EDITORIAL | Breaking barriers

At a general audience last year, Pope Francis said that brotherly love doesn't reign in the world. Our communities, neighborhoods, workplaces and homes often are fueled by jealousy, envy and anger.

"We must ask the Lord to help us understand his law of love," he said. "How good, how beautiful it would be if we loved one another as real brothers and sisters?"

Creating love from stones: Lessening tension of police-involved shootings in Shaw neighborhood and Ferguson

Lisa Johnston | lisajohnston@archstl.org | Twitter: @aeternusphoto Terri Merideth, a 30 year music teacher at St. Margaret of Scotland School and Parish, found a unique way to contribute to peace in the Shaw neighborhood after the recent unrest following the shooting of a teenager, Vonderrit Myers Jr., by an off duty police officer. She helped Mary Samuelson, the owner of Mama Josephine’s southern style home cooking restraunt on Castleman Avenue prepare a pot of stone soup. Samuelson had about 20 other volunteers from the Shaw neighborhood to make the soup which they delivered to the family of the man who was shot.

In the old folk story of Stone Soup, a group of travelers stop at a village with an empty cooking pot. The villagers initially are unwilling to share any of their food with the hungry travelers, so the travelers go to a stream and fill the pot with water, adding a large stone to it. One by one, the curious villagers stop by to see what they're doing. They each offer a different ingredient, until a delicious pot of hearty soup is produced. It's a lesson in cooperation and the power of a community that comes together.

Sister Antona Ebo encourages 'looking under the rug' in Ferguson

Sister Antona Ebo visited with Captain Ron Johnson of the Missouri Highway Patrol on her visit to Ferguson in August.

Sister Antona Ebo, FSM, lives in a senior retirement apartment about eight miles from the unrest in Ferguson, but time and distance disappear when she correlates it to the civil rights movement and her part of a march in Selma, Ala., on March 10, 1965.

Life Teen's planting called a confirmation of God's plan

With the XLT event on Oct. 9 serving as the informal kickoff for Blessed Teresa of Calcutta Parish's new Life Teen Mission, you might surmise that the group formed because of the Michael Brown shooting death in Ferguson.

But, if you did so, you'd be wrong.

BTC's Life Teen Mission was in the works before the tragedy of Aug. 9. Lead Life Teen missionary Stacy Cretors started laying the groundwork three months prior, arriving at Blessed Teresa in early May. Four other missionaries arrived as scheduled Sept. 1.

Food for Ferguson

Rick Allen, a volunteer with the I Love Ferguson committee, helped carry donations to the food drive sponsored by the group and Operation Food Search Sept. 20 at the Ferguson Community Center. The group was organized in the aftermath of the shooting of Ferguson resident Michael Brown.

As a volunteer for more than 20 years with the St. Vincent de Paul food pantry at Blessed Teresa of Calcutta Parish in Ferguson, Joan DeWitt knows the kind of need that exists in her community.

Since the fatal shooting of Michael Brown in August, that need has increased, she said. So DeWitt and a group of Ferguson residents came together last weekend to help their fellow community members.

Transformation happening at St. Charles Lwanga Center

Daija Loggins credits her future to her association with the St. Charles Lwanga center where she began to learn about herself as a black Catholic. Her journey through the Kujenga (meaning “build” in Swahili) program provided leadership development which she, now as a young adult, is helping to pass along as a mentor in the program. Loggins is studying early elementary education at Missouri Baptist University and studied on the campus in St. Louis.

In the 1990's sitcom Seinfeld, Elaine warns an employee that her friend George is a "bad seed."

"A horrible seed," she says. "One of the worst seeds I've ever seen."

Ultimately, she takes it back, describing him as a "fine seed."

Father Art Cavitt might use that term to describe Daniel Crawford, a 21-year-old from Florissant who has transformed himself into a good seed at St. Charles Lwanga Center.

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