A Message from Sr. Terry about COVID-19

Posted by RENEW International on Mar 17, 2020 6:00:00 AM

Updated April 2, 2020

Dear Friends of RENEW,

These are trying times, to be sure. Coronavirus has affected our lives, personally and globally, in unprecedented ways that require difficult, practical acts of compassion and generosity by all. The RENEW team and I offer our prayers and support during these unsettling days. The challenges and complexities of this virus and all its ramifications for our health, on our emotional, and spiritual wellbeing and on our financial security can be overwhelming. Yet, we are people of hope, grounded in the faith that God is always with us. We also have each other, and we need to help each other through this time. We may be practicing social distancing, but our hearts and spirits need to be in solidarity and communion.

Please take deep breaths, pray, talk with friends and family often, reach out to members of your small group and to other parishioners, and do acts of kindness that have the power to save lives.

Last week a friend was getting out of her car in the parking lot of the local supermarket. An elderly couple called to her from their car window. They asked her if she would take their $40 and their shopping list and pick up some groceries. They were terrified to enter the crowded store and possibly catch the virus. My friend reassured them and gladly picked up their items. All over the world people are helping their neighbors in new ways amid this pandemic. This is an opportunity to be our best selves for God and for our neighbor.

Please join me daily in praying the RENEW Prayer Amid a Pandemic. In addition, please take advantage of the many resources RENEW is offering to help parishes, small groups, and individuals face this crisis with hope in our loving God. More information on these resources can be found below and on our EVENTS & WORKSHOPS page.

Peace,

—Sr. Terry Rickard, President and Executive Director of RENEW International

Free LIVE LENT! Scripture Resource 

The coronavirus pandemic is preventing public worship and in-person small-group faith-sharing. But the emergency does not mean we can’t continue our spiritual journey together during Lent and after. Beginning with the Fourth Sunday of Lent, RENEW is providing adapted free sessions from Live Lent! that you can use for personal reflection, for on-line small-group faith-sharing, or with those who share your home. 

 

NEW Online Faith-Sharing Series

The pandemic may keep us at a distance, but it need not keep us apart. RENEW International offers these faith-sharing sessions for your small groups to use via conference call, Zoom, or other new technology:

 

Walking the Way of the Cross

The pandemic is disrupting our daily routines, but it need not keep us from participating in the prayers and rituals of our faith. RENEW International offers Walking the Way of the Cross, a reflection on the Passion of the Lord for individuals or small groups to use during Lent and beyond.

 

RENEW Prayer Amid a Pandemic*

Lord Jesus Christ, we pray for your healing touch during this pandemic. We ask you to accompany those in our small groups,
our parishes, our communities, our nation, 
and throughout the world who are impacted 
by the virus through infection, economic loss,
or anxiety.

Renew our faith in your promise to be with us always.
Keep us mindful, Lord, that we share in this crisis as a family and that whatever we are asked to do to prevent the spread of infection, we do for the good of all.

May we be patient and generous with each other, following your example, you who live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.

Copyright © 2020, RENEW International. All rights reserved. This text may be reproduced in whole or in part without alteration for nonprofit educational use, provided such reprints are not sold and include this notice.

*Click title to download prayer.

Oración en el tiempo del coronavirus – RENEW*

Señor, Jesucristo, te pedimos impongas tus manos sanadoras sobre este virus. Te pedimos que acompañes a las pequeñas comunidades de fe, nuestras parroquias, comunidades, nación y a todos los que han sido afectados por este virus en el mundo, ya sea por infección, pérdida económica, o ansiedad. 

Renueva nuestra fe en tu promesa de estar siempre con nosotros. Recuérdanos, Señor, que estamos juntos en esta crisis como familia y que todo lo que se nos pide para prevenir la diseminación de la infección, lo hacemos por el bien de todos.

Siguiendo tu ejemplo, que seamos pacientes y generosos el uno con el otro, Tú que vives y reinas con el Padre y con el Espíritu Santo, por los siglos de los siglos. Amen.

Copyright © 2020, RENEW International. All rights reserved. This text may be reproduced in whole or in part without alteration for nonprofit educational use, provided such reprints are not sold and include this notice.

*Haga clic en el título para descargar la oración.

 

Webinars to Help Parishes through the Pandemic

Visit our EVENTS & WORKSHOPS page to learn about our free webinars in English and Spanish to help parishes, small groups, and individuals at this difficult time. On this page, you will also find information on online faith-sharing opportunities.

