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ICC Calls for Diplomatic and Political Solutions
Dominicans Mark Start to Fifth Year of War

Great Bend sisters

Sisters from Great Bend signed and sent post cards to Condoleezza Rice and Ellen Sauerbrey, plus our Congressmen: US Rep. Jerry Moran, US Sen. Pat Roberts and US Sen. Sam Brownback. They also signed letters of support for the Dominican Sisters of St. Catherine, Dominican Sister of the Presentations, and Province of Dominican men in Iraq.

Great Bend postcards
photos: Rebecca Peak

RIVER FOREST, IL - March 19, 2007---With growing public calls for a withdrawal of military troops, US citizens marked the end of four years of war in Iraq. Dominicans around the US stood in prayer, held vigils, wrote letters and joined the growing clamor for peace.

At the same time, the North American Dominican Coordinating Committee on Iraq has called for a new direction of diplomatic and political will to bring peace to the region. In making their statement, the committee said, " It is more than evident that military strategies and continued escalation will not bring peace to the region.  We continue to call for a responsible withdrawal of military troops, but we believe that withdrawal alone will not adequately assure peace in Iraq." Read their Statement

Dominicans in Springfield IL, offered a photo exhibit of images from Baghdad and held a vigil outside the offices of Senators Dick Durbin and Barak Obama, and Congressmen John Shimkus and Ray LaHood. The vigil was kept by volunteers March 16-19. It was meant to remind the elected officials that a majority of Springfield residents voted during the general election for a resolution that calls for a withdrawal of troops from Iraq.

In San Rafael, CA, just like many other congregations, sisters held prayer vigils and gathered around a peace pole to pray and join others in their effort to remember the dead. They rang a peace bell 48 times in hono of the 48 months of war

St. Louis, MO, tombstones represent the dead during a 24-hour vigi (photo: Ann Marie Santen, OP)

In Blauvelt, NY, people placed candles in the their windows as a sign of peace. At the United Nation's Church Center, in New York, a prayer service was held remembering all the victims, Iraqis, US and other armed troops, Iraqi Dominicans. In St. Louis, MO, a vigil was held with a display of tombstones representing the dead.

Dominicans at Purdue University, students and residential parishioners attended the Washington Peace Vigil at the National Cathedral on the 16th and the March on the Pentagon on March17.  For those who could not attend, there was a Peace vigil at Purdue on the 17th, where they named the  Purdue students serving in Iraq, prayed for the dead from both sides, and held a candlelight procession.

The war still kills, people still bury their dead.

Many groups used the Lenten prayers for peace in common to hold the people of Iraq and military forces in prayer.

“If They Had Faces: Journeys Through Iraq 2001-2004” will run from noon on Friday March 16 through noon on Sunday, March 25, at the Hoogland Center for the Arts, 420 S. Sixth St. It features the photos of Sister Beth Murphy, OP, who traveled to Iraq three times between 2001-2004.

About 100 letters have been prepared by Dominicans in the US to friars, laity and sisters in Iraq in support. More letters are coming and they will be sent to Iraq through the DLC NGO Office in New York.


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