Minutes for MPJC Meeting of October 16, 2017

Present: Peter, Ellyn, Glenda Rae, Rey, Lois, Wanda, Galen, Judy

Old business

    1.  Approval of Minutes for September 18: The minutes were approved as corrected.

    2. Progress Reports:

        a. Topic of the Month: Racial Justice. Peter has uploaded the current statement. He will send a link to the list. Lois was not happy with the rewording of the statement on racial justice since it does not pay attention to the souls of people. After much discussion, it was decided to keep the staement as written since it respected a multitude of positions. It was suggested that Lois reply to the group with her objections when Peter sends the minutes and a link to the statement in the hope that a dialog will be started. She believes that we are not human beings having spiritual experiences but spiritual beings having human experiences. There are deep divisions in this country. Trump exacerbates this division by saying whatever he wants.

       b. SURJ meeting report and Columbus Day vigil: There were 28 people at the indigenous people's day vigil, including a native american family with children. There was one counter protester holding Italian and Sicilian flags but he stayed down the street and no one talked to him. We credit the good attendance to the SURJ media person who pushed the event on facebook and other social media. She was interviewed at 5:30am that day by Channel 57. Kevin was there at the vigil. He has put up an MPJC facebook page. Peter should email him to post stuff when we have other events so he can put them out on social media.

        c. Book of the Month report: Wanda reported on a book about adoption - "Before we were yours" by Lisa Wingate. It was a fictional version of a true story about a family who were living happily on a houseboat in 1939 when the mother had to go to the hospital to give birth, leaving a 12 year old daughter in charge of the other children. While the parents were at the hospital, the police came and took the children and gave them to a Tennessee director, Georgia Tan, who mistreated the children and then adopted them out without informing the parents, even though the parents were told they would get them back. Years later a federal prosecutor heard about the story and discovered that his grandmother was one of the children. We discussed the parallel with the film shown at the CRHC about Indian children taken to boarding schools far away from home to prevent them from learning about their heritage and language, and also about the recent story of a Ugandan child adopted from an adoption agency who had stolen the child from her home. She was not an orphan at all. The adoptive parents took her back and reunited her with her family. Ellyn mentioned a movie, "Tge Innocents," about a convent of nuns in WWII who had been raped by Russians and a number became pregnant. The mother superior was killing the infants until a doctor pointed out that the convent could be turned into an orphanage for the many homeless children in the town to hide the fact that some of the children were born from the nuns. She also mentioned how impressed Thomas Jefferson was with the intelligence of Native Americans and Negroes.

       d. Immigration Coalition Report: Ellyn is forwarding the information from Joe Carbone to MPJC. The latest is a plan to hold a vigil at Rep. Walorski's office, time and date to be determined. There will be a program on immigration at St. Adalbert's church on Saturday, October 21st, 2:30-4pm.

        e. International Day of Prayer for Peace: Jan , Jane, and Tina organized a program at St James Cathedral, 117 N. Lafayette Blvd at noon on Thursday, September 21, proclaiming this Day of Prayer for Peace. The program was very moving with many faiths represented. It was sparsely attended, however. We dedicated the September 18 vigil to calling attention to this day.

3. Treasurer's Report: $158.72 with a $2.61 in petty cash.

New Business

    1. What do we (can we) do next? We incorporated this topic into other discussion

    2. Topic of the Month: Why we oppose nuclear weapons. See Scarred Lands film entry below

    3. MLK Day Table: No meeting yet

    4. Scarred Lands and Ruined Lives film: Glenda Rae received an email saying that this film about the environmental consequences of war would be free for organizations who showed it before Veterans Day. SURJ showed an interest in attending a showing. We charged Rey and Ellyn to find a day that the Humphreys room at the library would be available and arrange to get the film and discussion materials. After the meeting Rey secured the room from 5-8 on Wednesday, November 8. We need to spread the word. After watching the film, we plan to break up into small discussion groups.

    5. Human Rights Day: The program will be at the library auditorium on Saturday, December 9th, 1-2:30pm.

    6. Other Topics and Issues: There is an interfaith gathering at Temple Bethel on November 11. Why is aid so slow to arrive in the outlying areas of Puerto Rico. It could be the result of racism and anti-immigrant feeling. Certainly there are enough military helicopters to deliver the aid wherever it is needed.

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    7. Next meeting: Monday, November 20th, at 2:30pm at Lois' assisted living center. We will send the directions in the meeting announcement.