If you missed one of our webinars or just want to watch again, check back here after the webinars have taken place. We will continue to add links so you can stream the videos at your convenience:

Till We Meet Again Series

 

NCR Online Cites RENEW as a Leading Promoter of Small Groups

In a recent article in National Catholic Reporter Online, NCR news editor Peter Feuerherd names RENEW's contribution to small-group faith communities for both Latino and non-Latino Catholics. Feuerherd predicts that the small-group model of "human connection with faith life" will help fill a need for US Catholics during the pandemic.  Given that gathering even in small groups poses risk at this time, RENEW is offering online options for faith-sharing and other opportunities. Please check our EVENTS & WORKSHOPS page for the latest offerings.

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Topics: Announcements

Film Highlights Sister Helen Prejean's Work Against Death Penalty

Posted by RENEW International on Mar 10, 2020 12:07:29 PM

A recent documentary features Sister Helen Prejean (Dead Man Walking), whose insights are the subject of RENEW International’s upcoming book Dignity and the Death Penalty: Evolution of Catholic Teaching. The film, titled SISTER, follows Sister Helen as she works on behalf of Oklahoma death row inmate Richard Glossip. The documentary, directed and filmed by Joe Cardona and José L. Vázquez, also explores the evolving ministry of Catholic women religious in America. WPBT PBS South Florida co-produced the film.

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RENEW's Healing Our Church Well Received by Newark Parishes

Posted by RENEW International on Mar 10, 2020 10:39:52 AM


The Catholic Advocate, the newspaper of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Newark, NJ, has published an article on RENEW International’s Healing Our Church/Sanando Nuestra Iglesia. Healing Our Church is a small-group program that helps Catholics confront the twofold crises of sexual abuse by clergy and cover-up by Church leaders and envision a way forward for the Church. The program is available in both English and Spanish.

 The Advocate article cites positive feedback from several archdiocesan parishes that have participated in Healing Our Church.  The program is part of Forward in Faith Together: Our Road Ahead, the pastoral vision of Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R., archbishop of Newark. It is intended for the lay faithful throughout the Church, to help them begin the healing process and move forward, with the clergy, as a family of faith.

The article appears in the March 11, 2020 issue of the Catholic Advocate and can be accessed here.

For more information about Healing Our Church, visit https://healingourchurch.org/en/.

 

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RENEW INTERNATIONAL ANNOUNCES 21st ANNUAL DINNER GALA HONOREES

Posted by RENEW International on Mar 3, 2020 9:20:32 AM

 

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RENEW International Announces 40th Anniversary Capital Campaign: Forward at 40 at Mass of Thanksgiving

Posted by RENEW International on Nov 15, 2018 10:14:00 AM
RENEW International Announces
40
th  Anniversary Capital Campaign:  Forward at 40
at Mass of Thanksgiving
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Live Lent! cover photo hit the spot for this engineer

Posted by RENEW International on Aug 20, 2018 11:01:00 AM

I admit, I was hesitant to commit to a small group despite the friendly encouragement. I had some of the typical excuses–namely logistics and uncertainty of what I would be getting myself into.

However, I had a non-typical way of overcoming those excuses. I stopped in my tracks passing the sign-up table when I saw the cover of Live Lent! (Year A) because it was “a sign from God,” or, as it popped into my head at the time, “a pavement marking from God!”

Right after signing up, I texted a photo of the cover to my fellow Catholic traffic engineer friends with that caption. We are all fond of road signs, traffic lights, and pavement markings–the technical term for the lines painted on roads, including crosswalks like the one on the cover.

I am so thankful that the connection with the cover inspired me to put aside my excuses. I enjoyed the beautiful reflections of the book with my group. I have grown so much through the small groups, both in my faith and in my connection to the parish!

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Symposium on Parish Renewal Energizes Parish Leaders

Posted by RENEW International on May 7, 2018 11:09:00 AM

South Orange, NJ—Diocesan and parish leaders from the greater New York metro area gathered at Seton Hall University for the Monsignors Thomas Kleissler and Thomas Ivory Symposium on Parish Renewal. The event was hosted by RENEW International in partnership with The Center for Catholic Studies at Seton Hall and America Media. Over two hundred clergy and lay men and women listened to insights from Catholic thought leaders and engage in dialogue on topics vital to today’s Church.

