Where am I?
Justice for Mike Brown
To the Fontbonne community:
We are all well aware of the tragic events that have unfolded in the Ferguson community over the last few days following the death of Mike Brown. These tragedies bring out emotions: anger, outrage, fear, sadness, emptiness and a deep sense of loss. We mourn the death of a young man ready, like so many of our students, to begin life as a college student. We mourn for his family now devastated by this sudden and tragic end of a life. We mourn for our friends and neighbors in Ferguson who have been engulfed by a wave churned up by deep seated feelings of distrust and difference. This wave directly affects some right here in our Fontbonne community. Some of our employees, students, alumni and good friends make their homes there.
Our heritage, deeply rooted in the charism of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, calls us to serve the "dear neighbor without distinction." Yet it is this distinction that, in some, evokes feelings of hatred. Rather than seeing the beauty of God's creation in the wonderful diversity of all people based on our cultures and the color of our skin, some see these differences as a means to separate and oppress. As a Catholic, CSJ, educational community, we must stand against this kind of hatred. As the facts unfold in the tragic death of Mike Brown, we are called to listen carefully and be ever vigilant in promoting equality, justice and peace.
During the very week that we welcome a diverse array of students from around the world and from different faith and ethnic backgrounds, we must make a statement that all are welcome here "without distinction."
Please join us on Friday, August 15, at 11:30 AM in Medaille Hall for a time of prayer, reflection and discussion. By doing so, may we be an example for others proving that we can rise above our differences and live in peaceful harmony.
J. Michael Pressimone, Ed.D.
6800 Wydown Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63105