Tag Archives: Our Lady of Guadalupe

ADVENT 2015: Reflection for the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Dec. 12


by Arturo Chavez

Zechariah 2:14-17 or Revelation 11:19a, 12:1-6a, 10ab | Luke 1:26-38 or 1:39-47

Our Lady of Guadalupe“Blessed is she who trusted that God’s words to her would be fulfilled…” (Lk 1:45)

Today we celebrate one of the holiest days of the year for Americans throughout North, Central, and South America. The feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the Mother of the ONE Church in America, is a story of how God acted in a people’s history to bring light in a time of great darkness. The earliest account of the Guadalupe story states that “when it was night,” a great sign appeared in this part of the world: “a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon at her feet” (Revelation 12:1).

This gentle, pregnant woman came with a message of hope, a vision of unity from the God of “What is Near and Together.” Speaking to the powerful through a humble and wise Indian man, she offered all her children the opportunity to build together a Church where the homeless are welcomed, the sorrowful comforted, the sick healed, and the voiceless empowered. The imprint of her lovely brown face on the strands of Juan Diego’s garment still calls to the Church in America to weave together the many races and cultural groups of the continent into a “new creation.”

The message of the Virgin of Guadalupe is the same one she sang over two thousand years ago in her beautiful Magnificat. “God,” she says, “has looked upon my lowliness and from this day all generations shall call me blessed!” (Luke 1:48). Mary, the poor, young woman from Nazareth, knew what it meant to count for nothing in this world. She, like Juan Diego, lived her earthly life as a member of a conquered people living under occupation. Yet even in the face of a seemingly hopeless reality, Mary could envision a new reality — God’s Reign dawning upon the world from inside her womb.

This reign, Mary proclaimed, will be a complete revolution — not of swords and violence — a total change in the social order as we know it now. The poor will be lifted up and partake in a sumptuous banquet, while those who are rich in their greed and pride will fall on their faces and go away empty. This is not the cruel payback of an angry god; rather, it is a compassionate way of bringing empowerment and healing to the disinherited, and an opportunity for conversion for those who will learn in no other way.


Our Lady’s temple is yet to be built. Can we begin to envision it? Design the plan for it? Provide the labor for it?

How can we offer ourselves — in the words of St. Paul — “as living stones” for the creation of the ONE Church in America and in the world?



* This reflection is from Awakening the Prophet Within: Reflections for Advent 2006, by Dr. Arturo Chavez. Dr. Chavez is the President of the Mexican American Catholic College in San Antonio and former National Council member of Pax Christi USA. For reflections for every day of Advent and the holy days of the Christmas season, you can purchase and download an e-reader version of The Promise of Light: Reflections for Advent 2015 by clicking here.

ON THE LINE: November 2015 edition includes groups acting on Israel-Palestine, the #FightFor15, the refugee crisis, and more

Compiled by Johnny Zokovitch

Each month, “On The Line” features news items and announcements from around the nation featuring Pax Christi members, local groups, regions and partners.

PAX CHRISTI METRO NEW YORK HOSTS HUMAN RIGHTS DAY EVENT ON ISRAEL-PALESTINE: (from PC Metro New York website) PC Metro New York will commemorate Human Rights Day and remember Holy Innocents on Thursday, December 10th, when Rosemarie Pace, Director of PCMNY, will be presenting “A Report Back from the West Bank of Occupied Palestine” based on the recent Pax Christi Pathways to Peace Pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Ms. Pace will show photos and share stories of the Living Stones she met on this heart-wrenching and heart-warming journey. The event will take place at Casserly Hall, St. Joseph’s Greenwich Village Church, 7 p.m. For more information, go to http://www.nypaxchristi.org/events.html

Rosemarie Pace, PC Metro NY coordinator (center) at the Separation Wall in Bethlehem.

Rosemarie Pace, PC Metro NY coordinator (center) at the Separation Wall in Bethlehem in the Occupied West Bank.

PAX CHRISTI MEMPHIS RALLIES FOR THE FIGHT FOR $15: (from Paul Crum, PC Memphis) Pax Christi Memphis participated in the Memphis Fight for $15 parade on Tuesday, November 10, to show our support for raising the minimum wage to a living wage and to obtain union rights. This action is one of over 270 taking place around the nation. After the parade, the group went to the Quaker Meetinghouse for a potluck dinner to discuss the day’s events and prepare for their monthly meeting. Read more about PC Memphis activities at http://paxchristimemphis.org/

Kathy O’Leary of Pax Christi New Jersey accepting a certificate from New Jersey Peace Action recognizing the Shrine of St. Joseph as an official “peace site.”

Kathy O’Leary of Pax Christi New Jersey accepting a certificate from New Jersey Peace Action recognizing the Shrine of St. Joseph as an official “peace site.”

PAX CHRISTI ILLINOIS LOCAL GROUP HIGHLIGHTS DOROTHY DAY: (from Nancy Oetter, PC Illinois state co-coordinator) Pax Christi Servants/St. Thomas (IL) held a viewing of the movie “Dorothy Day:  Don’t Call Me a Saint” at St. Thomas the Apostle parish in Naperville, IL. This was an attempt to educate folks about Dorothy Day and the Catholic Worker movement and why Pope Francis highlighted her witness and life when he spoke about her in his address to the U.S. Congress in September. In addition to the folks who attended, the movie has been made available to individuals in the parish who would like to host future viewings.

