Opinions

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Check Your Sources: The Scripture

By Sister Regina Siegfried, ASC

References to “fake news” and “alternative facts” have littered real news and social media sites for months.

Where is truth? What is truth?

I have been pondering the oxymoron, “alternative facts,” ever since Kellyanne Conway dubbed the phrase in January on Meet the Press in her defense of the White House’s false statement about attendance numbers at Donald Trump’s inauguration.

Clarity eluded me until Ash Wednesday when I had the privilege of helping distribute ashes and saying to each person, “Repent and believe in the Gospel.”

From the perspective of a Catholic,

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Why Catholics Should Care About Refugees

By Sister Regina Siegfried, ASC

On Sunday afternoon, I went for a walk in nearby Tower Grove Park to ponder the powerful and challenging homily our pastor had given about “sheltering the oppressed and homeless,” a phrase from the prophet Isaiah from the first reading for the day.

On my stroll through the park, I encountered a family of immigrants and welcomed them to the United States. One of the teen-age girls understood enough English to tell me that they were from Syria. I watched their eyes as we tried to communicate and saw reactions from fear,

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Why We Must March: A Catholic Sister’s Perspective

By Sister Sara Dwyer, ASC

Each year, Adorers celebrate our community’s founding on March 4.

This year, March Forth came early, as many Adorers joined the Women’s March – united in spirit — in Washington, St. Louis, Wichita and elsewhere.

We marched for women’s rights; for health care; for economic, gender and racial equality; for environmental justice; for immigrants and refugees; and for an end to the death penalty, among other issues.

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Adorers, coworkers, and friends all came out to march together in Wichita’s Women’s March

As the world watched,

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Healing the Nation’s Heart

By Sister Barbara Hudock, ASC

On the day of our Presidential Election hangover, as we ponder what the results mean for our country’s future, I direct you to writer and sociologist Parker Palmer’s “Five Habits to Heal the Heart of Democracy.”

In order for American politics to become healthy, we must return to the first home of democracy, the human heart, he writes.

“The heart is where we integrate what we know in our minds with what we know in our bones, the place where our knowledge can become more fully human.”

His five habits for healing the heart of democracy are:

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How Can We Respond to the Violence?

By Sister Regina Siegfried, ASC

As autumn leaves swirl around my city’s streets, I ponder eddies of fear, anger, racism, discontent and unrest churning in our hearts and neighborhoods.

Recently, in my community, a young St. Louis County police officer responding to a disturbance was shot and killed by a teenager. We watched his dignified and moving funeral procession that closed major highways, and felt the grief and pride that overwhelmed both family and first responders.

This scene is played out across the country, most recently in this week’s shooting deaths of two Iowa police officers.

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A Syrian Child Cries While We Pick a President

Posted by Talbiseh Media Center
Posted by Talbiseh Media Center

By Sister Krystal Funk, ASC

Like thousands of people around the world, I viewed with deep sadness a video of a terrified and bloodied Syrian girl screaming for her father after a rocket attack on their town, Talbiseh, caused the ceiling of their house to collapse.

Her cries found their way into my soul, the center space in my heart. I teared up.

Photo by photographer and media activist Mahmoud Raslan
Photo by photographer and media activist Mahmoud Raslan

The look in her eyes seems to speak of the same tragedy as that of the boy,

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Pokemon Go Players Miss the Real Hot Spots

By Sister Regina Siegfried, ASC

The day after a ferocious storm slammed into St. Louis, I walked to nearby Tower Grove Park to see for myself the heartbreaking damage to trees.

Downed trees and branches, although common after severe storms, are always disturbing. Earth, trees, park workers, and walkers seemed to feel the pain over the loss of these old, stately giants.

Off in the distance, Pokemon Go players who had gathered around a hotspot at the park’s music stand seemed oblivious to a huge branch that had fallen close to them.

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Be Free With Your Mercy

By Sister Mary Shaw, ASC

Pope Francis recently published his first book as pope, “The Name of God is Mercy,” which offers a practical way to live the environment encyclical that he completed a year ago today.

That encyclical, “Laudato Si,’” (today is the anniversary of its publication date) holds that everything is interconnected, and that we cannot be indifferent to anything. Yet, we tell ourselves that the refugee crisis, climate change and deportation are not our concern.

When our conscience gets pricked a little, we make a donation and stay at a safe distance to avoid encountering those with difficult lives.

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O The Places You’ll Go (as NOT told by Dr. Seuss)

by Cathy Pankiewicz – originally published in New Wine Press

A few years ago Facebook led me to a lovely post from a woman who wrote about the travels she had anticipated upon the birth of her first child and the one she actually took. Her child was born with Down Syndrome, and the figurative trip to Paris she imagined quickly became one just as lovely, but entirely different. She had fancied a voyage she and baby would take together. It would be one with a mix of blue skies and choppy waters for sure,

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Sex Offenders in the Neighborhood

By Sister Regina Siegfried, ASC

My neighbors and I recently learned that three sex offenders live among us on our block, a quiet, well-maintained urban neighborhood in St. Louis.

Of course, it came as a surprise, but it shouldn’t have. Sex offenders, drug dealers, and similar folks may be closer than we imagine. By law, sex offenders must register their address with local authorities, who share it for safety reasons with the public.

We met to discuss this troubling discovery, armed with information from various websites including their names and the nature of their crimes as well as the names of the property owner and landlord who house them.