responsible consumers by supporting companies that pro-
On Health and Nutrition mote fair trade and boycotting companies with poor labor
Study successful healthcare systems in states and other standards
countries and incorporate best practices
Work toward improving our own health
Move away from for-profit healthcare
As parents, be involved in our childrens education
Institute affordable, universal quality healthcare, which
Hold regional school boards accountable.
US Catholic Mission Association Page 5
Periodic Paper #3 Fall 2008

We envision a social and economic order that is sustainable

and ecologically responsible; places human dignity above prof-
SECURE THE BLESSINGS OF LIBERTY its; harnesses renewable and clean sources of energy; balances
TO OURSELVES AND OUR POSTERITY corporate interests with the global common good; addresses the
need to strengthen our infrastructure; eliminates debt that will
harm future generations; recognizes and seeks to address dis-
criminatory practices; promotes fair trade policies; and neither
Securing the blessings of liberty for ourselves and future gen-
exploits persons and communities, nor abuses our stewardship
erations requires that we shape our economic and regulatory
of the earth.
systems so they are balanced and sustainable. We cannot have
healthy human organisms on a sick planet because all life relies Government Action Needed:
on interdependent, healthy ecosystems. We must move beyond Bring environmental, labor, corporate and trade concerns into
older economic and social models that rely on environmental proper balance
exploitation, excessive corporate power and discrimination and
embrace new, emerging economic systems and environmental Support multilateral efforts to address ecological concerns
technologies that are sustainable and secure. Help the developing world secure basic human needs in-
cluding access to clean water and an equitable access to the
Using [natural resources] as if they were inexhaustible, marketplace
with absolute dominion, seriously endangers their Assist resource-poor countries in adapting to the effects of
availability not only for the present generation but climate change through increased development assistance
above all for generations to come. Promote renewable energy technologies and other green tech-
Sollicitudo Rei Socialis, Pope John Paul II, 34
Pass legislation to conserve resources and address global
WHAT WE SEE: Resource depletion alters the environment
to a point of limiting regeneration. As resources diminish, fu- Eliminate business practices that abuse people or the environ-
ture generations ability to live with dignity diminishes. Envi- ment
ronmental degradation and unsustainable resource use affects Address our national debt so it does not extend to future gen-
us all, especially people who live in impoverished communi- erations
ties. Pollution, global warming and privatization of resources
like water threaten the harmony of our ecological, economic, Repair and rebuild our aging infrastructure.
and social systems. Unsustainable consumption of fossil fuel
increases desertification, drought and flooding. Shifts in Individual/Community Action Needed:
weather patterns exact a tremendous human cost as they
Educate ourselves on the connection between ecological is-
threaten the fragile water and agricultural systems that sustain
sues and our life choicesand make better choices
subsistence farmers in much of the world.
Alter our consumption practices to be in line with our calls to
stewardship, sustainability and respect for human life and
Both domestically and globally, nations allow multinational
corporations unreasonable control over economic and environ- dignity
mental resources. Their privileged seat at the policy bargaining Actively engage our representatives and policymakers on
table and single-minded devotion to profit have fostered unsus- unsustainable consumption and the oppressive structures of
tainable and exploitative economic systems. And people in the inequality.
U.S. and other industrialized nations consume a disproportion-
ate percentage of the worlds resources while engaging in
wasteful practices. SUMMARY AND CALL TO ACTION

Meanwhile, our nation continues to ignore the need to rebuild

our deteriorating infrastructure (e.g., bridges) and to reduce our In the Catholic Tradition, responsible citizenship is a virtue,
national debt. Both will have a devastating effect on future and participation in political life is a moral obligation.
Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship, U.S Catholic
Bishops, 2007, p. 4
To secure the Blessings of Liberty for ourselves and our pos-
terity we must organize our economic systems, development
and production to provide for long term sustainability. Ecologi- For over 200 years, people of faith have sought to extend our
cal responsibility requires that we manage and distribute mate- nations founding vision to all people. Our goal: to form a
rial resources across all humanity and into future generations. more perfect union that serves the common good.

