by Roxana Bendezú
Director of Communications, Pax Christi USA
Last year, in the midst of a global pandemic, I joined the Pax Christi USA family and with certainty I can affirm today that it has been a wonderful and transformative decision that has filled me with hope for our present and the future of the next generations!
I had the immense opportunity to get to know our dear Sister Dianna Ortiz, OSU (pictured right), who served as our deputy director. She made me feel not only welcomed but also seen and listened to. Her wisdom and vision will always be a guiding light during my journey on this earth. I am infinitely grateful.
After joining the Pax Christi family, I have had the privilege to share multiple spaces with members of the staff as well as with those on the National Council, where we have had the opportunity to collectively reflect about core organizational principles. These reflections have helped us ground ourselves firmly in our values and understanding of our faith in order to achieve our ultimate goal: collective liberation.
Commit and recommit! That is what it takes.
I know sometimes it is very easy to get discouraged and frustrated with how things are going, that is why it is important to be intentional in finding ways to get grounded, think strategically, and choose a role. As human beings with a limited amount of energy, we must recognize that we need each other. We must learn to rely on and keep each other accountable. All roles are necessary and important.
I see my role in our Pax Christi family as the person who supports the collective process of learning and unlearning, the one that will work on shifting narratives that perhaps have been harmful or, at the very least, not very helpful to change the material and spiritual conditions of oppressed communities. As a racialized and politicized immigrant woman of color that has experienced firsthand many of the injustices that Pax Christi USA advocates and organizes against, I recognize that it is crucial to hear voices like mine from all across the globe so that we can better understand the root causes of these struggles.
This is my commitment.
PS: Join me today, Monday, March 8th, from 7PM to 8:30PM (ET) as I moderate a panel with women leaders from Central America to mark International Women’s Day.