Meatless Recipes for Lent –  and Beyond

Meatless Recipes for Lent – and Beyond

Meatless Recipes for Lent – and Beyond

This year, members of Our Lady of Hope’s Social Justice and Peace Commission are promoting meatless recipes for Lent as a way of putting both Catholic social teaching and Pope Francis’ encyclical, “Laudato Si”, into practice. Part of becoming good stewards of the Earth entails living sustainably so that future generations will have enough resources for adequate food and shelter. “Laudato Si” emphasizes that people of the world are of one family with the Earth as our common home. We are all inner connected in the web of life. Preparing meatless meals helps us to think more critically about where our food sources come from and how our choices affect the sustainability of the planet.

When we create simple meatless meals during Lent, we also stand in solidarity with those in the world who don’t have this luxury of choice. Catholic social teaching emphasizes giving preference to the vulnerable and to those living on the margins of society. If we live sustainably, there should be enough resources for all to have adequate food and shelter.

In addition to helping the planet and standing in solidarity with those on the margins of society, sharing meatless recipes creates a sense of community among the participants. Do you have some recipes to share? Keep sending them in so we can all experience both new and favorite meatless meals.

Below are just a few of the recipes submitted so far. You’ll find all of the recipes posted each Monday and Friday of Lent on our Facebook page.

Pumpkin and Black Bean Soup

1 can pumpkin purée 16 ozs
2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can diced tomatoes 15 ozs
1/2 cup onion, chopped, 2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
4 cups vegetable broth
1 T cumin, 1 t salt, 1 t cinnamon, 1 t allspice, 1/2 t black pepper
2 T balsamic vinegar
Sauté onion, garlic, spices in olive oil until light brown
Blend in blender beans, tomatoes, 1/2 of broth, add pumpkin purée and blend
Pour into cooking pot, add rest of broth. Simmer, uncovered, about 40 minutes. Before serving add vinegar, stir. You can add sour cream, if desired.

Spinach-Tomato Tortellini
16 oz. cheese tortellini: cook till tender. Drain, but do not rinse.
14.5 oz diced tomatoes, undrained
1/2 large onion, chopped
1 large garlic clove, minced
2C fresh spinach, chopped
½ t salt
¼ t pepper
1 ½ t dried basil
2T flour
¾ C milk
¾ C heavy cream
¼ -1/2 C grated Parmesan

Sauté onion and garlic in a little oil. Add tomatoes, spinach & seasoning. Cook till spinach wilted. Whisk milk, cream & flour, and add, with cheese.
Cook 2-3 minutes till sauce thickens. Add drained tortellini.
Serves 3-4

Easy Lentil Loaf
1 can ( 15 oz. ) lentils drained
1 and 1/2 cup oats
1 can ( 15 oz. ) diced tomatoes drained
1 cup grated carrots
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. basil
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 egg lightly beaten

Preheat oven to 375 degrees (use a greased 9 by 5 inch loaf pan). Sauté the grated carrots and chopped celery in a skillet with olive oil and set aside.
In a medium size mixing bowl combine the lentils, oats, diced tomatoes. Add the salt, pepper, basil, oregano and garlic powder. Add the sautéed carrots and celery. In a separate bowl prepare the lightly beaten egg and then add it to the other ingredients.
Mix well. Place in a 9 by 5 inch greased loaf pan.

Top with a tomato glaze and your favorite cheese ( cheddar works well )
Bake covered with foil at 375 degrees for 30 min.
Tomato Glaze ( spread over the top and then add the cheese )
2 tbsp. tomato paste
1 tbsp. Apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp. brown sugar
1/8 tsp. salt

Responding to the Humanitarian Crisis In Ukraine

Responding to the Humanitarian Crisis In Ukraine

Responding to the Humanitarian Crisis In Ukraine

Parishioners have asked about established, reputable, and effective organizations who are delivering immediate relief in the places where the our brothers and sisters who are fleeing the war in Ukraine are being served. Indeed, there are many reputable organizations helping with the immediate and ongoing refugee crisis caused by the Russian government’s attack on Ukraine.

The three Catholic organizations listed here have longstanding partnerships with local nonprofit organizations (also known as non-governmental organizations or NGOs) in the countries where they operate. If you are moved to give online, here are links that may be helpful.

1. Catholic Relief Services

2. Jesuit Refugee Services You can learn more here: And this link will take you to more specific information to donate online:

3. Pope Francis’ Pontifical Mission Societies The Pope’s mission work with people who are living in poverty, marginalized, or otherwise excluded are included on this website with a specific fund for Ukraine found here:

If you’re unsure about the legitimacy of an organization or donation request, take your time with your decision. You can look information on their website, search for their recent annual reports describing their work and how their funds are used. Talk to friends or family members to see if anyone has experience with the organization as a donor or volunteer. Never give your credit card number or other banking information to anyone who calls soliciting a donation. It’s wonderful to be generous, and important to protect your personal information.


OLH Parishioners Answer the Call

OLH Parishioners Answer the Call

OLH Parishioners Answer the Call

When the Social Justice and Peace Commission organized a drive for residents and clients of Hope House, just before Lent, the response was inspiring. By supplying them with paper products, household cleaning products and laundry detergent, parishioners not only met an immediate need,but extended the parish’s hospitality. Parishioners let them see – feel – the support of their neighbors. The goods are so important. The welcoming and moral support are priceless.

From Martha Stein, Executive Director of Hope Acts and Hope House: “Thank you so, so much for the wonderful gifts from Our Lady of Hope Parishioners. Every single item, plus financial donations will go directly to our asylum seeker residents and families in the community. And there were so many food gift cards!! fabulous! Thank you for your incredible generosity and support.”

All in all, parishioners donated 4 FULL carloads of product and just over $1,000 in gift cards and funds.

