What Does Earth Ask of Us?

When the Dominican Sisters Conference (DSC) met in Chicago for Convocation 2012, we were challenged by the question,

What is Earth Asking of the Dominican Order?

Over the past 18 months we have been engaged across the country in a process of reflection using The Faith Praxis Cycle to help us understand Global Climate Change.
The hope was and remains that we are moved to action on behalf of God’s People and Earth.

One year from today, November 30, 2015, the world’s leaders will gather in Paris for what may be the most significant climate summit to date – Paris 2015. Today, on November 30, 2014, the first Sunday of Advent, we hear in the Gospel,

Be on your guard, stay awake.

Our hope is that not only do we stay awake, but that we also awaken our national leaders to grasp the depth of the current climate crisis and the importance of taking the appropriate actions to insure a viable future for all of creation.

We can’t help but note that the timing of Paris 2015 is in such close proximity to our next DSC Convocation in October 2015.

Is this sheer coincidence, or is the Spirit at work?

Over the course of the next year, we will be posting reflections, making the connection between Global Climate Change and the critical issues of our time, eg. human trafficking, water, migration, poverty, etc. We trust this will help us collectively to understand, reflect and take appropriate actions regarding the vitally important issue of the climate crisis.

Our hope is to have sustained communication with our elected political leaders/legislators on the issue of Global Climate Change. We want to encourage them to make sure that the U.S. is in the forefront of setting the stage for greenhouse gas reduction and other appropriate actions. Recently following an historic agreement between the U.S. and China to reduce carbon emissions, President Obama stated:

The United States of America is stepping up to the plate. We recognize our role in creating this problem. We embrace our responsibility to combat it. We will do our part, and we will help developing nations do theirs.

This is the kind of leadership the world desperately needs, and what we as a conference hope to support over the next year through prayer and action. More information about communications to our elected leaders will follow in the months to come.

To that end, we invite you to engage in active waiting this Advent by including the issue of Global Climate Change as part of your Advent prayer and waiting.

Please pray that the reflective process and suggested action will be a meaningful and engaging process for us as a conference as we seek to speak with one voice on this critical issue.

Stay Awake!

In Catherine and Dominic,

The Paris 2015 Subcommittee for the Convocation Planning Committee

Pat Daly, OP

Pat Farrell, OP

Margaret Galiardi, OP

Lyn Kirkconnell, OP

Marcelline Koch, OP

Margaret Mayce, OP

Claire McGowan, OP

Sharon Zayac, OP


About opreach

I am Sister Pat Farrell, OP, a Dominican Sister of San Rafael. We are known as the Order of Preachers, and the Dominican charism of Preaching is very real in my life. The words of St. Paul resonate within me: “Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel!” (1 Corinthians 9:16) The quote on the header of OPreach is from the Dominican Saint Catherine of Siena. "Preach as if you had a million voices. It is silence that kills the world." I live at St. Luke Convent - a House of Hospitality - in River Forest, Illinois with another sister. I enjoy walking, hiking, and photography. The Chicago area has some great places for all of that!
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