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Education for Peace

September 20, 2013

by Sister Valerie Heinonen, osu, Director of Shareholder Advocacy, Mercy Investment Services

PeaceOn September 21, the United Nations recognizes the International Day of Peace. For more than 30 years, the UN has dedicated one day in September for its members and people around the world to observe our progress toward peace and renew our efforts to create a peace-filled world.

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What Does Mercy Mean to You?

September 19, 2013

By Isaac Garcia, Institute Communications Office

What does Mercy mean to you? Share in six-word sentences.

September 24 is Mercy Day, a worldwide day of celebration for the Sisters of Mercy and all Mercy affiliated ministries! On September 24, 1827, Mercy foundress Catherine McAuley opened the “House of Mercy” on Baggot Street in Dublin to educate poor, young girls and house homeless women and children. Today that same Mercy spirit lives in the many schools, health care facilities and pastoral care centers started and staffed by the Sisters of Mercy and lay staff.

To help celebrate Mercy Day, we’re asking the question, “What does Mercy mean to you?” But there’s a twist: we’re looking for six-word sentences.

Here are some examples:

  • Mercy is stepping outside of yourself.
  • Never saying that ‘it is enough’.
  • Passion for helping, love in action.
  • Fifty years later, blessed beyond measure.
  • Called to nurse. Lived through Mercy.

Whether you want to respond with a simple six-word email or a YouTube video, send your sentences to socialmedia@sistersofmercy.org or leave a comment in the blog, using the embedded Facebook post below or tweet @SistersofMercy using #MercyDay. Be creative! However you want to share, we’d like to hear from you!

We will highlight some of our favorites on Facebook and Twitter on Mercy Day and share the rest in a blog post the day after. To be included on the Mercy Day social media sharing, please reply by September 23.

Learn more about Mercy Day and learn about Catherine McAuley.

A Refreshing Breeze

September 17, 2013

By Sister Renee Y.

Gentle BreezeIt was a joy to open the windows this morning. Behind last night’s scattered storms rolled a sweet breeze, washing away yesterday’s heavy heat.

This refreshing gift is a perfect symbol for the solemnity observed last week by Jewish people throughout the world – Yom Kippur. Yom Kippur, also known as Day of Atonement, is the holiest day of the year for the Jewish people. Its central themes are atonement and repentance – refreshment from the burdens that weigh our souls.

It is a day to ask for and to offer forgiveness, that sweet breeze which clears the heart of hate, anger, vengeance and judgement. These oppressive attitudes can occupy our spirits in both obvious and invisible forms.

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Speaking Out for Those Who Labor for Us

September 10, 2013

By Social Responsibility Team, Mercy Investment Services

A hundred times every day I remind myself that my inner and outer life depend on the labors of other men, living and dead, and that I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure as I have received and am still receiving. — Albert Einstein

A street in Bangladesh, site of Rana Plaza

A street in Bangladesh, site of Rana Plaza


The 1,129 people who died in the Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh this spring remind us that depending on the labor of others also means sharing in their tragedies. While we cannot give in the same measure that they have given, our reaction to this tragedy matters very much to the 3.5 million people, 80% of whom are young women, who still work in Bangladesh’s garment industry.

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A Time to Weep

September 4, 2013

By Ryan Murphy, Institute Justice Team

Wilson, age 10, writes an open letter asking for his family to stay together

Wilson, age 10, writes an open letter asking for his family to stay together

Paraphrasing Ecclesiastes 3:4 and echoing the recent sentiment of Pope Francis when he visited the Island of Lampedusa, Sister of Mercy JoAnn Persch began Thursday’s immigration panel by stating “now is a time to weep.” In the less than two days I spent in Chicago, I have been reminded several times that it is a time to weep and a time to mourn. How could one have any other reaction when families continue to be ripped apart by record mass deportations? Though the immigration reform panel at Saint Xavier University was excellent, it was also emotionally difficult. In our audience was a mother with two young children, ages 10 and 6. Prior to starting our event, the panelists and I learned that the children’s father was recently arrested and awaiting deportation. It was clear: the family’s forced separation was an emotional hardship that the mother and older child were trying to process internally. (See the image of 10-year-old Wilson’s letter.)

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Mercyhurst University Greens Campus

August 31, 2013

By Brittany P.

Mercyhurst University: even their logo is green.

Mercyhurst University: even their logo is green.

Recycling is the just the beginning of Mercyhurst University’s efforts to “green” its campuses and the surrounding community in Erie, PA. The university, founded by the Sisters of Mercy in 1926, has ventured into composting, farming and encouraging the use of refillable water bottles.

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Cincinnati Business, Faith Leaders Discuss Immigration Reform

August 30, 2013

By Ryan Murphy, Institute Justice Team

A panelist discusses immigration reform at a roundtable discussion at Cincinnati, Ohio on August 27, 2013

A panelist discusses immigration reform at a roundtable discussion at Cincinnati, Ohio on August 27, 2013

Cincinnati was the first stop in a series of panels to promote just and humane immigration reform and it was nothing short of a success. On August 27, a total of about 70 ‘Cincinnatians’ attended two roundtable discussions on the need for comprehensive immigration reform. Personally, it was a great experience. Hearing such passionate panelist discuss the modern day fight for civil rights in the National Museum of the Underground Railroad was insightful to say the least. Especially poignant was that the events were hosted on the eve of the 50 year anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech.

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