Pax Christi USA - PSA e-Bulletin
Pray-Study-Act: MLK Day 2014 
In This Issue
PRAY: Celebrating Our Diversity
STUDY: When profiling is "reasonable," injustice becomes excusable
ACT: Take action in honor of Dr. King

On The Web

For reflection, read Scott Wright's article on the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington, "A debt of gratitude" 


 Join in a local act of service with others on MLK Day


 Visit the King Institute's website for numerous MLK resources and links


Read PCUSA Teacher of Peace Shelley Douglass' article on white privilege, "On being Pharaoh's daughter"


Find out more about Pax Christi USA's initiative to become an anti-racist, multicultural Catholic movement for peace

Join our list
Join Our Mailing List

January 10, 2014


Last year, Pearlette Springer, former National Council Chair of Pax Christi USA, wrote an article for our Bread for the Journey blog entitled, "If not now, when?" In the article, she writes: 



"Across the United States, on the third Monday of January there will be music, speeches and good deeds to celebrate the life and achievements of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Our society has changed tremendously since the days of Martin Luther King, Jr. The terminology that Dr. King used such as 'we, our, us' are not part of our everyday language. We now live in a 'me, I, mine' society, a society of self-centeredness, self-absorption and fifteen minutes of fame. We no longer live in a society that believes that our brother's problem is our problem. How do we begin to unite our splintered groups?..."


We hope that this PSA e-bulletin will help to deepen and enrich your experience of the upcoming Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday weekend and celebration. And that it will invite you to take action and witness to the legacy of Dr. King.


In peace,


Johnny Zokovitch

Director of Communications, Pax Christi USA

PRAY: Celebrating Our Diversity

by Cyprian Rowe
May today not be another day of empty promises Beloved God, 
Creator of the just and the unjust, 
Lover of all humankind
share your eyes of love so that we will see beauty in all creation.
Let us, God, as we pass this way make it a way that sings
the glory of all your creation and celebrates the infinite variety 
of your divinity in all and through all.
Help us, O God, to understand that the violence of "isms" -- 
whether racism or sexism or antisemitism, 
heterosexism or militarism, 
is a violation of your creative will. 
Help us to understand, God, that we have neither 
knowledge nor power to know the infinite designs of worlds 
where by your grace we may inhabit. 
Help us explore the heights and depths 
of our need to love and be loved, 
to understand that what we hate 
is often our sense of incompletion. 
We shout against creations that we cannot love 
because we fear and do not understand. 
We need to understand because we need to bow before them 
as being godly as we too are godly. 
Help us, God, and in the spirit of Mary, Mother of the afflicted, 
let us stand by the cross of our own humanity 
loving it and knowing that dying to hatred 
is the only path to salvation 
in the name of our loving Brother, Jesus Christ. Amen.

STUDY: When profiling is "reasonable", injustice becomes excusable

By Rev. Bryan Massingale


The Blues: a feeling of frustration and sorrow in the face of harsh reality; a refusal to surrender despite deep pain.


"The blues" describes my reaction to the "not guilty" verdict in the death of Trayvon Martin. I cannot be dispassionate about this matter. For I know what it feels like to be a black man in America, regardless of the impassioned denials of so many that race had nothing to do with this case.


I, too, have been profiled by police officers, followed by campus safety patrols and stalked by mall security guards for doing nothing more than walking to my office, shopping for clothes, or enjoying an evening stroll-for just minding my own business. Once, while walking on a busy and well-lit street at night, I was abruptly stopped by the police, rudely questioned and roughly searched, under the suspicion that I was the perpetrator of a robbery-only to later discover that the only characteristic I shared with the actual criminal was the pigmentation of our skin, he being much younger, shorter, and heavier than I. This happened despite my being a priest, a university professor, and a respected member of the community (or so I would have thought). The police offered no apology. Nor, to be honest, did I really expect one. Living with such terror and indignity is to be expected...


Click here to read this entire article.

ACT:  Take action in honor of Dr. King

As a group or individual, consider:

  • Volunteer for a non-profit organization that serves families at/and below poverty level (e.g. Head Start programs, domestic violence shelters, homeless shelters, childcare assistance programs, energy assistance programs, soup kitchens, food pantries, etc.)
  • Introduce a teenager or pre-teen to MLK through Pax Christi USA's Peacemaker booklet Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Dream of a Just Community
  • Adopt and walk with a family for at least a year
  • Join your local Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday celebration committee
  • If you are already a part of a group that addresses economic and racial injustices, have the entire group join the MLK committee
  • Become conscious of your own internalized oppression or internalized superiority 
  • Plan a public prayer service using the MLK Day prayer service available in Pax Christi USA's Our Prayers Rise Like Incense: Liturgies for Peace