NETWORK is Surrounded by Jesuit Energy
By Casey Schoeneberger
November 16, 2010
Jean, Mary and I had the privilege of attending the Ignatian Solidarity Network Teach-In in Georgetown this past weekend. The teach-in is a gathering of Jesuit schools from all over the country who get together to learn and lobby on pressing human rights issues. This year’s ISN teach-in focused on immigration reform, climate change, and closing the School of Americas. This annual fall event is not only a chance to widen our exposure to crucial justice issues, and tell others about NETWORK, but to see old friends.
It is nothing less than fascinating, witnessing those whom I knew as fellow classmates in college educating their own students on how to lead lives that do justice. In just a few short years I have seen my fellow classmates go from students to young teachers and advocates, educating young people who one day will continue their own work on behalf of people who are poor and marginalized.
I’ll be honest and admit that I became a little disheartened by the recent election results, but this past weekend I found a renewed strength at the ISN teach-in. Individuals and schools were propelled by their faith background to come to D.C and speak for those who cannot speak for themselves. Groups traveled hundreds, or even thousands, of miles to have their voice heard and see policy in action, and I have the privilege to work and live in D.C, witnessing the policy-making process every day.
I’m encouraged not only by these students’ enthusiasm and lobbying efforts, but by the fact that they brought the gift of their enthusiasm here to D.C, giving me a renewed sense of hope. Elections may not have gone my way, but this past weekend, there were thousands of young people in D.C who did not allow themselves to become discouraged by the election, standing strong for those marginalized in our society.