Update (August/September 2002)
Election to Take Place at 2002 LCWR National Assembly
An LCWR Vice-President will be elected at the LCWR National Assembly in St. Louis, MO, August 17-21, 2002. Five members left their names in the nomination for vice-president; the following three received the highest votes in a run-off ballot:
Beatrice Eichten, OSF
Constance Phelps, SCL
Christine Vladimiroff, OSB
Current Board Secretary Betty Cawley, CSJ, is unopposed for reelection for a second term.
You may still view the nominees’ statements on the LCWR website, www.lcwr.org. Click on the “Assembly Information” link at the top of the home page, and then click on "Nomination and Election Candidates" to find this information.
From the Executive Director's Desk
Summer in Washington is notoriously steamy, and July 2002 has not disappointed. Each morning brings the same forecast: “Hot, hazy, and humid with a chance of thundershowers.” Inside 8808 Cameron Street, the LCWR staff is generating its own steam, gearing up for the annual Assembly. We are focused on final preparations for what promises to be a wonderfully stimulating and inspiring conference.
During the past month, we have had several occasions to contact you, our members, via WorldMerge, in order to get needed information to you in a timely manner. In some instances, we directed you to documents posted on our own or others’ websites.
What has become clearer to the LCWR staff and me is that electronic communication is fast becoming an essential tool for us to stay in touch with our members. We are better able to get information out - quickly, accurately, and simply. We are able to post documents and critical materials (like the crisis communication plan) on our website while saving on printing, paper, and postage. And we can refer our members to other websites where key information is accessible and available.
For these reasons, I would like to strongly encourage each LCWR member to: 1) Establish an e-mail account and make sure that the National Office has your correct e-mail address. 2) Make sure that you – or someone in your office - has access to the World Wide Web. We will continue to communicate with you through print media, but it is likely that we will be relying more and more on electronic communication as well to get time-sensitive information to you. In the process, we will save some money – and more than a few trees. So, if you are not currently on e-mail, or do not yet have access to the web, please consider the possibility of doing so.
And now, to conclude by borrowing a phrase from Judy Garland, “Meet me in St. Louis!” See you under the arch.
Carole Shinnick, SSND
Proposed 2002 LCWR National Assembly Resolutions now Available on LCWR Website
The proposed LCWR 2002 Assembly Resolutions on Peace, and on Universal Access to Health Care may now be viewed on the LCWR website, www.lcwr.org. Simply click on "Assembly Information" at the top of the home page, then follow the link to the "Proposed Assembly Resolutions."
NATRI National Conference to Address Land-Use and Other Stewardship Topics
A joint NATRI/LRCR Task Force has been working on a broad, inter-disciplinary approach to property and land-use options and issues for religious communities. The resources being developed incorporate the spiritual, ethical and justice questions that arise in the context of our global ecological crises. The publication, planned for early 2003, will also address the planning, legal and financial issues that must be considered whether one decides to sell, lease or keep land and use it and/or protect it.
These topics will be developed as part of the 2002 NATRI National Conference to be held in Tampa, FL, from November 20 to 23. A general session on Choosing a Sustainable Future will set the context for reflection on our connection with the piece of our planet given over to our stewardship. Participants will have the opportunity to further explore various facets of land use by choosing from a series of workshops that address sustainable land-use law, master planning, alternative energy sources, spiritual and ethical issues, as well as new understandings of the vow of poverty that reflect ecologically-responsible living.
The broader theme of this conference, Expanding Horizons, celebrates the vision of communities of all sizes and types that are taking risks to extend their influence in new ways from a faith-based stance. A wide range of other stewardship topics will be covered to address a diversity of interests. For more information or additional copies of the conference brochure, contact NATRI at email@example.com or call (301) 587-7776.
LCWR Regional Initiatives: Intercommunity Environmental Council of Women Religious
Ed.’s Notes: Throughout the year, LCWR regions engage in a variety of projects or initiatives that reflect the vitality and vision of that particular region. UPDATE would welcome your submissions regarding such activities. The following report was submitted by Region 10 member Carol Reeb, SSND.
