Sisters Rededicate Peace Garden with Local Native Americans
A peace site in front of Doran Hall on the Sisters of Charity property, first established in 1991, was transformed into a garden in 2013. At the conclusion of Earth Week, on Saturday, April 23, 2022, this Peace Garden was rededicated.
Local Native Americans led a drumming circle and joined the sisters and visitors in song and prayer as they witnessed a blessing of the site. The steady beats of the sacred Instrument reminded us all to “rededicate our hearts to peace.”
Sisters gathered around the site reminiscing the planting of the garden and tree in front of Doran Hall and Queen of Peace Chapel.
Sister Edie Strong led the rededication in remembrance of what was, what is and what will be. She stated, “We live in a wounded word. We are all aware the war raging in Ukraine. The people of Ethiopia and Yemen face famine and drought. Much of the world is facing a food shortage, because of the war. Political polarization in this country gridlocks so much of response to climate change and the needs of people. Climate change has the entire world on the brink of a need to drastically cut carbon emissions if we are to save our Earth from disaster.
“Peace is sorely needed but doesn’t come easy. Peace is a gift from God.
“Peace is not only the absence of war, oppression, social unrest, and enslavement. Peace is not only weather that is kind to our crops, our homes, and our livelihoods. Peace is not only food security, adequate housing and healthcare, employment and access to education for all peoples. Peace is not only a political system that works for the common good.
“Peace is possible only when with right relationships. When we achieve right relationships, there will no longer be marginalized people, for all people will be treated as equals. There will no longer be divisions as people collaborate to work for the wellbeing of all. We will see ourselves as we are, members of the Earth community that respect all other members of the Earth community.”
“The Drums of Native Sisters” from Ligonier Valley led 2 ritual drum songs for the crowd while everyone joined in the rhythmic chants. Running Bear Medicine Man led the Peace Pipe ritual and offered thanksgiving to the four directions with sage smuging. Closing the rededication, sisters and visitors sang “Let There Be Peace on Earth” centering their hearts on the peace God will provide.