“We have the gift of getting in those places and being present. I think it’s a ministry of presence.”
Listen to two Sisters of Mercy—Sister Pat Murphy and Sister JoAnn Persch—sharing their stories of what gives them energy to be a voice for the voiceless.
Sister Pat Murphy and JoAnn Persch were the instigators for starting a visitation ministry in Chicago detention centers for immigrant detainees. “We have the gift of getting in those places and being present. I think it’s a ministry of presence.” The interfaith visitation group they started also has at least 30 people present every Friday when the detention center sends buses and vans of people to be deported. The fact that they “don’t know what retirement means” is reflected by the strength of their ministry, even when it means lying down in front of the buses and vans to prevent them from “creating a new single-parent family poverty system.” The Sisters were also two of the featured speakers at the Chicago ELCA Glocal.
This clip comes courtesy of Will Coley from the Detention Watch Network. To hear how the Sisters got inside Illinois detention centers, go to http://soundcloud.com/detentionwatch/sets/interview-with-sisters-pat.