Civil Discourse for the Common Good
In his address to the U.S Congress, September 21, 2015, Pope Francis states, "You are called to defend and preserve the dignity of your fellow citizens by the tireless and demanding pursuit of the common good, for this is the chief aim of all politics."
As members of Benet Hill Monastery, we the Benedictine Sisters of Colorado Springs, feel compelled to remind ourselves of these words, and ask all of our citizens of this great country to demand of our leaders the pursuit of the common good. We are witnessing a world and our homeland marked by hatred, brutality, and violent conflict. We see within our society disparities in economic, political and social power. We have a political system paralyzed by extreme ideology and partisan politics. We cannot remain silent while both sides of a political divide threaten to tear apart the very fabric of this great nation. It is time to say, "Enough!"
We join our voices with thousands of women religious throughout the United States , we call for civility in our discourse and decency in our political interaction. We seek dialogue that reflects the principles and values upon which this nation was founded. May each of us strive to promote the common good and engage in constructive dialogue that seeks a way "together" in finding constructive solutions. We can ask no less of ourselves, of one another, and especially of our political leaders.
Let us engage in careful listening and honest questioning. Let us honor the dignity of those with whom we disagree and treat one another with respect when we cannot agree. It is their right and ours. Let us remember the well-known phrase in the United States Declaration of Independence: “ Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”. This phrase gives three examples of the inalienable rights given to all human beings by their Creator, and for which governments are created to protect. May our hearts be transformed to embrace these values.
The Sisters of Benet Hill Monastery
Sister Clare Carr OSB, Prioress