What is Peace and Justice?

At my local Parish. We had a seminarian come to us from Costa Rica. He was issued a commision on Peace and Justice. Someone came from the diocese to talk about Peace and Justice. SHe gave us many examples of projects we could do to help save our inner city parish and out nieghborhood.

We could watch a movie together once a month.
We could apply for a grant and start a buisiness.
we could do things we were already doing like start a food pantry.

The people at the meeting gave the goup a name. Christian Community Outreach. Our seminarian even though he is smart is but not good with people and doesnt take the inniative. I used to do lots of things around the parish like help in the food pantry or fix the garage door or cut the grass but more and more I found myself being personally attacked by members of the parish. So I lost all intrest.

SO after about a year of nothing. The pastor invited someone to come in from a parish that causes nothing but trouble and talk about all this ridiculous stuff. This person suggested we do stuff that might get people arrested or cause problems with other groups in the parish. Everyone had pretty much given up on this and now I have.

I had even come up with a plan to work with a green program to fix up a vacant lot but nothing happend.

I think the group could have started off well as a social group. All the social groups at church are very old…

I think Social Justice and Peace is a good idea with alot of people in our church growing old and alot of fuddy duddy groups. It kind of bothers me in a world where things cost so much, we are sort of closing poor parishs and moving on. This could be a good soloution to a growing problem.

What might be a good solution - starting a peace and justice social group in your church? I wasn’t totally clear on that after reading your post.

I love your idea of cleaning up a vacant lot. Many of the ideas they had were great…it’s just easy to get overwhelmed when starting off, since peace and justice has so much room to spread and grow. There’s so much need out there. Maybe starting small, by getting parishioners involved in helping out at a food kitchen. Service projects, like collecting mittens for the poor. It sounds like you guys already have a food pantry going which is great. Getting lots of people involved so their hearts will be on fire for helping and serving others. Even being aware of important legislation in your area, and publishing info on it in your church bulleting to get people to advocate for the poor. Start out small and pray. It sounds like you’re genuinely concerned and interested in social justice and that’s awesome.

I suggested all those things but My seminarian and pastor has trouble discerning and so nothing happend…

After reading alot of the posts here and noticing the increasing disparity in the US. I think the answer may be for alot of parishs to be handed over to mendicant friars.

In that way Poor parishs can continue to operate in the US until the situation rectifies itself.

Does your parish have a St. Vincent dePaul society? this is an association of lay faithful whose primary apostolate is identifying those persons living within the parish boundaries who need help with housing, food, clothing, medical bills etc. Perhaps you could start one. Or if other avenues don’t work out, look for someone nearby who needs home repairs, rides to the doctor and church, or other needs not being met elsewhere and do some individual evangelization. good luck in finding direction for your good heart.

Dear friend

You will find that in most parishes those people who put themselves forward for work in the parish are the least best candidates to do so. Catholicism is nothing more than a social club for them and not a matter of faith. It is mostly habit and something they have done from the cradle. I am not saying they do not have faith , of course they do, but they are not bearing the spark, they are indeed not the people of Christ in that what they do does not bear any deeper meaning than something they do from habit or that they are part of a club.

Now you may read this and say what on earth does she mean…you may think I am harsh but it is an observance and an accurate one. It is those least best for the job that put themselves forward as Cathecists, Sacristans, helpers in many ways in the church. I have seen bigotted behaviour from those people and at best a lack of the love of Christ who marginalises no-one. Those people usually are of retirement age and I have witnessed the most bigotted behaviour from those who fulfill roles within the church even to some extent that is downright awful towards people.

I have heard gossip like wildfire, bad words spoken and all of this I have ignored, I have seen those who most need Christ turned away by these people and stepped in myself to stop them turning them away. I have seen this clutch on God’s Kingdom behave less like Christ than I can imagine…

What do I think, they are human and my brother’s and sister’s they do not fully realise the Kingdom of God, they have faith yes, but they see it as more of a club, than a home for all in God, they see clothes and intellect, they see worth and unworthy,oh sad I am, very sad I am to see who is put forward as the face of Jesus.

God Bless you and much love and peace to you

Teresa

Bill_A

Every parish that has Eucharistic Adoration that I know of personally, and many more that I hear about, all have a tremendous growth in love for God and love for their neighbor; their brothers and sisters.

The Eucharist is the beating Heart of every parish and all good things flow from Eucharistic adoration.

Maria

No what Teresa said is absoloutley true. I am poor so I travel alot from Parish to Parish. In the city I just site this local parish as such…

I have a hard time discerning if these people are lukewarm catholics and wiggle there way in for satan to cause trouble. Maybe the Pastor thinks this is a good way to increase their faith. I do not Know but I have a good idea its the former.

But she hit the nail on the head. Teresa definitley has the gift of Discernment I think.

I have known My Catechist at this parish for 35 years. She is indeed a greedious Bigot. I am not perfect myself but I am happy to see people of all “Race” and “color” at my parish. SHe was away for 18 years. Decided one day she was full of the holy spirit and wanted to teach RCIA class. So in she went.

I have seen the poor people come to this parish and be turned the way when I would offer to minister to them. I would say the least they should get is to be ministered to… If not a free handout, a handup.

The Food pantry is always disorganized. Dont know what its like but people just throw things on the floor. One time I took a clothing rack in there and threw it in with the rest of the mess.

Sometimes as Catholics, we can start things along in the proper direction by putting up little arrow icons along the way. for example you see cloths on the floor and a clothing rack. It might be natural instinct to pick the cloths up and hang them. We could really use a saint Vincents De Paul society. As it is the ladies of Charity are in charge of the Food Pantry but I think they could use a little bit of help. More than the Knights of Columbus which just want to sit around and drink.

Tommorow I have to goto mass alone. Ive had to get away from this insanity for a while. I may goto the Passionist Monastary tommorow because its close. They are about 99-199 Pasionists short and not in much better shape…

Things would be alot better if we had more priests and monks. Thats for sure. Right now one more body is not going to be that much more help.

I nearly sit in perpetual adoration of the Belssed Sacrement. I see people pray to the Virgiin Mary in before the blessed sacrement. To me the blessed sacrement means communion. Love thy nieghbor as thyself.

Of course. If I loved my nieghbor I would never talk about them but than Again. I cant be stupidly happy all the time and love my nieghbor, when they have no respect for me. I find it very insulting.

A Parish does not a lesson on Peace and Justice. That is a Left Wing goodie goodie good for nothing bit of pie in the sky.

I betcha’ what is always needed is adult instruction in the faith.

We have done this in my parish off and on for 20 years. The Pastor simply teaches adults advanced CCD. So many adults would welcome such a course taught one night a week or after Sunday Mass. But the Priest has want to do it. The job of the Bishop is to teach, and a Priest is an extention of the Bishop. Instructed adults will be more valuable than staggering with a “Peace and Justice” rigamarole.

Bill A and Teresa have hit the nail on the head, abstract concern about peace and justice and a multiplicity of programs, organizations, classes, and outreach means nothing if the parishioners themselves are not modelling Christ for each other, for their own families and for the community. If these otherwise worthy endeavors do not have their source and summit in the Eucharist they are empty and valueless. Bill makes the point that we must look to ourselves, to our own responses to others, to doing just what he suggests, taking the Little Way of doing small things well for the love of Jesus, such has hanging up a coat, straightening a pantry shelf, listening to someone’s story.

[quote=asquared] If these otherwise worthy endeavors do not have their source and summit in the Eucharist they are empty and valueless.
[/quote]

My point exactly.

Maria

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