Gun Safety Awareness Sabbath: February 16-18

Gun Safety Awareness Sabbath: February 16-18

Gun Safety Awareness Sabbath: February 16-18

This weekend many faith communities are participating in a “Gun Safety Awareness Sabbath,” praying in unity for safety from gun violence for our families, communities, and state.  Psalm 34:14 reminds us to” seek peace and pursue it.”

Statistics show that the rate of gun deaths in Maine grew by 20% in the last decade. It is an issue in all parts of our state. Death by suicide using a gun grew by 27%. Let us learn more – learn how we as individuals and a parish can make a difference, saving lives.

Members of our Social Justice and Peace Commission have shared information regarding groups in Maine who are working together in this regard. You can learn more online at the website of Maine Gun Safety Coalition.

Let us continue to pray — and put our faith in action.

Doing Our Part

Doing Our Part

Doing Our Part

Our fellow parishioners who serve on the Social Justice and Peace Commission often bring timely issues facing our neighbors who are working to overcome situations that have them struggling to meet basic needs – including feeding themselves and their families.

At other times there are opportunities to ask our elected officials to take action by supporting legislation that aligns in other ways with Catholic Social Teaching.

The Child Tax Credit is one such opportunity to use your voice. It has been a successful tool in lifting children out of poverty – which reaps dividends beyond the immediate relief to children and their families.  Perhaps when you read this it will have been included in approved legislations – if so, contacting your representative to say thank-you is also a powerful use of your advocacy voice.

The Social Justice and Peace Commission has compiled resources to make it easy to contact our State legislators and members of our congressional delegation on issues:

Contacting Members of Our Congressional Delegation:

Senator Susan Collins
413 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
(202) 224-2523

Email using form on her website https://www.collins.senate.gov/contact

Senator Angus King
133 Hart Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
Phone: (202) 224-5344
Email from his website https://www.king.senate.gov/contact

Representative Chellie Pingree
2354 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington DC 20515
(202) 225-6116
Email from her website https://pingree.house.gov/contact/contactform.htm

State of Maine
Find your legislators (representative and senator) at this link by filling in your street address and zip code
https://nrcm.salsalabs.org/mainelegislatorlookup/index.html

To reach your Representative by mail:
House of Representatives, 2 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333-0002

To reach your Senator by mail:
Maine State Senate, 3 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333-
0003

Please include your name and address so your Representative can respond.

Go Green For Lent 2024

Go Green For Lent 2024

Go Green For Lent 2024

Join Our Lady of Hope’s Social Justice and Peace Commission, the Jesuit Community and other parishioners in taking environmentally friendly actions as our Lenten practice this year. Consider choosing one of these actions as your Lenten practice this year:

No TV (or streaming) one or more nights during Lent.
Give up one or more single use plastics – e.g. water bottle, straws, cutlery…
Walk or Bike for trips less than 2 miles.
Eat leftovers 1 night a week
Compost Food Waste (Garbage to Garden)
Conserve water by not letting water run while brushing teeth, shaving, or soaping up during a shower.
Eat vegetarian for 2 nights each week (meat & dairy are a huge source of greenhouse gasses!).
Give up purchases in one or more categories (e.g. electronics, books, clothes, shoes…)
Declutter one spot each day during Lent and donate items to charity.
Pray: Do Earthbeat’s Lenten Daily Food Reflection

Increase Awareness of Injustice in Our Society: Suggested Resources.

Commit to taking one or more of these actions and place a green dot in space to the right of the actions on the poster you’ll find when you go to Mass.  This way you can help to make this a community event! Already taking some of these environmentally friendly actions – let us know by placing a green dot and THANKS for your care for the Our Common Home and each other!!

Social Justice and Peace: Doing Our Part to Save the Planet

Social Justice and Peace: Doing Our Part to Save the Planet

Social Justice and Peace: Doing Our Part to Save the Planet

Members of the Social Justice and Peace Commission, a ministry of Our Lady of Hope, finds ways to share stories, along with content on relevant issues in our community – and world. One of the focus areas of these parish volunteers is Caring for Our Common Home – the planet. If you’re a frequent bulletin reader, you’ll recognize the graphic here, and even the message about “unplugging.”

Each month they offer an idea that puts Catholic Social Teaching to work in meaningful ways.

Sometimes those ideas are related to people’s well-being, sometimes to the environment. Most times there’s a connection between the two.

This month, they’ve been reading about the issue of homelessness, and the challenges and heartache that brings to people with no homes and the communities in which they find themselves. This article in Commonweal is one that they are reading and discussing currently. We invite you to read it as well, and join the conversation at their meeting in February, on the third Thursday at 7 pm in the Hall.

And, after you read it online, perhaps take a look at the devices (or charging cords) and small appliances you have plugged in at home when not in use. Unplugging saves energy and money. That’s good for everyone.

Gratitude for Parish Support of Bread for the World

Gratitude for Parish Support of Bread for the World

Gratitude for Parish Support of Bread for the World

Many thanks to those parishioners who participated in the Bread for the World 2023 Offering of Letters advocacy campaign. The Social Justice and Peace Commission hosted tables at each of the Masses on the weekend of June 17 and 18. They sent 63 letters from our parish – and a few have told us they’ve sent their own letters of support as well.

Thank you for caring and making your individual impact on the local – and global – problem of hunger. By taking part in Bread for the World’s 2023 Offering of Letters in support of the Farm Bill, you have helped deliver a message of support for domestic nutrition programs (including Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program/SNAP), as well as funding for critical international food assistance programs.

There is still time to contact members of our Congressional Delegation to express your prayerful concerns.

Gratitude for Parish Support of Bread for the World

Adding our Voice to Those Alleviating Hunger

Adding our Voice to Those Alleviating Hunger

People are hungry. Not just “what’s-for-dinner?” hungry, but “will-there-be-dinner?” hungry. Maine has the highest child hunger rate in all of New England: 1 in 5 Maine kids are hungry.  And, hunger is not limited to the young. We know that.
The Gospel Message is clear: Feed the hungry.

Adding our Voices to Those Alleviating Physical Hunger

We’re suggesting one way to make an individual impact on the local – and global – problem of hunger. Every year, Bread for the World organizes churches, community organizations, and people of faith from across the country to write letters and emails to their members of Congress who have the power to impact the policies and programs that can end hunger. So by taking part in Bread for the World’s 2023 Offering of Letters in support of the Farm Bill, you will help support domestic nutrition programs (including Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program/SNAP), as well as funding for critical international food assistance programs.

We are joining All Saints Parish in Brunswick in this effort. Letters drafted by Bread for the World and addressed to our Senators and Congresswoman will be available at the Masses on June 17 and 18 on a table in the back of the churches along with a volunteer to answer any questions.

It is easy to participate right after Mass:

  • sign each letter in the packet of three on-the-spot
  • add your printed name and address or use a printed address label

Not around on the weekend of June 17/18?  You can add your voice online at the Bread for the World’s web page that will walk you through the process. Be sure to check the box that indicates this is part of an Offering of Letters.

The Social Justice and Peace Commission members invite you to join them

If you would like to volunteer to staff a table at one of the Masses on June 17 or 18, please get in touch with the Social Justice & Peace Ministry at olhsjp@gmail.com or speak to one of the members of the ministry.

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