As a Jesuit ministry, we embrace the four Universal Apostolic Preferences, one of which is Walking with the Excluded. We read from the global Jesuits website that Walking with the Excluded means to “walk with the poor, the outcasts of the world, those whose dignity has been violated, in a mission of reconciliation and justice. In all our work, we want to unite people where they are separated, to heal them where they are wounded. We want to work collaboratively in this field hospital of our world, witnessing to a faith that promotes reconciliation based on justice. We want to bring hope to our world, to imagine new roads and to walk these roads to the end.”

Our Lady of Hope Parish is putting our faith into action.

Going Green for Lent – Some Resources

Going Green for Lent – Some Resources

Going Green for Lent – Some Resources

There is an abundant sense of place to this State we call home. From the mountains to the sea, with woods and lakes interspersed, people pull together to maintain and protect their corners of the state. In our earlier post about small steps to care for our common home, we covered everyday things we can all do, combined with others make a positive impact for our environment – God’s creation.

In this post, we want to provide some resources to help us jumpstart our collective efforts. Some listed will be familiar, no doubt. Others may spark some new action. Let’s go!

Meet your farmers at the Portland Winter Farmers Market on Saturdays from 9am-1pm, at our neighbors on 631 Stevens Ave right in the Stevens Square Community Center. SNAP is welcomed; purchases are matched 50%! The Market Info Booth will give you more details. Learn more at

On Sundays from 10-2 South Portland hosts their Farmers Market. In the winter, they are in the old Hamlin School Gym at the City’s planning and development building. From May to October you’ll find them at 496 Ocean Street (in Mill Creek area),

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Repurpose!
Clean out your wardrobe. Donate items you haven’t worn in a long time; you’ll reduce waste and provide stability for our neighbors through our local nonprofit Goodwill Northern New England .

Maine Needs has a variety of opportunities to volunteer, donate goods and supplies. They’re on Forest Avenue near USM.

Homeboy Industries, the world’s largest gang rehabilitation and reentry program, founded by Fr. Greg Boyle, SJ has a mail-in Electronics Recycling program called Homeboy Recycling.

You can also responsibly recycle electronics (including chords and cables) through Goodwill. Learn more about how they handle all aspects of computer donations . Best Buy offers Electronics, Appliances and Fitness Equipment Recycling and describe it here:

Not sure what goes where? Visit Riverside Recyling online to learn.

And, if you’d like some books, article, videos or more to deepen your eco-knowledge, the Social Justice and Peace Commission has also built this initial library of recommended publications on the environment.

• On Care for Our Common Home Laudato Si’ (Pope Francis’ encyclical on the environment)

• Finding God in a Leaf: The Mysticism of Laudato Si’ by Brian Grogan SJ

• At Home on Earth: Foundations for a Catholic Ethic of the Environment by Msgr Charles M. Murphy

• Climate, Catastrophe, and Faith: How Changes in Climate Drive Religious Upheaval by Philip Jenkins

• A Dream of the Earth by Fr. Thomas Berry

• An Inconvenient Truth: The Crisis of Global Warming by Al Gore

• The Peace of Wild Things by Wendell Berry

• New Collected Poems by Wendell Berry

• An Inconvenient Truth: The Crisis of Global Warming
• 2040
• David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet

• Climate Change: It Changes Everything:
• Catholic Climate Covenant video resources:
• We’re Cooked, Part 1:
• Gulf of Maine, Explained: The Warming of the Gulf of Maine
• Gulf of Maine, Explained: Sea Level Rise

Other Publications
• Catholic Relief Services Publications:

Thank you for your interest and for joining our shared purpose of caring for our common home here in Maine – and beyond. God’s counting on us.

Small Steps to Care for Our Common Home

Small Steps to Care for Our Common Home

Small Steps to Care for Our Common Home

Lent, the period between Ash Wednesday and Easter Sunday, is a traditional time for fasting, almsgiving, and prayer. Our Lady of Hope’s Social Justice and Peace Commission and the Jesuit Community invite you to consider taking environmentally friendly actions that show care for “Our Common Home.” By prayerfully engaging in one or more of the following suggested actions, we can collectively steward our resources (a traditional reason for fasting).

We also invite you to share your commitment to undertake one or more of these actions with others in the parish by placing a green dot on the posters at St. Pius X and St. Joseph. By making this witness, we hope that our communal practice can build the sense of community and shared purpose in the parish.

Some of these steps are ones you already have incorporated into your routine, some may be new. And, there are undoubtedly ones that aren’t in this list that could be. Go ahead. Take bigger steps! In a couple of months, we’ll revisit this topic. We’ll learn from each other about the ways that these steps have influenced our thinking, daily actions – and prayer life!

Places to start:

  • Turn off lights when you leave a room.
  • Switch light bulbs to eco-friendly LED light bulbs.
  • Unplug devices and appliances when not in use.
  • Reduce your use of single-use plastics.
  • Replace disposable plastic water bottle and straws with stainless.
  • Replace plastic wrap with reusable silicone covers.
  • Store food in reusable containers.
  • Drive your car less often.
  • Carpool, use public transportation, ride your bike, or walk, when possible.
  • Combine as many errands as you can in one car trip.
  • Pick up litter.
  • Take a walk in your neighborhood and pick up 10 pieces of litter.
  • Spend an hour clearing up a local park, beach, lake, or river.
  • Clean out your wardrobe. Donate items you haven’t worn in a long time.
  • Recycle electronics (including chords and cables).
  • Add a meatless Monday (or other day) to meatless Fridays.
  • Buy local. Buy produce at a winter farmers market

Improve Your Eco-Knowledge Watch a documentary, read a book or an article. Have a discussion with family and friends – and Go Green for Lent! It may just change your perspective beyond this season.

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