Hiroshima Nagasaki Faith & Resistance Retreat, August 6th & 9th

Please Join in a August 6 and 9 Faith and Resistance Retreat to Commemorate the U.S. Nuclear Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagaski
On August 6, 1945, the U.S. ushered in the Nuclear Age by using nuclear weapons against the Japanese. 67 years later, we seek to remember the pain, repent the sin and reclaim the future in a Faith and Resistance Retreat. Our retreat theme is taken from Matthew’s Gospel: Why do you harbor such evil in your hearts?’ (Matthew 9:4) In our prayer and reflection together, and in our nonviolent public witness, we will seek to remove the evil in our own hearts and confront and resist the evil that has lead the U.S. to become a nuclear empire. Due to our being a smaller group this year we will only be gathering on August 5-6 and August 9 (see details below).
When and Where:
 
August 5: Gather @ 6:30 p.m. at Stephen and the Incarnation Church, 1525 Newton St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20010. At 7:00 p.m. we will meet in the sanctuary for a theme reflection, action preparation, video of the aftermath of the atomic bombings and prayer. Pick-up food will be offered.

 August 6 (Anniversary of the U.S. nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and the feast of the Transfiguation): Nonviolent witness at the Pentagon and Udvar Hazy Museum where the Enola Gay is displayed. Times to be decided at the August 5 gathering.

August 9 (Anniversary of the U.S. nuclear bombing of Nagasaki): 12 Noon – 1:00 p.m. nonviolent witness at the White House where we will be joined by two Hibakusha (A-bomb survivors) who will offer testimony. We will also remember the anniversary of the martrydom of Franz Jagerstatter and Edith Stein. We will meet at Dorothy Day Catholic Worker @ 10:00 a.m. and then go to the White House for a nonviolent witness.

We sincerely hope that you can make time in these days to join sisters and brothers in saying:

NO MORE HIROSHIMAS!
NO MORE NAGASAKIS!
NO MORE WAR – WAR NEVER AGAIN!
ABOLISH WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION FOREVER!

TRANSFORMATION NOT ANNIHILATION!

CONVERT OUR WAR ECONOMY TO MEET HUMAN NEEDS AND PROTECT THE ENVIRONMENT!

Please let us know if you can be with us.
You may phone, e mail or write:

Dorothy Day Catholic Worker 

202-882-9649
artlaffin@hotmail.com

Jonah House 

410-233-6238
disarmnow@verizon.net

Published in: on July 21, 2012 at 7:06 pm  Leave a Comment  

Report on Holy Week Faith and Resistance Retreat

Eleven Arrested at the Pentagon Good Friday Witness & Report on Holy Week Faith and Resistance Retreat, written by Art Laffin

Focusing on the theme: “Put Away the Sword–Follow Jesus in Nonviolent Revolution,” about 50 people from the Atlantic Life Community,  the New Jerusalem Community in Philadelphia, Loras College in Iowa and other peacemakers gathered in Washington, D.C. from April 4-6 for the annual Holy Week Faith and Resistance retreat sponsored by Jonah House and Dorothy Day Catholic Worker.  Remembering the Last Supper, arrest, torture, trial and crucifixion of Jesus, the retreat included time for prayer, reflection, community building and nonviolent public witness.
To begin the retreat, Cathy Breen, a member of the Maryhouse Catholic Worker in NYC, offered a compelling talk and slide presentation about the plight of Iraqi refugees in Jordan and Syria since the US-led invasion of Iraq, and how being in Iraq with Voices in the Wilderness during the 2003 “Shock and Awe” bombing campaign changed her life forever. Recently returned from Jordan and Syria, Cathy reflected on the horrors of war and the seemingly insurmountable challenges facing Iraqi refugees in these countries, especially families, and also shared some of the ways she and others are helping them. She began and ended her talk with reflections on Martin Luther King Jr. as April 4 marked the 44th anniversary of King’s assassination. Following her talk, The New Jerusalem Community offered a powerful prayer/reflection about our need to continue to live in the spirit of Martin Luther King, Jr.

