Weekly Reflections

Weekly Reflections on Justice are written by the Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach staff, volunteers, interns, and visiting Columban Missionaries. We hope these reflections help to guide you on your own spiritual journey working toward justice, peace, and the integrity of creation.

  • What Are You Giving Up for Lent?

    This week’s reflection is the second part of the Lenten Series of our Weekly Reflection on Justice. This 7 week series will feature people from various parts of the Columban community in the United States. Today’ reflection is from Ruth Coyne, a former Ignatian Volunteer at the Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach in Washington D.C.

  • Our Compelling Need to Live as One

    By Rebecca Eastwood, CCAO Advocacy Associate

    “Politics is, instead, an expression of our compelling need to live as one, in order to build as one the greatest common good: that of a community which sacrifices particular interests in order to share, in justice and peace, its goods, its interests, its social life. I do not underestimate the difficulty that this involves, but I encourage you in this effort.”

    – Pope Francis’ Address to Congress

  • February 2016 E-Newsletter

    This month’s newsletter includes a celebration of the first anniversary of the Global Catholic Climate Movement and Columban involvement in the movement. It also includes a Lenten reflection and action guide from the Interfaith Immigration Coalition, news of Columban Fathers on the US-Mexico border, a reflection on Lent and immigration, and an overview of Columban Father Sean McDonagh’s upcoming visit...

  • The Sanctity of All Life: When One Person Suffers, All of Us Suffer

    By Ruth Coyne, former Ignatian Corps Volunteer

    Newspaper headlines these days seem to be almost apocalyptic. We read of bombings and nuclear detonations, of rampages in public places. We are offered pictures of refugees huddled without adequate shelter; we read analyses of the muddle in European refugee policies. American policy seems stalled. Syrians are confined to towns but without food and water. They are eating what they can find.

  • A Seamless Garment of Mercy: The Beloved Community of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

    By Scott Wright, CCAO Director

    “The end is reconciliation; the end is redemption; the end is the creation of the Beloved Community. It is this type of spirit and this type of love that can transform opponents into friends. It is this type of understanding goodwill that will transform the deep gloom of the old age into the exuberant gladness of the new age. It is this love which will bring about miracles in the hearts of men.” – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

  • The Holy Family

    By Jennifer Labbadia, CCAO Communications and Outreach Associate

    The first Gospel reading of the New Year tells the story of the Shepherds welcoming the child of Mary into the world and sharing the Good News of his arrival. After arriving in Bethlehem, the shepherds encounter the Holy Family in the manger, under Jesus’ rising star.

    “When they saw this,
    they made known the message
    that had been told them about this child.
    All who heard it were amazed” (Luke 2:16-21)

  • The Year of Mercy

    By Rebecca Eastwood, CCAO Advocacy Associate

    We are now entering a new year and winding down from various holiday celebrations. If you are anything like me, you have been eating non-stop for the past few weeks, spending time with family members, watching holiday movies, and just generally relaxing.

  • Learning from Different Lives

    I belong to a minority indigenous group in China, the Hani. My people’s faith lies in the belief that all creatures have souls and deserve equal respect. The Columban’s endeavors in social, environmental, and economic justice reflect a similar spirituality. Tracing back to my Hani heritage, as the migration intern, I feel even more closely related to the work Columbans are doing advocating for justice for immigrants. St. Columban once said, “A life unlike your own can be your teacher.” Similarly, one of the greatest philosophical...

  • Human Dignity through the Eyes of Columbans

    In addition to gaining more issue knowledge and advocacy skills, one important thing I obtained from my internship with Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach was the chance to explore the idea of human dignity and to contemplate what we can do to protect it. To me, human dignity represents the ultimate tender care for each individual. Throughout my internship, I witnessed the Columban’s work in issues pertaining to the Trans-Pacific Partnership, climate change, and migrants along the...