Rev. Olga Lucia Alvarez, Roman Catholic Woman Priest from South America Attends Annual ARCWP Meeting and Ordination
Roman Catholic woman priest Olga Lucia Alvarez traveled from Colombia,South America to join twenty eight other members of ARCWP for their Annual Meeting and the ordination of five women in Falls church ,Virginia. The women came from all over the United States. Michele Birch-Conery, another international member came from British Columbia, Canada. The meeting was led by Dorothy Shugrue, of Connecticut, the Circle Leader. After electing Board Officers and welcoming new Board members, the large group broke into small groups and considered a series of Scriptural and theological questions related to call and justice and peace,the charism of ARCWP. The reflection was deep and the participation was full and enthusiastic. Olga Lucia challenged us to share our ministry with the poor and the outcast. Her ministry in Bogota and the Good Shepherd ministry of Judy Beaumont and Judy Lee in Fort Myers, Florida are two examples of justice oriented ministry. Judy Lee and Olga Lucia talked about the place of doubt and anger in developing the kind of love and compassion needed in service with the poor, especially in affluent countries. Janice Sevre-Dusynska attended two protests against Drone warfare and for peace during her time in the D.C. area. Her activism is an example of ministry risked for peace.
While in the D.C. area, priests Olga Lucia, Judy Beaumont, Judy Lee and Dotty Shugrue visited the Martin Luther King, Jr. and Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorials. These were profound meditations on the power and wisdom of gifted leaders in the fight for economic, social and racial justice. Olga Lucia reflected on hatred and the violence in Colombia and the violence in America as she visited the King Memorial and the graves of John F. Kennedy and Robert Kennedy. We reflected on the difficulty of justice oriented ministries and the challenge of living Matthew 25:31-46 and Luke 4:16-20 ministries. Throughout our time together it was affirming to be with those who share the charism and the charge of enacting peace and justice as we seek to love our neighbors as ourselves.