On Holy Thursday, the retreat community engaged in an early afternoon nonviolent witness at the Israeli Embassy to appeal to the Israeli government not to attack Iran. The witness included reading a statement outside the gates of the embassy (see below), a period of silent prayer, an offering of the Our Father in Hebrew, and singing the “Vine and Fig Tree” song. Following some serious and respectful negotiating with the Secret Service and Israeli security about delivering a copy of our statement to Embassy officials, the statement was accepted by an embassy security guard. On Holy Thursday evening a moving Liturgy was held centering on Jesus’ washing the disciples feet, the works of mercy and war, and the Eucharist.

On Good Friday, the community engaged in public witness both at the Pentagon and the White House. At 7:00 a.m. the community, held a “contemporary crucifixion” in a newly designated “protest zone” near the Pentagon metro entrance (see below the reflections that were read for each of the ten crucified victims as they, wearing black robes, took turns with arms outstretched on the cross). Simultaneously, on the sidewalk leading to the Pentagon metro entrance, eleven retreatants prayed in silence around a cross that had the inscription “Victims of War.” They also held a sign “Put Away the Sword,” and another sign that had the names of the 17 Afghan civilians who were massacred by US military violence on March 11th in the Kandahar province of Afghanistan. Chris Spicer tried to deliver a letter to Secretary of Defense (War) Panetta but was denied by police. After the third warning to leave the sidewalk or be arrested, Pentagon police arrested all eleven (see names below). They were charged with “Failure to comply with a lawful order,” and given a May 18th court date. At noon-time, the community, joined by other local peacemakers, repeated the contemporary crucifixion witness at the White House as hundreds of tourists looked on.

 
Let us pray for each other during this most Holy Week, and for all those in our world who are experiencing now the passion and death of Jesus. And let us be transformed by the cross and resurrection of Jesus as we seek to practice resurrection and be living signs of hope for our world.
 
*Those arrested at the Pentagon were:
Bill Frankel-Streit, Little Flower Catholic Worker in Virginia
Amber Mason, Dorothy Day Catholic Worker in Washington, DC
Kevin Mason, Dorothy Day Catholic Worker in Washington, DC
Art Laffin, Dorothy Day Catholic Worker in Washington, DC
Chris Spicer, White Rose Catholic Worker in Chicago
Sr. Margaret McKenna, New Jerusalem Community in Philadelphia Rosemary Thompson, Peace Activist from Baltimore, MD
Nancy Gowen, Peace Activist from Richmond, VA
Taylor Reese, Intern with Pax Christi USA
Helen Schietinger, Peace Activist from Washington, DC
Brian Hynes, Peace Activist from New York City   
 
 
 
 
Proclamation before the Israeli Embassy
We, members of the Atlantic Life Community, come to the Israeli Embassy today to stand with the “Women in Black” who witness at sites world-wide pleading for an end to wars between nations and civil wars within nations. Our presence in prayer speaks a loud and clear ” NO ” to planning, preparing for, or ever bombing Iran. We believe deeply in putting away the swords – all nuclear weapons – ours, yours and other countries’ – as total implementation of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
 
We agree with Meir Dagan, your former chief of Mossad who has stated publicly, “bombing Iran is the stupidest idea ever heard.” We reject the position of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that more killing and destruction in Iran will build a Middle East at peace.
 
We are pleading these same causes during this Christian Holy Week at the Pentagon and White House, and we join with our Tikkun sisters and brothers who say, “No War on Iran, and No First Strike!”
 
We vigil here and pray for a change of hearts (our own included), and of Iranian President Ahmadinejad, Pime Minister Netanyahu and President Obama for understanding that the only way to peace is with peaceful means.
 
WAR NEVER AGAIN!

Crucified Victims and Desecrated Earth

Introduction Today is Good Friday, the day Christians commemorate the Crucifixion and death of Jesus. Today, vast numbers of God’s global family experience a modern form of crucifixion as they are crucified to a cross of war, militarism, and economic exploitation. In the crucified people of our world we see the crucified face of Jesus. Today, we remember the victims who have been and continue to be crucified and deemed expendable, and call for an immediate end to their crucifixion. We also pray for an end to the desecration of our sacred earth.

