CENTER IS OVERJOYED WITH
THE FIRST WORLD DAY OF THE POOR
In announcing the First World Day of the Poor taking place on Sunday,
November 19, 2017, Pope Francis invites Christians to make every effort to
“create moments of encounter, friendship and
with those who are marginalized by performing “deeds not words” that
demonstrate a preferential option for the poor. The observance will include
an evening prayer vigil on November 18 in Rome, at the Church of St.
Lawrence, for volunteers who work with the poor. Why the Church of St.
As a deacon in Rome in the year 258, St. Lawrence was responsible for the
care of the treasury and the riches of the Church, including the
distribution of alms to the poor. After the death of Pope Sixtus, the
prefect of Rome demanded that St. Lawrence turn over the material
possessions of the Church. When ordered to deliver the treasures, St.
Lawrence presented the indigent, the crippled, the blind, and the suffering,
declaring that these were the true treasures of the Church. This act of
defiance led directly to Lawrence’s martyrdom.
Citing the example given in the Acts of the Apostles and other New Testament
letters, Pope Francis states that service to the poor was “one of the first
signs of the entrance of the Christian community upon the world’s stage.”
The Pope also offers an example in St. Francis of Assisi, who served the
poor authentically by keeping his gaze so firmly on Christ that he was able
to see Christ in the poor and vulnerable.
In his closing remarks, Pope Francis indicates that “The poor are not a
problem; they are a resource from which to draw as we strive to accept and
practice in our lives the essence of the Gospel.” Titled, “Let us love, not
with words but with deeds,” the Pope’s entire message can be accessed at
In presenting the Pope’s message for the First World Day of the Poor,
Archbishop Rino Fisichella, president of the Pontifical Council for the
Promotion of the New Evangelization, simply stated, “the first step to
meeting the needs of the poor is to transform the way we think about the
Following in the footsteps of Jesus, St. Lawrence, St. Francis of Assisi,
and Blessed Mary Angela--the foundress of the Felician Sisters--the Felician
Center board, staff members and volunteers continue to maintain that those
living on the fringes of society are integral members of the Body of Christ.
For the past 25 years, the Felician Center has believed that, not only are
the poor “a treasure to behold,” but also “blessed” for “theirs in the
Kingdom of heaven.”
2. MISSION AND HERITAGE WEEK – OCTOBER 2-6. 2017
This year’s theme for Mission and Heritage Week is “Honoring Our Felician-Franciscan
tradition: Speaking the Language of Peace.” Blessed Mary Angela—the
foundress of the Felician Sisters--once
“Remember that everything that disturbs our inner peace comes not from God.”
The renowned Buddhist monk and peace activist, Thich Nhat Hanh once was
asked this question: “Who caused the war in Iraq? “I did”, was his answer.
In a profound sense, his answer was correct. So what is peace?
Peace is more than just the absence of war and violence. Peace is not the
absence of conflict, but the ability to manage conflict constructively, as
an important opportunity for change and increased understanding. Peace is a
commitment to understanding, celebrating and learning from differences of
all kinds. Peace is a commitment not to harm , but also to nurture all
individuals regardless of race, creed, or gender.
People deeply attuned to the unity within the world understand that
everything and everyone is connected. If our thoughts are peaceful, than we
radiate peace around us; but if they are not, then we are spreading discord.
Back in the early ‘60’s Trappist monk, Thomas Merton spoke these profound
words: “We are not at peace with others because we are not at peace with
ourselves, and we are not at peace with ourselves because we are not at
peace with God.”
In Matthew 5, Jesus tells us, “Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be
called the children of God”. This is a call, an invitation and a mandate for
each one of us to be bearers of peace in our families, our communities, our
workplaces and in our world.
During Mission and Heritage Week, and using a PEACE theme, Mission
Integration will sponsor the following events:
Mission and Heritage Week Events:
Commissioning Service for Felician Center staff, volunteers,
After-School Tutoring children
10/6 - Felician Center Board Meeting -- Commissioning Service for Board
10/6 - Evening Peace Site/Peace Pole Installation Ceremony -- Felician
10/5-7 - Children in the After-School Program will experience a peaceful
become acquainted with peace education and skills and engage in
peacemaking activities, including Origami
Peace Doves and Peace Heroes of the Month.
Ongoing - Food Pantry, Clothing Closet and Health-Service Customers will
view a 4-minute “Peace Today” video
and invited to make/sign *Peace Pledges.
Collaborating with Kingstree Methodist Church, Felican Center will
provide prayerful, moral and
financial support for women inmates making Kairos Retreat at Camille
Griffin Correctional Facility,
- Customers “Pay It Forward” by contributing loose change to help pay
for retreating-inmates meals
- Feature peace-themed Op-Eds on Felician Center website and The News
- Distribute peace-themed magnets and bumper stickers
*All constituents will be invited to make/sign Peace Pledges and receive
Peace magnets or bumper