Prompted by previous collaborations among women religious in St. Louis, MO, LCWR Region 10 member Nancy Wittwer, SL, proposed the formation of a new group that would focus on environmental issues. The proposal was enthusiastically received and endorsed as the Intercommunity Environmental Council of Women Religious (IEC).
In February 2001, representatives from 14 religious communities of women in the St. Louis area gathered to share their vision, hopes and dreams around what could happen by working together for Earth and the environment. Goals were established for IEC involving the need for education, deeper Earth Spirituality, and action. The IEC’s plan is to further the education of the council members and their communities and to extend that education to the broader community.
Some of the issues and actions of the IEC during its first year have included: finding ways to combat global warming (for example, encouraging congregations to purchase hybrid automobiles), planting trees as a group and in cooperation with other groups, writing letters to newspapers and contacting journalists to encourage coverage on hybrid cars and issues such as the regrettable construction on wetlands; endorsing The Earth Charter and planning a study day (“The Universe Story: It’s About Time” was held in January 2002).
Mission Statement: The Intercommunity Environmental Council under the sponsorship of the LCWR is made up of representatives from 14 congregations of women religious and one men’s community from the greater St. Louis metropolitan area. Members share a commitment to deepen their understanding of what it meant to develop mutually enhancing relationships with all creation. Members gather once a month to pray, to share ideas and resources, and to plan specific action steps that will raise awareness around ecological issues within the membership, in their communities as well as in the whole metropolitan area.
For further information on the IEC, contact Corlita Bonnarens, RSM,
Days Of Contemplation 2002
Janice Morgan, SSJ
These are our words as God's people
Together, we will live and celebrate
these words both within ourselves,
and without, among all those we meet.
LRCR Position Opening
The Legal Resource Center for Religious, Silver Spring, MD, is seeking an Associate Director. The primary duties of the Associate Director are to provide legal advice and consultations to religious communities, oversee LRCR publications and provide legal education for religious communities and other related organizations. The Associate Director must be a licensed attorney and have had experience with religious communities and must be able to travel. Knowledge of computer and web-site skills preferred. Salary is negotiable. Starting date preferably October 1, 2002, but negotiable. LRCR provides legal assistant to religious communities in the U.S. and works closely with CMSM, LCWR and NATRI.
Interested persons should send a letter of application with resume to Dan Ward, OSB, LRCR, 8812 Cameron Street, Silver Spring, MD 20910.
Conferences for African Women Religious
A series of All-Africa Conferences for African women religious is being planned for 2003-2004 to address the issues of sexuality, the status of women, and the intersection of faith, gender and poverty as they relate to HIV/AIDS. The conferences are based on a conviction shared by African women religious that there is a great need for them to speak together about these concerns. The agenda of the conference must be planned and shaped primarily by African women, but the funding and coordination must come from outside Africa. We encourage you to learn more about this project by contacting Eileen Hogan, RSM, email firstname.lastname@example.org, phone 718-584-7751.
Workshop on Global Trade
The Interfaith Working Group on Trade and Investment, to which LCWR belongs, will hold a policy workshop, “Global Trade and People of Faith: Wrestling with Ethics and Advocacy,” September 19-20, 2002, in Washington, DC. It is planned for staff of faith-based organizations that make decisions and educate regarding social justice, globalization, poverty reduction, human rights, debt, environmental justice, trade and investment. Registration: $40. For information contact Maureen Heffern Ponicki, e-mail email@example.com, phone 215-241-7277.
LCWR is pleased to announce that Linda Ann Thomas has joined the LCWR National Office as membership coordinator and database manager effective July 8, 2002. A resident of Silver Spring, MD, Linda previous worked in the government and corporate travel industry. She is the proud mother of Kyla and Jumanne. Welcome, Linda!
Has Your E-Mail Address Changed?
At this time of year, many LCWR members move into or out of congregational leadership, which often changes the contact e-mail addresses in the LCWR database. Without the correct e-mail addresses, important information sent via World Merge messages will not reach LCWR members. Help us communicate effectively with you by sending any changes to your membership e-mail address to Linda Ann Thomas at firstname.lastname@example.org.