The Common Good

Blog Posts By Mary Nelson

Posted by Mary Nelson 1 year 5 weeks ago
“Sometimes I feel discouraged and think my work’s in vain, but then the Holy Spirit, revives my soul again.”So where does this revival come? Often when we looked at a dilapidated building in our community, the revival comes with the eyes to see the possibilities of rehabbing, of new uses. The revival comes in community, in coming together to take action. There is nothing like some music and food, too, to bind us together.
Posted by Mary Nelson 5 years 21 weeks ago
Posted by Mary Nelson 5 years 42 weeks ago
Posted by Mary Nelson 5 years 42 weeks ago
Posted by Mary Nelson 5 years 45 weeks ago
Posted by Mary Nelson 5 years 47 weeks ago
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 1 week ago
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 2 weeks ago
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 5 weeks ago
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 6 weeks ago
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 10 weeks ago
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 12 weeks ago
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 15 weeks ago
The heated abortion debate has up to this time been focused on legal measures. A new study commissioned by Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good concludes that government social spending and economic conditions do more to reduce abortions than legal strategies such as parental consent laws. Joseph Wright (Penn State University) and Michael Bailey's (Georgetown University) examined the dramatic drop in [...]
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 25 weeks ago
"Don't shoot -- I want to grow up," read the protest sign an 11-year-old boy held in the wake of 30-plus shootings of Chicago schoolchildren this school year. The Supreme Court's recent assertion of the individual's right to own a gun for self-defense stands in sharp contrast to the anguished pleas of the father of one of the schoolchildren to stop the tragic gun deaths in our community, and to get rid of the guns so available on our streets. His pleas reminded me of Jeremiah's [...]
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 33 weeks ago
Recently, both President Bush and an oil company spokesperson, speaking to the rising gas prices, pushed for building more refineries and upping the production of oil here in the States. No mention of exorbitant oil company profits. No mention of our need to drastically reduce use of cars and gasoline, to change lifestyles. No mention of the working poor who are stuck without public transportation to jobs remote from their inner-city or inner-ring suburban homes. Reducing dependence [...]
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 38 weeks ago
On Easter Sunday sermons about new life and transformation, resurrection and redemption abound. At our church we celebrated the baptism of a young man living in a half way house and doing work-release in our community. The genuine hugs and welcome from the mostly black congregation for this young white man were warm and genuine. One church member sponsors work release, another church member picks up the four to five who come for events and church, and this young man felt touched by God in [...]
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 40 weeks ago
In Ramah, a voice is heard, crying and weeping loudly. Rachel mourns for her children and refuses to be comforted, because they are dead. Jeremiah 31:15 Last week a spate of four deaths in our Chicago high schools was blamed on gangs and guns. Last year, the public high [...]
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 42 weeks ago
We are painfully reminded once again of the cascading violence in the U.S. after the senseless killing of six and wounding of many others at Northern Illinois University. But in my low-income Chicago community, the violence and killing have almost numbed us. I hear gunshots out my window regularly in the summer, and the annual homicide toll from guns in our two-square-mile community is often more than 30. The Children's Defense Fund indicates that almost 3,000 youth die in the U.S. annually [...]
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 45 weeks ago
There's something in the air: Super Tuesday. I haven't seen as much interest around a primary election in a long time. Despite the experiences of defeat around issues so important to my low-income community - the fear of recession, the dragged out Iraq war and the billions of dollars diverted for war that we need spent on improving the health and future of our youth - there is an tangible sense of hope and possibilities. As Caroline Kennedy told of her own experience, youth are speaking out [...]
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 47 weeks ago
Martin Luther King's sermon at Riverside Church linked the devastating Vietnam war to the struggle over poverty. I began working that year in an under-resourced community and wore a "Bread not Bombs" sweatshirt to anti-war demonstrations. Sadly, not much has changed. The amount spent on the Iraq war (CBO estimate $9 billion a month, up to $1 trillion total), if directed elsewhere, would virtually ensure [...]
Posted by Mary Nelson 6 years 50 weeks ago
I'm volunteering for a presidential candidate, mostly making phone calls to people in various states at volunteer headquarters. It is encouraging to work with people of all ages, walks of life, and races - people who, like me, were sideliners who are now enthusiastically involved with a sense of possibilities, believing that our efforts make a difference and things can change. My afternoon phone calls primarily reach elderly or others who are homebound. What a slice of the U.S.: "Organ" [...]
Posted by Mary Nelson 7 years 1 week ago
"We have the ability to solve this crisis and avoid the worst of its consequences, if we act boldly, decisively and quickly", said Al Gore in is Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech. He called on the U.S. and China, the worst polluters, to stop blaming others and take action "or stand accountable before history for their failure to act." God calls us to care for creation and the generations to come; we, too, will stand judged if we do not rouse from our doze and not only call for action on [...]
Posted by Mary Nelson 7 years 6 weeks ago
Economists are telling us that people are not spending enough money this Holiday time and thus our economy will suffer. I am reminded of the president's urging after 9/11, to go out and spend money, buy things as the way to make things better. I can't believe we fall for this false assumption of economic well-being: buying things, or things themselves, will bring happiness. A consultant in community building was invited by the South Korean government, saying, "We have money and [...]
Posted by Mary Nelson 7 years 6 weeks ago
Economists are telling us that people are not spending enough money this Holiday time and thus our economy will suffer. I am reminded of the president's urging after 9/11, to go out and spend money, buy things as the way to make things better. I can't believe we fall for this false assumption of economic well-being: buying things, or things themselves, will bring happiness. A consultant in community building was invited by the South Korean government, saying, "We have money and [...]
Posted by Mary Nelson 7 years 6 weeks ago
Economists are telling us that people are not spending enough money this Holiday time and thus our economy will suffer. I am reminded of the president's urging after 9/11, to go out and spend money, buy things as the way to make things better. I can't believe we fall for this false assumption of economic well-being: buying things, or things themselves, will bring happiness. A consultant in community building was invited by the South Korean government, saying, "We have money and [...]