National Migration Week Interfaith Prayer Service
On September 20, 2022, an interfaith prayer service was held to commemorate National Migration Week. People of faith came together to pray and share stories as an invitation to care for each other. A recording of the presentation is available to you below.
2022 Pope Francis’ World Day of the Poor
A U.N. Side Event. November 11, 2022, at the Church Center for the United Nations, New York City. Sponsored by Fordham University’s Graduate Program in International Political Economy and Development (Fordham IPED), Catholic Relief Services (CRS), and Caritas Internationalis. This event was also live-streamed on YouTube.
Screening of The Letter
The film, “The Letter” has been released to bring to life the words of Pope Francis in Laudatio Si. This extraordinary encyclical challenges everyone in the human community to respond to the cries of God’s creation. Though I have attended group studies, lectured on its content, and read the document and responses of many theologians, I realized that this presentation reminds all of us how we are a visual generation. The thoughts of the Pope are brought to the floor as we witness the embodiment of his words. While he is a man of hope we recognize that too many of us take on the attitude of “that’s the way it is”. Tragedy strikes but is soon forgotten. We remember the Australian Forest fires, but we have our own problems. When the tsunami strikes and destroys thousands of lives, we extend our charitable resources but then go back to our regular existence. This recent effort by creative caring people to bring home the depth of meaning of the Pope’s letter to all his brothers and sisters must challenge us to accompany him as he leads us.
I would not attempt to summarize the gift that this work is, but I would hope to share with you some points which would encourage you to view The Letter with others and discuss it. We must just not allow it to be a merely external moment but must become an evangelical moment of conversion and commitment. Our Scriptures proclaim that when God created the Universe it was good. He made us its stewards. Sad to say, though the centuries have seen progress in our collaboration with the Divine, we have wasted too many opportunities and forgotten our common concerns for our neighbors, and remained in primitive stances of self-advancement with little sight for who and what comes after our mortal lives on this planet. The main protagonists of the film call us to be responsible personally and socially. The woman of science tells us frankly that we have the tools of science but that is not enough. We must also touch the transcendent in our lives if we are to be faithful to the Creator and the Creation. Caring for God’s creation is not a political strategy, it is a moral obligation that is given to us from the Patriarchs, Prophets, and Saints. The Canticle of the Sun and Moon given to us by Francis of Assisi is the fruit of his meditation on the words and works of the holy men and women of history. His namesake reminds us we can do no less and much more to give praise to the Divine.
The Letter focuses us on people. It attunes us to their struggles caused very often by others. They are listening to the cries of many in their lands. We must listen to those same cries. What can we do? Alone, we can do nothing. With God, and each other, all things are possible. See this visual recognition of the Pope’s mission to us. Work on your block, in your parish, with your neighbor. Be surprised by Grace.
Fr. Brian E. McWeeney is the Director of the Office of Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs at the Archdiocese of New York
A Conversation with People of Faith: Welcoming Persons Without Homes
A conversation and reflection on:
• The call to welcome persons without homes
• Experiences as persons of faith committed to unhoused persons
• Experiences of unhoused persons and how they are perceived
• The ways people of faith in NYC already welcome persons without homes
• The new possibilities that are open to all of us
Wednesday, January 25, 2023, at 1:30 pm.
This event was sponsored by Sisters of Charity of New York, LEFSA, Interfaith Assembly on Homelessness and Housing, and Community of Sant’ Egidio.
Songs for the Earth Concert
On June 5, 2023, The Church of St. Francis Xavier held SONGS FOR THE EARTH, a concert featuring the Xavier Choir, Bell Choir, musicians, and dancers. You can enjoy this performance for free on Youtube via the recorded livestream below!
Additional previous events are listed below.