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APRIL 2020 NEWSLETTER
Realizing change is the most constant and reliable aspect of our human existence, for most beings it is also a great source of distress and unease.  Currently our lives have been turned upside down related to routine, income and relationships. Henri Nowen’s reflection on Easter can bring us to a deep awareness of the  Divine as the source of peace:
 
“Easter season is a time of hope. There is still fear, there is still a painful awareness of sinfulness, but there also is light breaking through. We can be joyful or sad, optimistic or pessimistic, tranquil or angry, but the solid stream of God’s presence moves deeper than the small waves of our minds and our hearts. Easter brings the awareness that God is present even when his presence is not directly noticed. Easter brings the good news that, although things seem to get worse in the world, the Evil One has already been overcome. Easter allows us to affirm that although God seems very distant and although we remain preoccupied with many little things, our Lord walks with us on the road and keeps explaining the Scriptures to us. Thus, there are many rays of hope casting their rays on our life through life.”

Henri Nowen


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TABLE OF CONTENTS

GENERAL


Pray:  The Merton Prayer

Reflect:

EVENTS | EDUCATION 

 

Recurring Events
 


Author Visit: Imani Perry - Apr 2 - Canceled

Tsuru for Solidarity Origami Peace Cranes - Apr 4 - Canceled

Water Walk 2020 - Apr 25 - Canceled
GENERAL
 
Pope Francis Quote
The Beatitudes are the "identity card" of a Christian. They are not about the joy that passes, but about happiness that knows how to live side by side with suffering

Pope Francis
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EVENTS AND EDUCATION 


Recurring Events: 

Siena Retreat Center
Siena Retreat Center intends to continue to be a place of calm, peace and wellness during this uncertain time. In the hopes of curtailing the virus, we are temporarily suspending all operations until at least Monday, April 13.

To check for updates, and for a complete description of programs and retreats, visit  www.SienaRetreatCenter.org or call 262-898-2590.  Partial scholarships are available for all programs!
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Nonviolent Communication Practice Groups. -  Canceled until Safer at Home orders end
Learn more
  • Milwaukee Friends Meeting House, Milwaukee, Every Wednesday, 7:00-9:00 pm.  More information here
  • St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Parish, New Berlin, (1st and 3rd Monday of every month), 7:00-8:30 pm from September 16, 2019 - May 18, 2020. Note:  We will meet on Monday, March 30 instead of April 6.  No meeting on April 6.  More information here
  • United Unitarian Universalist Congregation, Waukesha, Tuesday Morning group (1st and 3rd Tuesday of every month), 10:30 am -12:30 pm from September 17, 2019 - May 19, 2020. More information here
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Weekly Prayer for Reconciling and Healing Racism in Our City - Canceled until Safer at Home orders end
Join us in person at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist, Fridays at 12:15 p.m. for this 30 minute communal contemplative prayer with the intention of reconciling and healing racism in our city. Feel free to pray privately wherever you are in solidarity with those gathered at the Cathedral if you are not able to join in person. Brought to you by:Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist, Three Holy Women, Our Lady of Divine Providence, Old St. Mary's, Saints Peter and Paul Human Concerns/Social Justice Commissions, Urban Ministry of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. For more information, please contact: Anne Haines hainesa@archmil.org.
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Peace Action Wisconsin - Canceled until Safer at Home orders end
  • End the Wars Coalition meetings3rd Wednesday of the month, 7 p.m. Peace Action Center, 1001 E Keefe Ave, Milwaukee 414-269-9525, info@peaceactionwi.org
  • Stand for Peace: Every Saturday, 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. Learn more here. Updates on FacebookStand for Peace is Canceled! We ask that you post a picture of yourself with a peace sign or peace flag on the Peace Action of WI face book page on Saturdays at noon until the corona virus emergency is over.
    • April 4:     King & North-canceled
    • April 11:   51st & Silver Spring-canceled
    • April 18:   Wells & 18th-canceled
  • Check for cancellations on facebook:
    • April 25:   27th & National
    • May 2:      Layton & Howell
    • May 9:      King & Locust
    • May 16:    St. Paul & Water     HAPPY BIRTHDAY FATHER BILL!
    • May 23:    Lafayette Hill & Lincoln Memorial Drive
    • May 30:    92nd & North    
 
