Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Zoom Service in Memory of Jean Donovan- 40th Anniversary, Dec. 2, 2020

ZOOM SERVICE IN MEMORY OF JEAN DONOVAN

40TH ANNIVERSARY— December 2, 1980-2020

 

Zoom link for video and audio: Wednesday, Dec. 2, 4pm


Please type in Meeting ID and Password:


Meeting ID: 
776 345 0316 


Password: 1066


Dial-in for audio only


929 436 2866 


Meeting ID: 862 4086 8327

Jean Donovan



A PERSONAL REFLECTION BY JACK—A few moments with Jack on the subject of Jean Donovan is fitting as we begin.  Of all of us, Jack has been the earliest visitor to the gravesite and has developed a personal relationship with Jean.

 

Michael: Today we honor a dedicated lay woman, missionary and martyr whose memory must never be forgotten.  As the great Ignatius of Antioch once said, “It is in the blood of martyrs we find the seeds of faith.”  Let our faith be nourished as we gather before the earthly remains of our sister, Jean, and our desire be enkindled to follow in like commitment…to the death.


MaryAl//ALL: Anyone among you who aspires to greatness must serve the rest.


Michael: Jean Donovan received a masters degree in business administration from Case Western Reserve University, and then took a job as management consultant for an accounting firm in Cleveland, Ohio.  She was on her way to a successful business career.


MaryAl/ALL: And anyone among you who wishes to be first must serve the needs of all.


Mary Kay: “What do you want?” Jesus asked


Michael: But Jean was not content and began a search for some deeper meaning in life.  While volunteering in the Cleveland Diocese Youth Ministry with the poor, she heard about the diocesan mission project in El Salvador.  It was what she was looking for.


MaryAl/ALL: You must serve, as if enslaved, just as the Promised One came not to be served but to serve.


Anna: “Can you drink of the cup I am going to drink?” Jesus asked.


Michael: After her training, including a stint at Maryknoll in New York, Jean arrived in El Salvador, July 1979.  It was a time when repression by government forces was intensifying against rebel forces and the church had become a major target.  Jean became Caritas coordinator for the Cleveland Diocesan mission program.


MaryAl/ALL: Anyone among you who aspires to greatness must serve the rest.


Dotty: “Can you drink of the cup I am going to drink?” Jesus asked.


Michael: In addition to keeping the books, Jean worked at the local parish in La Libertad with Dorothy Kazel, an Ursuline sister from Cleveland, distributing food for the poor and the refugees as well as carrying out family education programs. 


MaryAl/ALL: Anyone among you who aspires to greatness must serve the rest.


Mary Kay: “Can you drink of the cup I am going to drink?” Jesus asked.


Michael: Jean’s time in El Salvador led her to those fundamental challenges of the meaning of life, of faith, in a world torn by injustice and violence against the poorest, the most vulnerable.  It was a personal challenge.


MaryAl/ALL: And anyone among you who wishes to be first must serve the needs of all.


Anna: “Can you drink of the cup I am going to drink?” Jesus asked.


Michael: Her mother Patricia in Sarasota said of her daughter’s work, “Jean took her commitment to the compesinos very seriously.  She was strongly motivated by St. Francis of Assisi and by Archbishop Oscar Romero.  She translated God’s teaching into clothing for the poor, feeding the hungry, and caring for the wounded refugees—mainly children who had lost what little they had.


MaryAl/ALL: Anyone among you who aspires to greatness must serve the rest.


Dotty: “Can you drink of the cup I am going to drink?” Jesus asked.


Michael: Jean was very devoted to Msgr. Romero, often coming the cathedral on Sundays to hear his homilies which at that time were the only source of news and truth left in El Salvador.  After his assassination, Jean and Dorothy were among those who took turns keeping vigil at his coffin.  They were present in the cathedral when the overflow crowd in the plaza attending his funeral on March 20, 1980, was attacked by security forces of the government, resulting in a panicked stampede.  This massacre left 44 laying dead and hundreds of wounded here and there.  As Jean sat crowded among the desperate people who fled into the cathedral for safety, she fully believed that she might die that day.


MaryAl/ALL: You must serve, as if enslaved, just as the Promised One came not to be served but to serve.


Mary Kay: “Very well,” said Jesus, “you will drink of my cup.”


Michael: The repression touched her in other very personal ways.  Friends were killed by death squads.  She witnessed one such killing.  Many of her friends tried to persuade her to leave El Salvador, but she comforted them with the quip, “They don’t kill blond-haired, blue-eyes North Americans.”

Two weeks before she was murdered, with the bloodbath already begun, she wrote to a friend in Connecticut: “Several times I have decided to leave El Salvador.  I almost could except for the children, the poor bruised victims of this insanity.  Who would care for them?  Whose heart would be so staunch as to favor the reasonable thing in a sea of their tears and helplessness.  Not mine, dear friend, not mine.”


The destinies of Maryknoll sisters, Maura Clarke and Ita Ford, Dorothy Kazel and Jean Donovan were joined  together in just the last months of their lives.  Murdered together by National Guardsmen in El Salvador on December 2, 1980, their deaths became martyrdom for a church of the poor in El Salvador and for thousands in the United States.  Their deaths are understood as martyrdom because the women did what Jesus of Nazareth did, and what he told us we should do to show we are disciples in this world—they loved the poor, and laid down their lives for them.  In this way, they became “friends” of Jesus.


MaryAl/ALL: May they rest in peace, may she rest in peace, may the martyrs reign on high!


Going Deeper with Jean Donovan- A Meditation

https://youtu.be/mA8j9CEQYBY



Closing Prayer offered by Bridget Mary


Compassionate God of the Universe, tonight we remember!

We remember Ursuline Sister Dorothy Kazel; we remember lay missionary, Jean Donovan; we remember Maryknoll sisters, Ita Ford and Maura Clarke.


They believed in Christ and they dedicated their lives in serving the poor.

We have told their story and brought to mind the sacrifices they made for the people of El Salvador.

Help us, Liberating God, to realize that—just like these martyred churchwomen—we have a responsibility to light the way for justice in the world.


Help us, like Dorothy, to be with those who wait, hope and yearn for peace.


Help us, like Jean, to endure hardships that prepare us to meet and love you more fully.


Help us, like Ita, to seize opportunities to be evangelized by walking with others who suffer.


Help us, like Maura, to believe you are present even in your apparent absence.


You, O Holy One, are our Healer and our Hope.  May your blessing be upon us who are gathered here tonight remembering our beloved martyrs of El Salvador.  For their lives continue to challenge us as we try to hear the urgent cry for justice in our world, and to make our lives paths of truth and peace.


God of surprises, we rely on your promise to be with us on our journey as we seek daily to follow you.  Be with us, guiding our lives every step of the way.


MaryAl/ALL: Amen.


Closing Song:




https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=luTgw96ZREA

No comments: