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Did You Know? | A Reflection from Ecuador

I was on the bus a few days ago coming back from another day at Manos and sitting next to Josue, one of our ayudantes (helpers) at Manos. In the silence of bus ride, he all of sudden turns to me and says: “Did you know that 80% of the people in my country are poor? And most of them are so poor, I wouldn’t even know where to begin to help them.” As he turned back forward, my jaw was naturally at my feet. I did in fact know this fact; it is well known that since the 1970’s, Ecuador’s drastic economic situation has spared few. But I was so shocked and humbled by this teenager’s insight. How terrible it must be to know this fact – that 4 out of 5 people in your own nation can barely afford to put food on the table and keep a roof over their head (and many of them cannot.) It’s such a small fact, but it has big implications. How is Ecuador, a nation that spends 50% of its budget servicing debt, supposed to help its own citizens? The gravity of the situation is even more weighing; where does one start to address such evasive poverty?

2012 Robert M. Holstein Award Winner

Throughout his life, Fr. Don MacMillan, S.J, has demonstrated tremendous commitment to a Catholic faith grounded in solidarity with the economically poor and marginalized in the United States and around the world.
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University Social Justice Student Leaders Converge at ISN Leadership Summit

Twenty-seven student leaders from Jesuit and other Catholic universities across the country are converging on San Francisco, California, for the Ignatian Solidarity Network’s 2nd annual University Leadership Summit from January 13-15, 2012 at the Mercy Retreat Center in Berlingame. The ISN University Leadership Summit invites emerging leaders for social justice to spend a weekend strengthening their capacity to effect positive social change while deepening their understanding of the relationship between faith and justice emphasized in the spirituality of St. Ignatius of Loyola.