Page 6 US Catholic Mission Association

Periodic Paper #3 Fall 2008

We the People must continue to work togetheras govern-

ment, business, communities and individualsto create a na-
tion and world rooted in justice. We must speak, act, insist, BACKGROUND FOR THE COMMON GOOD
demand and ensure that the common good is at the heart of all
decisions and actions. These times call for renewed engage-
ment across our differences. Political engagement is not just When they gathered in Philadelphia in the summer of 1787, our
our right, but our responsibility. nations founders sought to establish justice, insure domestic
tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the gen-
eral welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves
We commit to engaging this Platform for the Common Good. and our posterity. Today, We the People, must do all we can to
We will use it as an educational tool in the preelection process, create a more perfect union focused on the common good. Two
as a yardstick for measuring candidates and making our choices thousand Catholics and other people of faith have gathered in
on November 4, 2008, and most importantly, as an accountabil- over 40 states to develop a Platform for the Common Good that
ity measure after the election. It is this continued engagement articulates shared principles about building a culture of life,
that will lead to true change. By working for the principles con- promoting economic justice and peace, establishing foreign
tained in this Platform for the Common Good, we will become policy rooted in global solidarity and caring for Gods creation.
the country that we say we are, authentically affirming what The Platform was ratified on July 12 in Philadelphia during the
our founders wrote with pride: Convention for the Common Good.
We the People of the United States, in order to form a more CONVENTION SPONSORS
perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquil-
ity, provide for the common defense, promote the general NETWORK, A National Social Justice Lobby
Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good
and our posterity do ordain and establish this Constitution Leadership Conference of Women Religious
for the United States of America. Pax Christi USA
Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns
Center of Concern
Sisters of Mercy of the Americas
National Catholic Rural Life Conference
The Delegates and Steering Committee
Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities
of the Convention for the Common Good, Ignatian Solidarity Network
and all who shared in this process US Catholic Mission Association
Conference of Major Superiors of Men
Oblates of St. Francis De Sales
Franciscan Mission Service
Franciscan Action Network
Catholics United
For more information:
Catholic Scholars for Worker Justice or Lane Center for Catholic Studies & Social Thought, Uni-
versity of San Francisco
2008 Convention for the Common Good

Periodic Papers are published by USCMA

Hecker Center, Suite 100
3025 Fourth Street, NE
Washington, DC 20017-1102
Phone: 202-832-3112 Fax: 202-832-3688
E-mail: Web site:

US Catholic Mission Association Page 7

Mission Update Fall 2008

America with Christ:

Listen, Learn, Proclaim!

The Third American Missionary Con-

gress (CAM3, COMLA 8)
Quito Ecuador
August 12-17, 2008

Page 5 US Catholic Mission Association

Mission Update Fall 2008

US Catholic Mission Association Page 6

Mission Update Fall 2008

Mission: A Journey of Hope celebrates the US Churchs 100 years of

MISSION responding to the challenges of Sapienti consilio to send missioners throughout the

Mission: A Journey of Hope is a journey not simply based on human opti-

A Journey of Hope mism but in a faithful God who continues to call us to mission
a journey of hope that women and men committed to mission have taken all throughout
. a journey of hope that missioners in the 21st century are continually asked to witness in
the midst of the challenges of mission in a truly global context.
Our 2008 USCMA Mission Conference takes place in the historic Baltimore area,
which this year celebrates the 200th year of becoming the first Archdiocese in the nation.

Keynote Speakers

Panel Speakers

Dialogue Sessions
What messages do todays missioners need to bring to our own US culture? In what ways do
our journeys as missioners witness to hope in a new global reality?


Where do we find mission creativity and vitality in parishes and in diocesan programs? In
what ways do such creativity bring a new experience of hope for people in the pews? How do
we support and promote such creativity and vitality?
What are the implications of Benedict XVIs encyclical on Hope for mission in todays new

October 24-26, 2008 What are missioners sent to the US (home missioners and international missioners) telling us
about the new global mission context of the U.S.? How do their mission journeys engender
Baltimore, Maryland hope?

REGISTRATION FEE: (Includes meeting materials, refreshments, and KATHY SCHMITTGENS, SSND & PAUL LININGER, OFM
How can religious communities use their global network to promote solidarity
meals as indicated)
and hope? How does the multi-cultural, multi-lingual composition of todays
USCMA Member registration $299 ($315 after Sept. 23) religious communities inspire hope in todays new globalized context of mission?

Non-member registration $315 ($335 after September 23) THE FUTURE OF MISSION
Non USCMA member plus one year membership ENGAGING THE NEXT GENERATION FOR MISSION
$355 ($375 after September 23) Who is the next generation of missioners? What inspires the next generation to go to mis-
sion? How do we support them in their journey of hope?

