HISTORY OF THE SERVITE COALITION FOR JUSTICE
The Servite Coalition for Justice came into being as a result of the 1983 gathering of Servite men and women in the United States in Romeoville, IL to celebrate the 750th Anniversary of the Founding of the Servite Order. Proposal A of that 1983 gathering called for collaboration of cooperation the Servite men and women in the United States.
Representatives of the Justice Committees of the various Servite friars and sisters groups met in fall 1986. In spring of 1987 a statement of purpose and coalition was formed. In 1991 a mission statement formulated.
During the 25 years since its inception, SCJ has incorporated the SALT principles:
1. Its projects must be creative and innovative.
2. Its project planning & implementation must involve members of at least 2 American Servite groups.
3. Its projects will involve both men & women Servites.
4. Its projects will influence members of Church & society
The Servite Coalition for Justice — laity, sisters, and friars of the Servants of Mary in the United States of America — strives to bring about a just and peaceful world. Following is an overview of 25 years of dreaming, organizing, educating, sponsoring, publishing, and reaching out for social justice.
1984-86 Developing a vision, contacting OSM communities,initiating intercommunity meetings.
10/87 Formulated shared statement on social justice.
1988 Servites visit Nicaragua to explore political/social reality.
03/90 Works of Justice and Peace Survey.
06/91 Servite Conference on Peace and Justice to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Rerum Novarum. Theme: “Fashioning the Servite Charism for the Third Millennium.” SCJ Mission Statement formulated.
08/92 John Pawlikowski, OSM: Chicago and Omaha presentations— “Putting MaryBack into History.”
02/93 Servite Intercommunity Phone Tree/Letter Writing Network initiated. Focus: global Servite issues (debt relief and deforestation of Amazon) as well as issues impacting women and children.
07/93 SCJ presence at UNIFAS in Quebec, Canada.
06/94 Retreat/Cabrini Center: “Servite Ministry in a Hurting World— Making Hope-Filled Connections.”
04/96 Border Experience: El Paso, Texas and Juarez, Mexico. Theme: “Fashioning Servite Charism for 3rd Millennium.” Resolutions of Conscience formulated.
07/98 Retreat/Frankfort, Illinois: Sister Corona Mary, OSM. Theme: “Images of God, Images of Mary” (Eastern/Western)
09/99 SCJ representative participates in Rural Coalition Assembly in Creel, Chihuahua, Mexico.
2000 Initiated occasional articles for COSMOS.
2000 U.S. Social Justice Survey (of OSMs and OSSMs)— ✦Servite sources of information and formation; ✦apostolates; and ✦top social justice issues.
09/00 Presentation at U.S. UNIFAS: ✦survey results; ✦information, ✦videos, and ✦action suggestions on issues: death penalty, School of the Americas, global debt relief, Acre-Death of a Forest. Shared list of social justice web sites.
12/00 Coalition begins meetings with Secular Servite groups about Catholic Social Justice Principles and how they can be integrated into Servite spirituality.
03/01 SCJ endorses resolution calling for a moratorium on death penalty and legislation to abolish capital punishment.
2001 SCJ information tables at Marian Conferences and UNIFAS gatherings.
05/02 In solidarity with farm workers, endorsed and supported boycott of Mt. Olive Company products.
10/02 Retreat/Cardinal Stritch Retreat House, Mundelein, Illinois. Theme: “Servites Are ‘Servants of the Magnifi cat.’”
2003 Created links with Brazil Servites on global warming and destruction of rainforest.
07/04 Exploratory trip to Brazil/Acre to plan mission experience.
2004 Composed meditations (Spanish and English) on Servite Rosary — focusing on life. Rosary recited at site of splitting of atom at University of Chicago Campus.
12/04 AIDS awareness day especially as it affects Africa.
04/05 Educational sessions in Omaha, Chicago, and Ladysmith on life and issues of Servites in Brazilian rainforest.
07/05 Retreat days in Chicago precede immersion experience into Servite missions and rainforest destruction in Brazil. “Prayer Companions on the Journey” prayer/reflection piece to be in solidarity with immersion participants.
10/06 Seven city U.S. lecture tour, dialogues and retreats with Lina Boff, OSM. Themes: ✦Mary and Ecology, ✦Solidarity and Communion in a Globalized World, ✦Theology of Freedom.
2007 Translation and publication of Lina Boff, OSM’s book: Mary and the Feminine of God.
07/07 Exploratory trip to Bahia, Brazil, as possible site for mission experience.
2007 Presentation by SCJ representatives at OSSM conference in Belleville, Illinois, and at UNIFAS in Portland, Oregon.
2008 Translation of Milton Claro’s book, “The Amazon that we do not know”
09/09 25th Anniversary Conference Chicago, Illinois: “Mary, Lowly Servant of Creation”
by Dr. F. Javier Orozco, SFO
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