Archive | October, 2011

Songs of Social Justice

“It’s been a long time coming, but I know a change is gonna come.” Sam Cooke saw that change coming, and sang it, and wrote it down in indelible words for all of us to see. Nothing can ever erase his voice now. Nothing can stop that change from coming.

Read More Comments Off on Songs of Social Justice

Spare Change Leads to Spiritual Change

Surely, homeless people are entitled to our daily deeds of justice and compassion. Surely, they deserve to be treated with respect and kindness. When we respond to that holy call to kindness, we bring blessing into our lives and into the lives of all we touch.

Read More Comments Off on Spare Change Leads to Spiritual Change

San Francisco Protesters Show Solidarity with Occupy Wall Street

The 99 Percent came to San Francisco’s financial district to call a halt to bank theft and corporate corruption perpetrated by the One Percent – the big bankers hoarding our nation’s wealth and corporate CEOs receiving enormous bonuses while the poor, unemployed, and homeless suffer in the midst of affluence.

Read More Comments Off on San Francisco Protesters Show Solidarity with Occupy Wall Street

People of Faith Must Hear the Cry of the Poor

“Soup kitchens and hospitality, though wonderful, do not go far enough. There needs to be more advocacy which affects political and societal structures. We need a social movement which incorporates the most prophetic aspects of the Judeo/Christian tradition and other religious traditions to bring homelessness and poverty to an end.”

Read More Comments Off on People of Faith Must Hear the Cry of the Poor

Vigil on Golden Gate Bridge Condemns ‘Wars of Greed’

The marchers joined hands on the Golden Gate Bridge, their upraised arms connected by pink ribbons. They faced the ocean, and stood silently mourning victims of U.S. wars. Then each person in the human chain proclaimed, one after another: “These are not our wars. The people demand peace!”

Read More Comments Off on Vigil on Golden Gate Bridge Condemns ‘Wars of Greed’

Eureka Police Viciously Beat Homeless Man, Leave Him to Die in Jail

After the police beat an unarmed homeless man to death, a jury awarded $4,575,000 to his five-year-old daughter and father. Police officers kicked him, battered him with a baton and pepper-sprayed him. They kneed his organs and pounded his skull on the concrete, then refused to give him medical care.

Read More Comments Off on Eureka Police Viciously Beat Homeless Man, Leave Him to Die in Jail

Police Charged with Murdering Disabled Homeless Man in California

Six police officers beat the homeless man to death. He died from brain injuries and broken bones in his head and ribs, and was shocked repeatedly by police tasers on his head and face. As he died, he cried out in pain-filled pleas: “I’m sorry. I can’t breathe. Help, Dad!”

Read More Comments Off on Police Charged with Murdering Disabled Homeless Man in California

We Are the 99 Percent

The message of the demonstrators is populist and passionate: “We are getting kicked out of our homes. We are forced to choose between groceries and rent. We are denied quality medical care. We are getting nothing while the other 1 percent is getting everything. We are the 99 percent.”

Read More Comments Off on We Are the 99 Percent

Rising Hunger and Food Shortages in Desperate Times

Many service providers in Berkeley are reporting increasingly desperate levels of hunger and poverty. Survival for the growing numbers who are homeless or on the edge is very difficult. There is not enough of anything — food, housing, health care or safe places.

Read More Comments Off on Rising Hunger and Food Shortages in Desperate Times

A Life Consecrated to Compassion and Justice

On the bleak streets of the Tenderloin, a sister took a stand against inhumanity. Her solidarity was inspired by the beatitudes and consecrated to the poor.

The Invisible Natural Cathedral of People’s Park

Builders, please go away. Allow the beauty of an Invisible Natural Cathedral to remain, a living shrine of open space that gives refuge to all people.

Street Spirit Interview with Sister Bernie Galvin

This atrocity was happening in a very wealthy city. It was happening right under our noses. It was very visible. And there was not the united voice of the faith community speaking out. That was the spark of Religious Witness. From that moment, I knew what I had to do.

Interview with Sister Bernie Galvin, Part Two

“What’s forming in my mind is Jesus in the temple when he became angry at the unjust and very exclusive systems of society. That is the very reason that there are the poor and the marginalized. It is not enough just to provide food, clothing and housing.”

‘Such Is the Magic and Spirit of People’s Park’

The mayor has no understanding of the awful defeat the loss of People’s Park would be. No comprehension of the cost in lives and the sacrifices people have made for the Park’s ideals. So many still find it a refuge in a country needing a political and spiritual overhaul.

I Remember Who I Am

“And Now Where?” Lithograph by Rockwell Kent

By and by, I calm down. I meditate. I pray. It is a beautiful day. The sun is setting. I weave my way toward the spot where I sleep, where nobody knows where to find me. I look to the stars, and say my prayers to the God who believes in Me.