Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community Service for Jean Donovan on 41th Anniversary of the Four Women Murdered in El Salvador for Their Witness to Justice on December 2, 1980, 4:00PM on Zoom

https://www.clevescene.com/scene-and-heard/archives/2020/12/02/forty-years-ago-four-churchwomen-including-two-from-cleveland-were-murdered-in-el-salvador

 

The following information is in preparation for our Zoom Graveside Service scheduled for 4:00 pm Thursday afternoon, December 2, 2021

To connect to Zoom, please follow the instructions below: You can join the meeting between 3:45-4:00PM

To connect via the internet https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86240868327?pwd=ZWNhdHRudTlFSjVBRlF5QVo5L3VGZz09Meeting ID: 862 4086 8327

Password: 1066

Dial 1-929-436-2866 Meeting ID: 862 4086 8327 Password: 1066

GRAVESIDE SERVICE IN MEMORY OF JEAN DONOVAN 41TH ANNIVERSARY— December 2, 1980-2021

Michael: We warmly welcome you to our inclusive Catholic Community of Mary Mother of Jesus based in Sarasota, FL. During the time of pandemic, we have become a community without walls or boundaries, thanks to the technology of ZOOM. While everyone will be muted for most of the Service today, we invite you to join Joan Meehan in the parts designated “All” and to sing aloud our closing song. All readers previously designated will “unmute” for their part. We hope you enjoy this special ZOOM event, a special offering of the MMOJ Community and the Manasota Chapter of Pax Christi USA. And, again, thanks for coming!

Mary Al: 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.

Joan M//ALL: [together] Anyone among you who aspires to greatness must serve the rest.

Mary Al: 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.

Joan M/ALL: [together] And anyone among you who wishes to be first must serve the needs of all.

Anna: “What do you want?” Jesus asked

Mary Al: 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.

Joan M/ALL: [together] You must serve, as if enslaved, just as the Promised One came not to be served but to serve.

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

Mary Al: 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.

Joan M/ALL: [together] Anyone among you who aspires to greatness must serve the rest.

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

Kathryn: 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.

Joan M/ALL: [together] Anyone among you who aspires to greatness must serve the rest.

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

Kathryn: 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.

Joan M/ALL: [together] And anyone among you who wishes to be first must serve the needs of all.

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

Kathryn: 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.

Joan M/ALL: [together] Anyone among you who aspires to greatness must serve the rest.

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

Kathryn: 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.

Joan M/ALL: [together] You must serve, as if enslaved, just as the Promised One came not to be served but to serve.

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

Kathryn: 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.”

Michael: 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.

Joan M/ALL: [together] May they rest in peace, may she rest in peace, may the martyrs reign on high! Alleluia!

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
[Any closing comments by Bridget Mary]

Our closing song will be “We Are Called”


https://youtu.be/r5r_MXgoUmI

Jean Donovan and Sr. Dorothy Kazel, OSU. Both worked together at Immaculate Conception parish in La Libertad, El Salvador.


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