20th of January in the Year of Our Lord 2022
Dear Friends and Family
President Joseph Robinette Biden this past January 14th, 2022, issued aÂ Proclamation on Religious Freedom Day stating, “In my life, faith has always been a beacon of hope and aÂ calling to purpose, as it is for so many Americans, and I believe that protecting religious freedom is as important now as it has ever been. We must continue our work to ensure that people of all faiths or none are treated as full participants in society, equal in rights and dignity. We can only fully realize the freedom we wish for ourselves by helping to ensure liberty for all.
On Religious Freedom Day, let us rededicate ourselves to these fundamental principles”.
This proclamation holds deep spiritual meaning to me, for as you may or may not know, I have been vigiling at St. Joseph’s on the Brandywine in Wilmington, Delaware, for just little over two months praying to God and petitioning whomever else has an ear that those who operate under the mistaken guise that they are pro-life and indeed anti-life in their position on restricting a woman’s access to reconsider their stance and request that they conduct thorough research on the complete history of a View from the Vatican and its’ checkered position over the last few centuries as to when life begins and how this reflects women’s reproductive healthcare and has lead to a large number of women dying unnecessarily leaving orphaned children and spouseless mates in the wake.
I have also been vigiling praying that President Biden too, reflect: on his oath of office to represent all Americans equally; and to defend the constitution from the constitutional crisis which looms ahead; and exercise his authority and all options under his dominion to remove all barriers on the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA). In particular, the Biden/Harris Administration engage the US Senate and instruct them to hold a hearing (on SJ Res. 1) and vote “Yea!” on the ERA, as well as instruct the AG Garland and LOC Schroeder to re-examine the Barr Opine and issue a newly updated opine which includes all the facts in particular how Congress acting under Article V is obliged under their colour of authority and colour of law to retroactively remove the deadline imposed back in the 1970s; as well as instruct the archivist to publish Virginia’s ratification, and issue a proclamation that enshrines the ERA into the US Constitution.
Although it is colder than ‘a witches teet’ and I often find myself muttering aloud as I lose feeling in my digits, (yes my toes have turned into ice cubes) in the well below freezing rain and wonderous snow flurries, these vigils are also spiritually refreshing. I have come to witness the many faithful parishioners at St. Joseph’s as they come to worship. They are a good group truly. I have also come to meet many of the locals at coffee shops, convenience stores, and gas stations. They reflect on their lives in Wilmington a bit differently than the privileged folks in the area. Wilmington is a historic city with many immigrant villages dating well before Delaware became the first state. It is an area blighted by extreme poverty. I have spoken to many homeless in the vicinity as well as providers over the past several weeks. The problems in Wilmington are the same most everywhere across the USA and it is the glaring problem of racism and sexism.
Recently I met a homeless black woman, she was changing out of her sopping wet clothes, I felt called to buy her a cup of coffee. She refused, stating there would be nowhere to relieve herself later in the day if she partook now. She went on to explain to me that she had problems at the local shelter where she was being harassed and with no options available was now out in the pouring freezing rain. My heart broke in two, I have heard this story from many other women of colour, especially on my pilgrimage across the USA for the ERA back in 2014-2015. Not much has changed, so many homeless, on the streets of one of the most developed and wealthiest of countries on the planet. A true reflection on the soul of America.
So I ask for your continued prayers and support in the coming months ahead. And I hope I can count on you to stand with us on the front lines of democracy advocating for Equality for All by supporting our ministries with gift today.
MORE IMPORTANTLY, I ask that you take a moment to …
- First and foremost go to our Power of Ten webpage and call Senator Dick Durbin at (202) 224-3121 or (202) 224-7703, ask him to hold hearings, and to co-sponsor S.J. Res. 1. And Be sure to also call Senator Ben Cardinat (202) 224-4524 and Senator Lisa MurkowskiÂ at (202) 224-6665 asking them to follow the Genesis Approach of ‘going forth and multiple’ in bringing on co-sponsors for S.J. Res. 1, in which they are the lead sponsors and securing votes when it comes to the floor. Tell them that “It is time to Pass the Equal Rights Amendment!”