The keynote speaker was William Simon, chairman of Parish Catalyst and author of Great Catholic Parishes. Simon addressed the four foundational practices he found in successful parishes. In his research, he found that great parishes share leadership; foster spiritual maturity and plan for discipleship; excel on Sunday; and evangelize.

The keynote was followed by four panelists, each an expert in one of the four foundational practices. Father Matt Malone, SJ of America Media acted as moderator. The four panelists—Chris Lowney, author of Everyone Leads; Sister Terry Rickard, OP, president of RENEW; Father Bismarck Chau, pastor of St. Patrick’s Pro-Cathedral in Newark, NJ; and Leisa Anslinger, director of Catholic Life and Faith—each spoke briefly before symposium attendees submitted questions.

A lively conversation ensued as panelists answered questions and explored new topics raised in participant table discussions. Following the panel discussion, a final table session produced a collection of takeaways for the participants which were shared with the room.

Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, archbishop of Newark, joined participants and panelists for evening prayer, sharing reflections about RENEW and the vision of its founders, Monsignors Kleissler and Ivory, who were present. “As a young priest in Detroit, I knew two things about Newark,” the cardinal said. “I knew it was in New Jersey, and I knew it had a wonderful program called RENEW.”

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RENEW notes 40th anniversary at Mid-Atlantic Congress

Posted by RENEW International on Mar 12, 2018 8:30:00 AM


RENEW continued its 40th-anniversary celebrations in February at the Mid-Atlantic Congress in Baltimore, Maryland. The congress opened with a Mass, celebrated by Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manilla; immediately following the liturgy, everyone was invited to join us in the main exhibit space for a special RENEW celebration.

Sister Terry Rickard, OP, president and executive director of RENEW, addressed the crowd during a Facebook Live session and heard from many who participated in RENEW throughout the years. Attendees shared anniversary cake and light refreshments along with stories of their RENEW experiences. RENEW alumni wore with pride special green ribbons on their name badges.

Each year, RENEW offers attendees the chance to walk away with a sample set of our resources.

Ms. Adriana Visoso-Valverde was happy to have been selected as the 2018 MAC Raffle winner. She will be receiving a RENEW tote bag with a wide selection of Spanish-language RENEW Spanish resources.

Adriana is the associate director of formation programs for Instituto Fe y Vida which provides leadership training empowering Latino youth in churches and society nationally. She has been working with Fe y Vida for 19 years, recommending Spanish resources for groups all over the United States. Adriana attends St. Camillus

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Woodstock Business Conference joins RENEW International Becomes Ignatian Business Chapters

Posted by RENEW International on Feb 5, 2018 8:30:00 AM


RENEW International announces a new partnership with the former Woodstock Business Conference to promote moral leadership among Catholics at work, at home and in the community. As part of RENEW International, the newly renamed Ignatian Business Chapters (IBC) will expand into parishes around the country.

For 25 years, the Woodstock Business Conference operated under the sponsorship of the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University, forming university-based groups with Catholic business professionals to dialogue about moral issues in business. With the closing of the Center, a new identity was sought. As part of RENEW International, Ignatian Business Chapters will continue that work, expanding outreach and capitalizing on RENEW’s 40 years of experience establishing parish-based small groups. "IBC has found not only a new home but a new future as well with this partnership with RENEW," says John Fontana, Director of Ignatian Business Chapters.

Chapters will also benefit from RENEW International’s experience creating highly effective materials for small groups. The Dynamic Leader: Balancing Faith and Work is a new resource from RENEW, based on the work of Chris Lowney, renowned author on Catholic leadership. The resource was created to support the work of the Chapters and combines the Ignatian spirituality of the Jesuits with Lowney’s modern leadership insights to prompt meaningful thought and conversation, and provides an ideal launching pad for new groups.

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RENEW INTERNATIONAL HONORS FOUR CHAMPIONS FOR EVANGELIZATION 40th Anniversary celebrations begin

Posted by RENEW International on Nov 1, 2017 8:30:00 AM


RENEW International, a Catholic not-for-profit organization based in Plainfield, N.J., will begin celebrating its 40th anniversary by honoring four bishops who have demonstrated their dedication to evangelization. The Champions for Evangelization award will be presented during a reception at the United State Conference of Catholic Bishops Fall General Assembly in November to Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley. OFM, Cap, archbishop of Boston; Most Rev. Nicholas DiMarzio, bishop of Brooklyn; Most Rev. Michael Pfeifer, OMI, bishop emeritus of San Angelo; and Most Rev. Michael Sis, bishop of San Angelo.

Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio to the United States, will offer an invocation before Joseph Cardinal Tobin, archbishop of Newark—RENEW’s home diocese—addresses the guests regarding his own experiences with a RENEW process when he was a pastor. Sister Terry Rickard, OP, president and executive director of RENEW, will present the awards to the four prelates who have partnered with RENEW in the work of evangelization, sponsoring RENEW small-group evangelization processes to deepen faith.

Cardinal O’Malley established the decade-long relationship between the Archdiocese of Boston and RENEW International. Boston was the first dioceses to participate in ARISE Together in Christ/LEVÁNTATE. Unámonos en Cristo. The partnership was so successful that, once it completed the process, the diocese immediately moved on to a deeper exploration of faith in Why Catholic? Many of the small groups established through these efforts are continuing with other RENEW resources. Throughout the years, RENEW was aided by Mary Ann McLaughlin and Ann Cussen from the archdiocesan Office of Spiritual Life who attended all of the hundreds of workshops held in the archdiocese throughout the years.

Bishop DiMarzio, a native of RENEW’s home archdiocese of Newark, was instrumental in bringing ARISE/LEVÁNTATE into the ethnically diverse Diocese of Brooklyn. The diocese asked RENEW to provide workshops in three languages—English, Spanish, and Haitian-Creole. Small groups in the diocese are also working in Chinese, and Braille editions have been provided. Theodore Musco, the Secretary for Evangelization and Catechesis who works closely with RENEW in the diocese said, “Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio's energetic promotion and sincere support of RENEW'S ARISE/LEVÁNTATE small faith-sharing groups in Brooklyn and Queens has made all the difference in its success. The people of the diocese have been renewed and evangelized thanks to his stellar leadership.”

Bishop Pfeifer introduced small groups into the Diocese of San Angelo with RENEW for the 21st Century. After the success of that program, Why Catholic?/¿Por que ser catolico? brought a deeper understanding of the faith to parishioners throughout the diocese. They then moved forward with the ARISE/LEVÁNTATE process. After Bishop Pfeifer’s retirement, Bishop Sis, seeing the success of the programs, decided to make the diocese one of the first to adopt RENEW’s newest process, Be My Witness/Sean mis testigos., which was inspired by Pope Francis’ landmark document, The Joy of the Gospel. Both bishops give credit for the success of the programs to Sister Hilda Marotta and Sister Adelina Garcia who head the Office of Evangelization and Catechesis. Bishop Sis commented, “While I do not consider myself to merit such a claim, I will be happy to receive the award on behalf of our diocese, along with Bishop Michael Pfeifer. In reality, the ones who deserve to be considered as RENEW Champions for Evangelization in our diocese would be Sister Hilda Marotta and Sister Adelina Garcia.”

The reception at the bishops’ assembly will be the first in a series of events celebrating RENEW International’s 40th anniversary of fostering renewal within the Catholic Church world-wide. On April 19, 2018, in partnership with the Center for Catholic Studies at Seton Hall University and America Media, RENEW will host the Monsignors Thomas Kleissler and Thomas Ivory Symposium on Parish Renewal at Seton Hall in South Orange, N.J. The event is named after the co-founders of RENEW. Father Matthew Malone, SJ of America Media will moderate the symposium which will feature William Simon of Parish Catalyst as the main speaker. Panelists will include best-selling author Chris Lowney; Leisa Anslinger of Catholic Life and Faith; Father Bismarck Chau, pastor of St. Patrick’s Pro-Cathedral in Newark; and Sister Terry Rickard of RENEW.

RENEW International will continue the celebrations with its 40th Anniversary Gala on June 7, 2018 at which several key figures in the founding of RENEW will be honored. In September, a group of RENEW supporters will make a pilgrimage to the spiritual capitals of Italy guided by Sister Terry and Father Anthony Randazzo of The Church of the Holy Trinity in Westfield, N.J. The year will end with a celebration of a Mass of Thanksgiving followed by a reception on November 4 at Our Lady of Mercy Church in Park Ridge, N.J., the first parish assignment for RENEW co-founder Father Tom Kleissler.

To learn more about RENEW’s 40th anniversary celebrations visit www.renewintl.org/celebrate40.

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