The new website of St. Paul of the Cross province is full of good news. The website coincides with the announcement of a major project that presents a creative and exciting movement for the province and its retreat center in Jamaica, NY. On February 26th, ground was broken for Thomas Berry Place. As the Passionists celebrate our 300th Anniversary year, the province reimagined the former Bishop Molloy Retreat House into a new Passionist Center that fulfills their re-focused mission, creates new partnerships, and offers new, mission-based utilization of the renovated physical spaces to meet the needs of our greater community. See more about Thomas Berry Place and the capital plan to fund it here. You can view the groundbreaking ceremony on that page as well.
Walking with the Crucified - Thomas Berry Place will include the Reconnect Brooklyn ministries founded in Brooklyn to engage young people looking for a positive life change, the program creates social enterprise business to employ youth and teach life skills as well as assisting with next steps in life. Reconnect now resides and is expanding into our Jamaica, NY retreat house located in the Passionist’s Thomas Berry Place in order to deepen the impact on young people’s lives. Here they will not only continue to expand their external business endeavors such as their printing and graphics shop, reopen the Reconnect Bakery but also be part of "fabric" of the renewed retreat house. Here they will tend to the organic and hydroponic gardens, help maintain the house and grounds and be part of live retreats.
Justice for the Earth - St. Gabriel’s Church in Toronto is designed on the principles of Fr. Thomas Berry, C.P. It was constructed in 2006, the church is the first in Canada to receive LEED Gold certification. The church has also created a community garden that supplies other ministries with fresh produce. The Passionists in Toronto are also engaging in a Synodality process that will help define and grow the mission and work of the Passionist Family there, with focus on Laudato Si' and integral ecology.
Passionists embrace solar power
This fifth anniversary year of Laudato Si’ has been a time of reflection and accountability. Father Jim O’Shea, CP, provincial for the Passionists of the St. Paul of the Cross Province, and Page Gravely of Catholic Energies, recount their collaboration to plan and implement a series of major solar power installations at Passionist properties in the continental United States and Puerto Rico. Fr. Jim explains, “Our legacy will include the visual witness that we tried to do something about climate change. The Passionists have now created their own story about acting on our beliefs, a story we hope will only motivate others as well.” Read the full story here.
Click here if you are interested in learning more about solar power and Catholic Energies, a program of the Catholic Climate Covenant that works with Catholic organizations to implement solar energy.