HOLY CROSS PAX CHRISTI CAMPUS CHAPTER CO-SPONSORS REFUGEE AWARENESS WEEK: (from the College of the Holy Cross website) College of the Holy Cross students, faculty and staff, hosted “Refugee Awareness Week” at the end of October. The week helped to raise awareness of the complex social justice issues surrounding the ongoing refugee crisis around the world… The Pax Christi chapter sponsored advocacy tables set up daily in the Hogan Courtyard to offer more information about refugees around the world, a chance to sign online letters and petitions to Congress regarding the crisis, and to collect monetary donations for the Jesuit Refugee Service. … Pax Christi also sponsored a candlelight vigil as an act of solidarity with refugees from around the world. Read more at http://news.holycross.edu/blog/2015/10/27/the-holy-cross-community-to-raise-awareness-for-refugee-crisis-with-a-weeklong-series-of-events/


PC Southeastern South Dakota members at the 1st annual Sioux Falls Peace Festival.

PAX CHRISTI NORTHERN CALIFORNIA HOSTS REGIONAL ASSEMBLY: (from Tom Webb, PC Northern California) Nearly 100 people gathered for Pax Christi Northern California’s assembly “Creative Nonviolence: Peacemaking in the 21st Century” on Saturday, October 17th. They listened carefully as a panel featuring Sr. Megan Rice, Elizabeth Murray and Rivera Sun responded to questions from Pax Christi moderator Lorin Peters examining the signs of the times and what members of the faith community could do to respond. Rice is certainly known among many in Pax Christi circles, and for those with links to Pace Bene, Rivera Sun has been a widely-followed speaker on non-violence. Murray on the other hand is new to the movement. After spending 27 years with the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) as a Middle East intelligence officer, Murray retired and has dedicated her life to peacemaking. She resides at the Ground Zero Center for Nonviolent Action outside Tacoma, WA as a volunteer. She is also a regular participant in talks given by Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity, founded by Ray McGovern… Read more at https://paxchristiusa.org/2015/10/20/regional-event-pax-christi-northern-california-hosts-creative-nonviolence-peacemaking-in-the-21st-century/

Lorrain Taylor of 1000 Mothers to Prevent Violence, recipient of the PC Northern California Peacemaker Award

Lorrain Taylor of 1000 Mothers to Prevent Violence, recipient of the PC Northern California Peacemaker Award at their regional assembly.


Upcoming or Ongoing Events:

November is the International Month of Global Climate Action

Nov. 13-15: Retreat with PCUSA Ambassador of Peace John Dear at Kirkridge in Pennsylvania

Nov. 14: Pax Christi Massachusetts retreat with Sr. Helen Prejean at St. Susanna Parish, Dedham, MA; contact Pat Ferrone at patferrone@rcn.com for info

Nov. 20: Pax Christi USA gathering at the SOA in Columbus, GA

Nov. 20-22: SOA vigil and action, Columbus, GA

Nov. 21: Alliance for Fair Food National Day of Action

Nov. 29: Global Climate March

Nov. 28-Dec. 24: Advent e-Retreat with Erie Benedictines

Nov. 29: Advent begins

Dec. 4-6: Advent Retreat, “How Do Our Lives Change?” at the Birmingham Catholic Worker, contact shelleymdouglass@gmail.com

Dec. 10: International Human Rights Day

Dec. 10: PC Metro New York’s Report Back from the West Bank of Occupied Palestine, New York City, 7 p.m.

Dec. 12: Our Lady of Guadalupe observance

Dec. 25: Christmas

Dec. 27: Holy Family observance

Dec. 27-28: Feast of the Holy Innocents Retreat and Action at STRATCOM headquarters in Omaha, NE; contact frank.cordaro@gmail.com or 515 292-4781 for more info

Dec. 28: Massacre of the Holy Innocents observance

Jan. 1: World Day of Peace

Jan. 3: Epiphany observance

Jan. 3-13: Witness Against Torture Fast and Action in DC

Jan. 18: MLK Day observance



PC Madison (WI) sponsored the event, “The Francis Effect: Reflections on the Pope’s Addresses to Congress and the United Nations Assembly” in October. Congressman Mark Pocan and others offered their reflections on Pope Francis’ visit to the United States … The Pax Christi Anti-Racism Team (PCART) is looking for new members … PC Metro D.C.-Baltimore members Dennis Warner and Pierre Thompson wrote an excellent article about the situation in Palestine and Israel … PC Maine members were among those protesting at Bath Iron Works the christening of a new warship … PC South Dakota has posted photos and a short write-up about their October conference with Martha Hennessy, granddaughter of Dorothy Day … PC New Jersey members participated in a ceremony dedicating the Shrine of St. Joseph as an official peace site. You can see a video of the dedication here and read about it in their newsletter herePC El Paso (TX) continued their monthly film series. November’s film was “The Power of Nightmares: The Rise of the Politics of Fear” … PC Beverly (MA) sponsored a day of reflection with PCUSA Ambassador of Peace Nancy SmallPC Northeast Florida co-sponsored a presentation on the death penalty recently … Mariposa (CA) Pax Christi teamed up with other organizations to present a local screening of “Merchants of Doubt”, a documentary exposing a concerted strategy to create doubt about the facts of climate change … The electronic version of the Advent reflection booklet is available now … Pax Christi International’s November 2015 newsletter is online … See more local and regional updates in the Fall-Winter 2015-16 edition of The Peace Current