Third Friday of Advent, December 19, 2014


We hope that you have found both enjoyment and meaning in the resources Pax Christi USA has been sending out during this Advent season. We are grateful to all of you who have taken the time to pray, study and act with us and the larger Pax Christi USA family -- members, partners, friends -- throughout Advent. If these resources have been useful to you, and if you're in a position to help us continue the witness of Pax Christi USA,  we hope you'll consider sending in a special year-end gift to further the mission of PCUSA. Below is Sr. Patty's letter announcing our Advent-Christmas electronic appeal which we sent out earlier this season. We hope you'll read it and consider giving! Thanks so much!

In peace,

Johnny Zokovitch

Director of Communications, Pax Christi USA


As I write this letter, winter has arrived early in Northeast Washington D.C., and the season of Advent hope has dawned.


Our spirits hunger for this time of joy and peace, for every day we confront the stark realities of a troubled world. Whether it is Gaza or the Ukraine, Ferguson, Missouri, the South Sudan or our own families or local neighborhoods, it seems that an almost unbridled rage resides in the human heart. It is not acceptable that our world is wounded by these conflicts. Nor is it acceptable when 87 of the world's richest people control as much income and wealth as the less privileged 3.5 billion people at the bottom of the economic ladder. Nor is it acceptable when 11.4 million immigrants to the U.S. have no worker protection, or freedom from family separation, or a clear pathway to citizenship. Similarly, it is not acceptable when over 50 million refugees are forced to flee horrific situations and now wander the uninviting world in search of a place to call home.


There are many causes for violence and hatred, but only one real cure. And that is the message that is proclaimed by the ancient prophets: that a child will be born that is the human incarnation of unconditional love. Jesus taught us the power of love-the power to confront economic and racial injustice everywhere; to challenge worldwide violations of basic human rights; and to end the obscene militarization of our planet. The power of love animates our spirituality of non-violence and peacemaking. "Someday," wrote the Jesuit scientist and theologian, Teilhard de Chardin, "after mastering the winds, the waves, the tides and gravity, we shall harness for God the energies of love, and for the second time in the history of the world, man (sic) will have discovered fire."

Highlights of our past year included the culmination of our Regional Dialogues, our recent program at the School of the Americas, and 5 wonderful gatherings of communities of color. In five regions (St. Louis, Southern California, Atlanta, Miami, and Houston) we gathered Catholic "communities of color" specifically to learn about Catholic Social Teaching, the Catholic Peace Movement, and to discuss issues of injustice in these communities and how Pax Christi USA could walk to empower these communities.

Click the donation button to make a special gift today!
(NOTE: You don't need to have a PayPal account to give through PayPal.
Just look for "Don't have a PayPal account?" and use your credit card!)


Much of our recent newsletter deals with economic injustice, particularly the growing disparity of wealth and income in the United States. How much longer will we wait for the trickle-down theory of economic progress to work? Where are the facts to support the laissez-faire philosophy that "all boats rise in a rising tide"? We should turn to and hear the pleas of the many people in our own country who are subsisting on minimal wages to answer these questions. Pope Francis reminds us, in Evangeli Gaudium, we have built an economy of exclusion and inequality. The world will never know peace or justice as long as these disparities abound. "How can it be," Pope Francis writes, "that it is not news when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses two points?"

In the beginning of this letter, I mentioned that Advent and Christmas are times of much-needed peace and joy. It is also a time of giving. Jesus tells us that it is only in giving that we receive. The Gospels encourage us to give, and to give generously-of our time, our money, and ourselves. And we know that the giver is equally changed in the act of giving. It is true that the most direct and encompassing way of finding ourselves-of finding out who we truly are-is to lose ourselves in service to others-in giving to those who are less fortunate, and to organizations such as Pax Christi who work tirelessly and non-violently to address and dismantle unjust systems.

I would ask you to seriously consider a donation of whatever you can afford to Pax Christi during this Christmas season so that we can continue our work of peace and justice. You may send a check into our office (address here) or click on the links in this letter that say "Donate" or call us at 202-635-2741 to make a donation. Your gift will multiply in ways unimaginable to our limited perspective, and your presence will be embodied in the presents you give.


Click the donation button to make a special gift today!
(If you prefer to send a check, send to Pax Christi USA, Advent Appeal, 
415 Michigan Ave, NE, Suite 240, Washington, D.C. 20017 or call us at 202-635-2741.)

In peace and Advent blessings,


Sr. Patricia Chappell, SNDdeN

Executive Director, Pax Christi USA