Cucified Victims #s 1- 12 Click here for detailed script

 #1–Iraq war victim #2–Afghanistan war victim #3– Pakistan Drone bombing Victim #4–Victim of militarsim and Nuclearism #5–Victim of economic exploitation starving to death #6–Torture victim(dressed as GITMO prisoner) #7–Nonviolent revolutionary victim #8–Imprisoned victim #9–Immigration victim #10–our desecrated Earth

The retreat was sponsored by Jonah House and the Dorothy Day Catholic Worker.

For more info contact: Jonah House at 410.233.6238 , disarmnow@verizon.net and www.jonahhouse.org, and Dorothy Day Catholic Worker at 202.882.9649  

Published in: on April 7, 2012 at 7:43 pm  Comments (1)  

Ash Wednesday Witness of Repentance at the White House

Video of  “Liturgy of Repentance”

Click here to view Slideshow

Ash Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2012 from Noon-1:00 pm at the White House 

“The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent and believe in the Gospel.” (Mk.1:15)
Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent. Lent is a time for personal and societal repentance, a time for radical conversion, renewal and transformation. Living under the brutal occupation of the Roman empire, Jesus declared: “The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent and believe in the Gospel.” (Mk.1:15) Living in the U.S. empire, which Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. described as “the greatest purveyor of violence in the world,” we need to heed Jesus’ proclamation now more than ever.
On Ash Wednesday there will be a prayer service in front of the White House to call for repentance and conversion of ourselves, our society and our churches to the Gospel way of justice, nonviolence and a reverence for all life and creation. We call for an immediate end to U.S. warmaking in Afghanistan; that the U.S. halt all Drone strikes in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and elsewhere; and that Israel and the U.S. cease it military threats against Iran. We call for reparations to Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan; for total disarmament and the abolition of all nuclear and conventional weapons; an end to the U.S.-supported Israeli occupation of the West Bank; an end to torture and the closing of Guantanamo and Bagram U.S. military prisons and other military torture training centers like the SOA/WHINSEC; and an end to AFRICOM and the militarization of Africa. We call, too, for the repeal of the National Defense Authorization Act 2012 which allocates $662 billion for the Pentagon and codified into law indefinite detention for suspected terrorists and their supporters, both foreign and domestic. And we call for an end to corporate domination, justice for the poor and all immigrants, and for the conversion of our war-based economy to one centered on serving the common good, alleviating poverty, and protecting the environment.
   
Ashes will be blessed and distributed. Please Join us.
Co-Sponsored by: Dorothy Day Catholic Worker, Pax Christi Metro D.C.-Baltimore, Pax Christi USA, Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns, Jonah House, Witness Against Torture, TASSC International.  
For more info contact Art Laffin of the Dorothy Day Catholic Worker: 202-360-6416 or artlaffin@hotmail.com.
Published in: on February 16, 2012 at 8:22 pm  Comments (1)  

Save the dates: Dec 2011

VIGIL & RALLY FOR PFC BRADLEY!

After 560 days of pretrial confinement, including 250 days spent in solitary conditions, the Military has finally announced that PFC Bradley Manning’s Pretrial Hearing will begin on December 16th, 2011. PFC Bradley Manning is accused of uncovering the facts behind a system of foreign policy that routinely hides abuse from public scrutiny. “If convicted of all charges, Manning would face a maximum punishment… of confinement for life”.
Fort Meade Main Gate
Maryland 175 & Reece Rd
Fort Meade, MD 21113 (map)

Rally for Bradley at Fort Meade leaflet PDF

VIGIL (or attend the hearing) Friday, Dec 16th, 8am to 5pm

RALLY & MARCH Saturday, Dec 17th, Noon to 3pm

The Fort Meade Main Gate is located in Odenton, Maryland, 25 miles northeast of Washington DC, between Washington DC and Baltimore, Maryland.

Please visit www.bradleymanning.org  for more info.

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Join Us For A Faith And Resistance Retreat: FEAST OF THE MASSACRE OF THE INNOCENTS DEC 27-30, 2011 

Let All The World’s Children Live… Remember The Massacred Children… And Create The Beloved Community In A Disarmed World.

