Community Flashpoints

  • Most of the world had not heard of the jihadist Islamic group Boko haram (translated, “Western education is sinful”), until they were suspected in the recent kidnapping of Gilbert Boussiere CND, a sister of the Congrégation of Notre Dame in Cameroon. More recently, the group was implicated in the tragic bombing in a busy suburb of Abuja, Nigeria, where sisters of the Society of the Holy Child Jesus work, and in the kidnapping of 100 Nigerian schoolgirls. We continue to pray for all victims and perpetrators of terrorism.
  • The Conference on Human Trafficking in the Philippines was a huge success. It was co-sponsored by the Catholic Bishops Conference in the Philippines and Talitha Kum (formerly APWRATH)—an organization of women religious against trafficking).  Almost 400 people attended, including our reporter Judy Padasas CCV and other sisters from UNANIMA communities. One result: the Secretary of the Department of Justice is going to present the Department of Education with a mandate to include human trafficking in the curriculum of both lower and higher level schools.
  • The Holy Union Sisters have undertaken three water projects in the past year. One was for a school in St. Michel, Haiti. After a cholera epidemic following the 2010 earthquake, S Elizabeth Kunsah SUSC (a native of Cameroon) was the catalyst for a project that involved a technician from Germany, and grants from a Dublin foundation and a French organization. After this global effort there is a good system producing 900 gallons of pure water daily, for school and village.
  • Maureen Keady CSB has worked for some 25 years in a lower income, heavily populated and ethnically diverse area of Sydney, and gave 10 years’ service at the Mamre Centre, which provides a place of welcome, English lessons, family support and other skills for Sudanese women in the area. Maureen has walked as friend and helper to so many Sudanese families, who loved her warmth, humor and gift of music!
  • Sally Ann Brickner, Social Justice Coordinator of the Congregation of the Sisters of Saint Agnes, suggested this link to the Pace e Bene non-violence campaign.