Erie's own to speak to at Global Summit VI

Categories:  Community    News & Politics
Friday, November 7th, 2014 at 9:52 AM
Erie's own to speak to at Global Summit VI by Dan Schank

Sister Joan Chittister is a very busy woman.

She is perhaps the only living human being whose qualifications include Benedictine Nun, Social Psychologist, and Huffington Post contributor. She's also the author of over fifty books – on subjects like forgiveness, inner freedom, the aging process, and feminist spirituality. In her regular column for the National Catholic Register, she weighs in on big subjects like gender inequality, gun legislation, and American exceptionalism – as well as less familiar ones like Bhutan's efforts to quantify “Gross National Happiness.”

Friday, Nov. 7 at the Bayfront Convention Center, she'll share her thoughts about citizenship. Chittister has plenty of homegrown wisdom on the issue. As a member of the Benedictine Sisters of Erie, she contributes to a variety of ministries that serve the needy in our local community, such as the Emmaus Soup Kitchen on ninth street and the Neighborhood Art House on tenth. Through the Joan Chittister Fund for Prisoners, she provides free books to people in need of spiritual guidance at 75 prisons across the country. She also runs her own research center, Benetvision, which approaches spiritual needs from a 21st century perspective.

Her service as a global citizen is equally impressive. Currently, she serves as co-chair of the U.N.'s Global Peace Initiative for Women, which stresses non-violent conflict resolution in places like Israel and Palestine. Chittister's service isn't limited to Christian initiatives – in fact, she's particularly committed to forming inter-faith partnerships. In 2006, she coordinated a retreat for monastic women  at the Dharma Drum Mountain Center in Taiwan. About a year later, she participated in the Dalai Lama's first summit on Religion, Conflict and Peace-Building with a diverse array of noteworthy spiritual leaders at Emory University.

As a nun more interested in social justice than our habits in the bedroom, Sister Joan Chittister makes good on the progressive potential of the Pope Francis era. If you need a boost of energy in the wake of the mid-term elections, Friday's lecture might be the medicine you're looking for. 

“The Role of Citizens in a Just World Power” - with Sister Joan Chittister, Social Analyst and Religious Leader with the Benedictine Sisters of Erie, PA

11.7 // The Bayfront Convention Center // 7:30pm

Dan Schank can be contacted at

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