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Mercy as Love

Our Novena of Peace concludes with the realization that peace is the fruit of love. Love is expressed so many ways large and small. Love is mercy, gratitude, vulnerability, forgiveness, responsibility, awareness, and all the habits we consciously choose that reveal our belief in the sacredness of all life and of our world. It gives […]

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The Habit of Mercy

Like peacemaking, mercy is a habit of being. Conscious choice is the key to creating any new habit. Habits are the things we do repetitively. They are helpful to our being (such as exercise or meditation) or harmful (substance abuse or smoking). Habits are conscious or unconscious. To create peace we have to consciously choose […]

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Mercy as Responsibility

Mercy flows from response-ability; the ability to respond. This story illustrates how we are intrinsically hardwired to respond to each other: Once there was an elderly couple who delighted in the little boy who lived across the street. They loved his daily visits to play on the tire swing they had put up for their […]

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Remembering Wounded Knee: Mercy in Reconciliation

Peace is impossible without truth and reconciliation. On December 29, 1890, soldiers of the US Army’s 7th Cavalry massacred 300 Lakota Sioux (including women and children) near Wounded Knee creek on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. Tomorrow, December 29, 2015, Lakota elders who are descendants of the original seventy-five survivors (known as Takini) […]

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Mercy & Forgiveness

Here, then, is the reason for the Jubilee: because this is the time for mercy. It is the favorable time to heal wounds, a time not to be weary of meeting all those who are waiting to see and to touch with their hands the signs of the closeness of God, a time to offer […]

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Mercy Flows from Gratitude

Mercy and compassion flow naturally from gratitude. I’ve seen this exemplified in people who have instinctively grateful personalities. One especially inspiring, grateful-by-nature person I’ve observed was Dr. Lester Sauvage. I was lucky enough (and very grateful!) to work with him on his final book Opening Hearts, which was his treatise on everything he found important: […]

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Mercy and Vulnerability

Christmas is a holy day commemorating extreme vulnerability. Jesus coming into the world as a tiny infant connects him to every other human being. In Jesus we see God’s vulnerability. Vulnerability, according to Brene Brown, PhD, a sociologist and researcher, is the willingness to say I love you first; it is a willingness not to […]

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Cultivating Peace through Mercy

Today on the first day of our Novena of Peace, Pope Francis invites us to “become islands of mercy in the midst of the sea of indifference!” Seeing the Sacred in all things will be the Spark that lights our way. Seeing with Merciful Eyes Changes Everything Our world is infected with religious fundamentalists who […]

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Novena for Peace Ritual 2015

Prayers & Questions for Meditation & Reflection STEP 1: In preparation for your time of meditation and prayer, find a quiet place where you can sit or recline comfortably. Take a moment to center yourself. Call all of your being into this moment leaving all your cares and worries for another time. Breathe deeply. If […]

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Preparation for the 2015 Novena for Peace within the Extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy

Violence versus Peace: A Global Struggle It may seem that the world is becoming more unstable, more violent, less compassionate, and less forgiving. In many parts of the world, and for many people, that is true. Death and destruction—both the real and imagined as entertainment—gets an awful lot of media attention, which adds to the […]

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