September 27, 2016, Detroit, Michigan – The words “May Peace Prevail on Earth” now greet visitors to Hope House, a facility of Voices for Earth Justice (VEJ) in Detroit. Those words are inscribed on a Peace Pole installed at VEJ and dedicated on September 18.
The event – held a few days before International Day of Peace on September 21 – also honored Sister Janet Stankowski, OP, during her 50-year Jubilee Year as an Adrian Dominican Sister. The Peace Pole was purchased by Sister Janet’s family and friends in her honor.
Sister Janet co-founded VEJ with Patricia Gillis, an Adrian Dominican Associate, in 2001 out of a need to bring a faith-based perspective to environmental issues. Sister Janet describes the non-profit organization as a “faith-based network whose mission is to pray, educate, and act on behalf of Earth.”
During the dedication ceremony, Rabbi Syme, Imam Muhammad, and Father Phil Paxton, CP, shared thoughts about peace from their respective traditions. Participants recited the Prayer of St. Francis and were blessed by Doris Thunderfeather Allen in a sage blessing ceremony.
Along with Sister Janet, Adrian Dominican Sisters in attendance included Sisters Jeanine Boivin, OP; Pat Benson, OP; Grace Dennis, OP; Annette Desloover, OP; Arlene Kosmatka, OP; Sheila Delaney, OP; Cheryl Liske, OP; and Anneliese Sinnott, OP. Adrian Dominican Associates who attended included Carol Hofer, Patty Gillis, Geri Pleva, Mercedes Fitzsimmons, and Joyce Fruge.
The prayer, “May peace prevail on Earth,” was written in 1955 by the late Msahisa Goi, a Japanese man who sought to spread the desire for peace in people throughout the world. The prayer is written in English and other languages on the four or six sides of the peace pole. Numbering in the tens of thousands, peace poles can be found in 180 countries and on all continents.
Watch a slide show of the Voices for Earth Justice peace pole dedication.
January 13, 2016, Detroit – Have you made a New Year’s resolution to become more aware of and more involved in the urgent environmental issues of our day? If so, Voices for Earth Justice has some special opportunities for you.
An interfaith network of people focused on spirituality and care for the Earth, Voices is offering a series of presentations on Laudato Si’, Pope Francis’ recent encyclical on environmental issues such as global climate change. Led by Adrian Dominican Sister Patricia Benson, the sessions will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturdays, January 16 and 23, at St. Basil Church, 22851 Lexington Avenue, Eastpointe.
The talks are free of charge, but donations will be accepted. To register or for more information, email Sister Pat.
Dr. Janet Stankowski, OP, Development Director of Voices, is also seeking people interested in volunteering to serve on the organization’s board of directors. For information or to volunteer, email Sister Janet.
Voices was founded in 2001 by Sister Janet and Adrian Dominican Associate Patricia Gillis out of a need to bring a faith-based perspective to environmental issues. Sister Janet described the non-profit organization as a “faith-based network whose mission is to pray, educate, and act on behalf of Earth.”
The presentations on Laudato Si’ begin a new year of activities for Voices for Earth Justice, which concluded 2015 with a flurry of events coordinated with other organizations in the Detroit area. To read about the events of last Fall and about Voice’s ongoing projects, read the January 2016 newsletter.
Feature photo: From left, Sisters Janet Stankowski, Janet Traut, Annette Desloover, and Virginia (Ginny) King pause in the task of raking leaves to pose with the Detroit Community Development Award.