Thursday, 15 November 2012 12:15

2012 Western Regional

Written by Sister Kathryn Shannon MM and Mary Ryan-Hotchkiss
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The Western Regional Conference was held in Las Vegas, Nevada, over Labor Day Weekend. Mary Ryan-Hotchkiss wrote:

Affiliates from 13 chapters gathered in arid Las Vegas, Nevada, for the Western Region Maryknoll Affiliate Conference to contemplate Water as Sanctifier and Quencher. Inside a sumptuous casino/resort we drank from metal water bottles bearing the Affiliate logo, while outdoor temperatures over the Labor Day Weekend soared to nearly 100 degrees. Indoors we heard the biblical treatment of water and of current water issues around the world. Sr. Rose Marie Cecchini M.M. told of the poisoning of aquifers by uranium mining on the Native People's lands near Gallup NM where she now works. A video,”Water For All” and our prayer and discussions motivated us to be better informed and to affirm the resolution that “Every Friday Maryknoll Affiliates will make special efforts to be aware of and to conserve water to be in solidarity with those suffering a lack of water.”

Check out some pictures on our Facebook page.

Sister Kathryn Shannon MM, who participates in the Greater LA Chapter, gave the the summary below.

[The 2012 Western Regional] was great! Punch and Lee (former L.A.ers) hit a home run. The conference took place in a 5 Star Marriott Hotel. The food and rooms were special. 42 Participants came from 10 States: Washington, Oregon, CA, Nevada, Montana, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Minn. & New York. Bob Short, the new Coordinator, spoke briefly. For him, the charism of the Maryknoll Affiliates answers this question, "Do we hear our "sister" crying?" Dr, Myrna Araneta facilitated the Conference. Friday night 1 person from each Chapter gave its report. Joe did us proud. WOW! Affiliates are doing a lot overseas and at home for MISSION.

Sat. A.M. Fr. Max Oliva S.J. gave us a rich scripturally loaded presentation on "Water As Sanctifier" followed by Q&A, Break and 5 Groups discussing challenging thought questions. Sat. P.M. we had a WILD "longest line" exercise with 4 groups competing for prizes. Then Sr. Rosemarie Cecinni M.M. spoke to "Water: Quencher- Managing clean water as a diminishing resource" Q&A, Break and more groups discussing challenging thought questions. Sat. Night a great social was facilitated by an original "Platter" who sang like the professional he is and got almost everyone up dancing. After he left Carmelita Atacador played the piano and Manny led us in a sing along.

Sun A.M. We had an EXCELLENT Video on Water exposing how groups like Coca Cola are pumping up scarce water in countries such as Bolivia where the poor now have to pay for their own water! Will the next war be over water? Will our faith make a difference for Peace, starting now? Fr. Max was the Celebrant at Mass. After a brief input he asked us to share our reflections. A gifted 5th grade Filipino girl sang "Panis Angelicus" and "Ave. Maria"" A collection of $326 was given to the Maryknoll Sisters celebrating 100 years of MISSION with the WORLD.

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