  For more info, please call Dorothy Day CW at 202.882.9649 or Jonah House at 410.233.6238

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Report on the Holy Innocents Faith and Resistance Retreat in Washington, D.C. by Art Laffin

 Focusing on the theme: LET ALL THE WORLD’S CHILDREN LIVE–REMEMBER THE MASSACRED CHILDREN AND CREATE THE BELOVED COMMUNITY IN A DISARMED WORLD, over 60 people from the Atlantic and Southern Life Communities, and the New Jerusalem Community in Philadelphia, gathered in Washington, D.C. from December 27-30 for the annual Holy Innocents Faith and Resistance retreat. The retreat included a moving ritual on the theme of the retreat, several compelling panels with parents and children reflecting on their experience living in Catholic Worker and resistance communities,  prayerful reflection and liturgy,  three nonviolent actions, and a spirited talent show. On December 28, the feast commemorating the slaughter of the holy innocents in Bethlehem ordered by King Herod, the community held an early morning witness outside the Pentagon metro entrance. Displaying a small mock drone warplane, eleven people staged a “die-in” to represent children and numerous others who have been murdered by U.S. Drone attacks in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Yemen and elsewhere. They were arrested and charged with failure to obey a lawful order and releasedseveral hours later with a February 17 court date.*  Following the arrests, as hundreds of military and civilian workers streamed into the Pentagon, the remainder of the community held a prayer service in the fenced-off area outside the Pentagon metro known as the “free speech” or “protest zone.” 

On December 29, the community held a noon-time witness in front of the White House. Using the “mic-check”  form of speaking that is practiced by the Occupy Movement, the witness included a reading of the massacre of the holy innocents (Mt. 2: 13-18), an account of how U.S. Drone warplanes are murdering innocents today, a “die-in” using a mock drone warplane, an offering of peace, justice and nonviolence resolutions for the New Year, and a creative spirit-led dance with people singing “Down By the Riverside.” This same action was repeated again on December 30 at the White House with one addition. Toward the end of the witness, streamers with statements of how Drones can be transformed to serve life were placed on the mock drone warplane by adults and children. The retreat concluded with a closing circle at the anti-nuclear/anti-war vigil site across from the White House that was started by the late William Thomas and where Conception has vigiled for the last thirty years. Let us continue to pray with and for each other in this New Year as we conspire to create the Beloved Community. For with God and each other all things are possible!

  *Those arrested at the Pentagon were:
Bill Frankel-Streit, Little Flower Catholic Worker in Virginia
Amber Mason, Dorothy Day Catholic Worker
Kevin Mason, Dorothy Day Catholic Worker
 Kathy Boylan, Dorothy Day Catholic Worker
Clare Grady, Ithaca Catholic Worker
Marie Grady-DeMott, Ithaca Catholic Worker
Steve Woolford, Silk Hope (N.C.) Catholic Worker
 Liz McAlister, Jonah House
Sr. Margaret McKenna, New Jerusalem Community
Rosemary Thompson, Baltimore peace activist
Joan Wages, Peace activist from Central Virginia
Published in: on November 7, 2011 at 8:36 pm  Leave a Comment  

Update on Art Laffin’s sentencing for KC Witness

 It was a long fruitful day of truth-telling in Kansas City Municipal Court for 27 peacemakers, mostly Catholic Workers, arrested last May 2nd at the site of the new Kansas City nuclear weapons plant. Those arrested were part of a larger nonviolent witness, including 26 others who were also arrested, calling for the transformation of the Bomb parts plant currently being constructed.

When all was said and done the following sentences were rendered:

*16 people given one year probation, one year stay away order from the plant, 10 days suspended jail sentence and 50 hours community service.

*Greg Greg Boertje Obed – Duluth CW  and Eric Garbison – KC CW movingly told the judge why they would prefer jail over the sentence he pronounced and Greg appealed to him to speak out against nuclear weapons. They were both given 7 day jail sentences. Deo Gratias for their life-giving witness!!!

The truth was once again proclaimed loud and clear in a court in the heartland of the U.S. Yet once again we were found guilty. Another deeply held conviction!!! I thank God for everyone who witnessed today in court, especially those who spoke for the first time. Meanwhile, the structure of the new bomb plant has neared completion. And the nonviolent campaign to stop it full construction continues!

With deep gratitude to all who have been praying for those of us in court today as well as for the judge and the prosecutor! We keep our yes on the prize and hold on!
Click here to read more about the action and trial.

Published in: on September 29, 2011 at 2:45 pm  Leave a Comment