PLEASE CONTACT Holiday Inn BWI Airport Conference Center DI- MISSION EARTH:
RECTLY for Hotel Accommodation: 1-800-810-0271 Ask for special rate CHANGING THE CLIMATE ON GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE
for US Catholic Mission Association (group code-CMA) JOAN MUMAW, IHM & MAURICE LANGE, OMI
For more information call us at 202-832-3112 How do the stories of the missioners bring creativity and hope to the issue of
global climate change? How do we put a human face to the issues of global
Or e-mail us at
climate change? How does our creativity or lack thereof in addressing the issues of global
Visit our website at climate change affect the lives of the poor?

Page 7 US Catholic Mission Association

Mission Update Fall 2008

Resources and Up-Coming Events

Maryknoll Mission Institute Baylor University, Waco, TX Email:
October 5-10 Fire for God: Blowing on the Email:
Coals of our Hearts Website: Vigil & Direct Action to Close SOA/
For complete schedule and presenters: WHINSEC
Telephone: 914- 941-0783 Ext. 5631 Annual Conference November 21-23, 2008
Website: US Catholic Mission Association Fort Benning, GA
Mission: A Journey of Hope Telephone: 202-234-3440
Global Economics Workshop October 24-26, 2008 Website:
October 15-17, 2008 Baltimore, MD
New York City Telephone: 202-832-3112 Preparing for Cross-Cultural Ministry
Telephone: 212-682-6481 Program
Website: January 20 - February 18, 2009
Intercultural Consultation Services
Eastern Fellowship of American Society of
CNVS National Conference Missiology San Antonio, TX
Sustained by the Spirit: Person, Program and October 31 - November 1, 2008 Tel: 313-341-4841
Planet Maryknoll, NY E-mail:
October 16-18, 2008 Contact: Rodney Petersen
Portland, Oregon Email: Ecumenical Advocacy Days
Telephone: 301-270-0900 ext. 10 March 13-16, 2009
Near Washington, DC
Email: Workshop for Returned Missioners Website:
November 6-9, 2008
Congo Week Haverford, PA The Emerging Church:
October 19-25, 2008 From Mission to Mission Conversations, Convergence & Action
Sponsored by Friends of the Congo and Africa Telephone: 720-494-7211 March 20-22, 2009
Faith and Justice Network Email: Albuquerque, NM
Website: Website:

2nd Annual Symposium on Faith & Culture 12th Religious Study Tour to China
Facing Race 2008 Annual Conference April 18-May 5, 2009
Bottom-Up Approaches to Global Poverty November 13-15, 2008 US Catholic China Bureau
October 23-25, 2008 Applied Research Center Telephone: 973-763-1131
Baylor University, Institute for Faith & Learn- Oakland, CA Email:
ing Telephone: 510-653-3415 Website:


American Indian Liberation, A Theology of Sovereignty, George E. Tink Tinker, 2008
A New Heart, Eleven Qualities of Holiness, Robert Morneau, 2008
Ancestral Grace, Meeting God in Our Human Story, Diarmuid OMurchu, MSC, 2008
Binding the Strong Man, A Political Reading of St. Marks Gospel, Ched Myers, 2008
Child, Victim, Soldier, The Loss of Innocence in Uganda, Donald H. Dunson, 2008
Eucharist, Robert Barron, 2008
Held in the Light, Norman Morrisons Sacrifice for Peace and His Familys Journey of Healing, Anne Morrison Welsh, with Joyce Hollyday,
Help My Unbelief, William J. OMalley, 2008
Jean Vanier, Essential Writings, Introduced by Carolyn Whitney-Brown, 2008
La Biblia de Nuestro Pueblo, Luis /Alonso Schkel, Traductor, 2008
Modern Spiritual Masters, Writings on Contemplation and Compassion, Robert Ellsberg, Editor, 2008
Original Prayer, Themes from the Christian Tradition, Lavinia Byrne
Theology Brewed in an African Pot, Agbonkhianmeghe E. Orobator, 2008
This Little Light, Lessons in Living from Sister Thea Bowman, Michael ONeill McGrath, 2008
What Is the Mission of the Church? A Guide for Catholics, Roger P. Schroeder, 2008

US Catholic Mission Association Page 8

Mission Update Fall 2008

This missionary
awakening in
the form of a
will seek to place
the Church
permanently in a
state of mission.
(Aparecida #551)
El Evangelio de Aparecida

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