Torture is a Moral Issue - A message from our national JPIC Chair

Advent greetings of peace, dear Family!

I pray this finds you well and filled with the Lord’s peace in this week of honoring our dear Mother Mary. What I most love about our Blessed Mother is not only her YES to God to bear the Messiah, but also her love of justice. During her visit to her cousin, Elizabeth, she uttered the prayer of her ancestors, the Magnificat. She prayed for justice for those who were considered the lowest, the poorest and the most vulnerable. As Franciscans, this too is our prayer. We must collectively echo the words of our Mother Mary and seek justice and peace for all those who are abused and mistreated.

You have no doubt read or heard the massive yet disturbing report from the Senate Intelligence Committee on Torture. From the National Religious Campaign Against Torture:

“Torture violates the basic dignity of the human person that all religions, in their highest ideals, hold dear. It degrades everyone involved — policy-makers, perpetrators and victims. It contradicts our nation’s most cherished ideals. Any policies that permit torture and inhumane treatment are shocking and morally intolerable.”

I am writing to ask you to join with me and raise a collectively Franciscan voice.

  • Check your daily print or online newspaper for stories on the coverage of the report.
  • Write a letter to the editor. Mention that you are a member of the U.S. Secular Franciscan Order (or your Franciscan Province or Community).
  • Forward me a copy of your letter with the name of publication, city and state.

There are talking points and suggestions on the NRCAT website. I will collect the letters and forward to NRCAT – or you can go on the website and inform them yourself. Just copy me whatever you do. If the link does not work for you, visit

May the God of peace give you his peace as we await the coming of Emmanuel!

Wishing you Advent blessings of peace and all good,

Animate Peace

Peace begins within each of us. It is a process of repeatedly showing mercy to ourselves, forgiving ourselves, befriending ourselves, accepting ourselves, and loving ourselves. As we learn to appreciate ourselves and accept God’s gift of peace, we begin to radiate peace and love to others.” ~ Rev. John Dear

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