 
Author Visit: Imani Perry - Apr 2 - CANCELED
Imani Perry is an American interdisciplinary scholar of race, law, literature, and African-American culture. She is currently the Hughes-Rogers Professor of African American Studies at Princeton University. This event is sponsored Center of Teaching & Learning, the Office of Institutional Diversity & Inclusion, Women’s Innovation Network (WIN) and will take place April 2, 12:00 - 1:15 p.m. at Marquette University's Raynor Memorial Library, 1355 W Wisconsin Ave.
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Tsuru for Solidarity Origami Peace Cranes - Apr 4 - POSTPONED - LEARN MORE
We need your help to fold 125,000 Origami Peace Cranes! Japanese Americans from across the country will gather in Washington, D.C., June 5-7, 2020, for a “National Pilgrimage to Close the Camps”. They will bring 125,000 paper cranes, or tsuru, as expressions of solidarity with immigrant and refugee communities that are under attack today. The 125,000 cranes represent the members of the community who were rounded up and incarcerated in U.S. concentration camps during World War II, including both Japanese Americans and Japanese Latin Americans. Saturday, April 4, 2-4 p.m., Milwaukee Friends Meeting, 3224 N. Gordon Place, Milwaukee. Learn more about the Milwaukee event here. Learn more about Tsuru for Solidarity here.
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Water Walk 2020 - Apr 25 - CHECK FACEBOOK FOR UPDATES
Led by Native American women who have a blessing of the waters of the Menomonee, Milwaukee and Kinnickinick Rivers and Lake Michigan. Saturday, April 25, Menomonee River Parkway. Sponsored by Flowering Tree and Inter-Tribal Water Walkers.
 
PRAY


"The Merton Prayer"


“My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing.

I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore will I trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.”

AMEN.


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REFLECT

Lockdown
Yes there is fear.
Yes there is isolation.
Yes there is panic buying.
Yes there is sickness.
Yes there is even death.
But,
They say that in Wuhan after so many years of noise
You can hear the birds again.
They say that after just a few weeks of quiet
The sky is no longer thick with fumes
But blue and grey and clear.
They say that in the streets of Assisi
People are singing to each other
across the empty squares,
keeping their windows open
so that those who are alone
may hear the sounds of family around them.
They say that a hotel in the West of Ireland
Is offering free meals and delivery to the housebound.
Today a young woman I know
is busy spreading fliers with her number
through the neighborhood
So that the elders may have someone to call on.
Today Churches, Synagogues, Mosques and Temples
are preparing to welcome
and shelter the homeless, the sick, the weary
All over the world people are slowing down and reflecting
All over the world people are looking at their neighbors in a new way
All over the world people are waking up to a new reality
To how big we really are.
To how little control we really have.
To what really matters.
To Love.
So we pray and we remember that
Yes there is fear.
But there does not have to be hate.
Yes there is isolation.
But there does not have to be loneliness.
Yes there is panic buying.
But there does not have to be meanness.
Yes there is sickness.
But there does not have to be disease of the soul
Yes there is even death.
But there can always be a rebirth of love.
Wake to the choices you make as to how to live now.
Today, breathe.
Listen, behind the factory noises of your panic
The birds are singing again
The sky is clearing,
Spring is coming,
And we are always encompassed by Love.
Open the windows of your soul
And though you may not be able
to touch across the empty square,
Sing.

Written by a Irish Capuchin brother

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Pandemic

What if you thought of it
as the Jews consider the Sabbath—
the most sacred of times?
Cease from travel.
Cease from buying and selling.
Give up, just for now,
on trying to make the world
different than it is.
Sing. Pray. Touch only those
to whom you commit your life.
Center down.
 
And when your body has become still,
reach out with your heart.
Know that we are connected
in ways that are terrifying and beautiful.
(You could hardly deny it now.)
Know that our lives
are in one another’s hands.
(Surely, that has come clear.)
Do not reach out your hands.
Reach out your heart.
Reach out your words.
Reach out all the tendrils
of compassion that move, invisibly,
where we cannot touch.
 
Promise this world your love–
for better or for worse,
in sickness and in health,
so long as we all shall live.
 
Lynn Ungar 3/11/20
 

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