- In conjunction with asking your senators to co-sponsor and vote a resounding “Yea!” on S.J. Res. 1, ask your senators to reach out to President Biden in writing and through their political channels and ask him to take all appropriate actions to ensure the publication of Virginia’s ratification (the 38th state to ratify) and the immediate publication of the Equal Rights Amendment. Join the multitudes that are writing letters faxing and mailing them off urging the US Senate Chamber to vote “yea!” on SJ Res 1 – which will retroactively remove the deadline on the ERA. Others are petitioning Senators to contact the Biden/Harris Administration to step up. These critically important next steps are essential in making the arguments that could be presented as moot points when the US Supreme Court eventually decides to hear issues regarding the ERA, its validity and the process by which it has been adopted will be reviewed. Please go to these two groups for more details. They are Equal Means Equal and Rethinking Eve who have crafted several different letters for yourÂ consideration.
- Then go over to the White House contact page and call the White House Switchboard at (202) 456-1414 and ask the President of the United States of America Joseph R. Biden to exercise all powers under his authority such as a PROCLAMATION to ensure the enshrinement of the Equal Rights Amendment into the Constitution of the U.S.A.
Then as mentioned earlier your generous support in the days ahead will have a direct impact on our ability to:
- Keep Advocating for those who have no rights, and are not amongst the privileged; and
- Keep Educating folks on the varied issues that the ERA will address, specifically racism and sexism; and
- Keep Fighting those who would set democracy back another 150 years; and
- Keep Promoting the passage of the ERA;
- Keep Vigiling for the ERA at the faith-based congregations of President Biden and Senator Cardin
Katrina’s Dream along with many groups and advocates that we work alongside have helped in promoting and educating many on the varied issues that the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) will address when enshrined in the US Constitution.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read this eBlast looking forward to your email responses.
This week’s music selection – Chant of the Mystics Gregorian Chant “Salve Regina” Arrangement and Vocals by Patrick Lenk – The “Salve Regina”, also known as the “Hail Holy Queen”, is a Marian hymn and one of four Marian antiphons sung at different seasons within the Christian liturgical calendar of the Catholic Church. The Salve Regina is traditionally sung at Compline (the final prayer of the day). The Hail Holy Queen is also the final prayer of the Rosary. Mystically speaking it is a song to the spiritual force of Purity, which was lost through the sin of man and gives birth to the process of Deification and reintegration with God. In the Christian tradition, it is personalized as Mary the Virgin and Mother of God. This melody is used by Cistercian Monasteries. who traditionally are greatly connected to Mary in their spirituality. Each monastery is devoted to her, and it’s said that it was one of their most prominent Monks, Bernhard of Clairvaux, who added the final line to the Salve Regina, while being in mystical ecstasy.
God Bless Always… Everyone, Everything, Everywhere!
Under the Mercy,
Helene de Boissiere – Swanson, Katrina’s Dream
What are kingdoms without justice? – St. Augustine of Hippo, City of God
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This Friday’s Agenda
12:00 pm Welcome and Meditation-
“I am not an advocate for frequent changes in laws and constitutions,
but laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind.
As that becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made,
new truths discovered and manners and opinions change,
with the change of circumstances, institutions must advance also to keep pace with the times.
We might as well require a man to wear still the coat which fitted him when a boy
as civilized society to remain ever under the regimen of their barbarous ancestors.”
–Thomas Jefferson Panel Four Jefferson Memorial
12:05 pm Introductions – Those who wish, introduce themselves giving one or two words on your state of mind.(examples: invigorated, focused, determined, empowered.)
12:10 pm Reports and Announcements
REthinking Eve gives a report on Request to Senators re: Biden and Publication of Virginia’s Ratification
Equal Means Equal update on ministry with Dr. Kurtis Blow
ERA Action updates on advocacy actions
LWV of Chillicothe/Ross County report
Other individuals/networks announcements
12:20 pm Organizing Discussion
Preparing for the upcoming United Nations Commission on the Status of Women.
Parallel Event –
Bishop Trevor Mwamba
Senator Patricia Spearman
Helene de Boissiere – Swanson
Two more slots to fill – Suggestions
Handbook Ad – Graphics to be used
Exhibitor’s Booth – Identifying Groups to showcase.
Equal Means Equal
LWV of Chillicothe/Ross County
12:55 pm Wrap up
1:00 pm The Conversation continues building friendships, support wanderings, sharing wisdom and frustrations, and celebrating successes.