Seek Justice This Advent Season

Seek Justice This Advent Season

Seek Justice This Advent Season

This Advent, commit to simplicity. In a season that can mistakenly be focused on consumption, it’s a good chance to explore ways to live simply as we prepare for the coming of Jesus and the restoration of the earth.

Here are some ideas shared by our Social Justice and Peace Commission to live a more simple and intentional life, perhaps starting now, during Advent.

______ Take some breaks from my cell phone/smart phone, computer, and other devices so that you can be really present to the people around you.

______ Establish priorities and learn to say “no” to things that are not important to you and “yes” to things that are important.

______ Keep a gratitude journal by recording the big and small blessings that come my way.

______ Get rid of junk mail by
• throwing it into a recycling bin as soon as it arrives
• stopping it from being delivered by asking to be removed from mailing lists
• going paperless for bills, opting for digital bills instead

______ Eat more vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds, and less meat and dairy to lower my impact on the environment.

______ Reduce use of single-use plastics.

______ If you use a cut Christmas tree, plan ahead for helpful ways for disposing of it. Ecomaine is a great resource for statewide options.  Their information on recycling gift wrapping is something to consider before purchasing. “if you can rip it, you can recycle it,” they say!

Thanks to the Ignatian Solidarity Network for their leadership on this initiative. You can also sign up for the Ignatian Solidarity Network Advent calendar online here. It has daily suggestions for living more simply and in ways that help restore the earth.

Toward the Common Good – An Evening with Kevin Concannon

Toward the Common Good – An Evening with Kevin Concannon

Toward the Common Good – An Evening with Kevin Concannon

Kevin Concannon will share selected highlights of Maine public policy history over a fifty year period. He will focus on public program changes that were influenced and directed by individual Catholic persons, and several particular Catholic institutions, during a time of major changes brought about by The Great Society and the Second Vatican Council. 

And, beyond Maine geographically, he will discuss significant social policy and law changes, often aligned with Catholic Social Teaching – and much more, all directed at addressing issues and the Common Good.

With Kevin as our tour guide, one who travelled this journey as a participant at levels of influence, whose values and professional competencies reflect his Catholic religion, parental influences, and largely Catholic Education, we’re sure to hear themes of Catholic Social Teaching in context of our own history here in Maine and around the nation. And, we’re sure to hear numerous humorous anecdotes along the way – no tour of history is complete without those!

Want to learn more? Join us on Tuesday, November 15th at 7 pm at the parish hall, 492 Ocean Avenue.
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About Kevin Concannon:
Kevin Served as Associate Diocesan Director of Maine’s Catholic Charities agency in the ’60s and early ’70s. He served in various roles in Maine state government over a twenty year period including as Maine Commissioner of Mental Health and Mental Retardation, Maine Commissioner of Human Services, Oregon State Director of Human Services, Iowa Director of Human Services and Under Secretary of US Department of Agriculture, responsible for US domestic food and nutrition programs.
Trained as a professional social worker, he is a native of Portland and is a graduate of Cheverus High Scholl, St. Francis Xavier University (BA and MSW) with further postgraduate courses at the University of Connecticut.

More about Our Lady of Hope Parish – A Jesuit Ministry:
Comprised of a wide range of members, representing 25 area towns, we’re an intergenerational community inspired by Christ’s love for all people and the Ignatian vision that calls and empowers us to live the Gospel message and find God in all things.

Baptismal Blankets Made with Love

Baptismal Blankets Made with Love

Baptismal Blankets Made with Love

The Baptismal “Garment”

There is an ancient tradition of dressing the newly-baptized in a white garment. In some families the garment used at the baptism of young children becomes an heirloom treasure, used generation after generation. Our parish has recently started the tradition of presenting the family with a white or cream-colored baby blanket. These beautiful blankets are knitted or crocheted by members of our parish. Talk about hospitality!!  Heartfelt thanks to the individuals who are taking this on — it is indeed a ministry of welcome, to the newly baptized and their whole family.

If you are a knitter or one who crochets, would you like to become part of the tradition and join others in creating these blankets? They’re typically about 36″ x 36″ in a variety of patterns and styles — that’s up to your creative vision and gifts! Let us know. The families love them, and they are a tangible sign of the love and support of our parish.

Generosity, Gratitude, and Grace – Gardeners Share their Gifts

Generosity, Gratitude, and Grace – Gardeners Share their Gifts

Generosity, Gratitude, and Grace – Gardeners Share their Gifts

“Is this a weed?” “Yank it out!” “You know, some annuals might fill this space nicely, and bring color in July.”

“Wouldn’t a restful spot for prayer be lovely over here?”

“Oh, yes, a contemplative space would be lovely – gardens of remembrance.”

It’s a joyous ministry, These gardeners know how to have a good time – together. And, the grounds around St. Pius X are shaping up beautifully, thanks to their hard work each Thursday morning. Unless there’s pouring rain, you’ll find them there, starting at 7:30, wrapping up around 9:30 each Thursday morning. Your help is welcome – and needed – whether on a one time, occasional or frequent basis. You’ll learn as much as you’ll laugh.

Weeds are for the Bees

Weeds are for the Bees

Weeds are for the Bees

There’s not much that is more appealing than the sight – and scent – of a freshly mown lawn. As terrific as that is, the notion of helping pollinators early in the Maine spring is even more appealing. So, we’ve joined others who are giving the bees and other early pollinators a head start by providing habitat and forage for them as part of No Mow May. This initiative started in the United Kingdom and has earned support on this side of the Atlantic, including Portland and other parts of the state.

Nothing ventured, nothing gained. It’s harder than you might imagine for us to see our grass look unkempt, but we remember that we are working to care for our common home in small ways every day – hoping they add up. Seeing bees enjoying those bright, yellow dandelions is uplifting! We’ll see where it goes, but so far, the team’s been committed to seeing it through until Wednesday, June 1st!

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