12/25/17 – ‘The Sultan and the Saint’ tells of breaking down the unknown
National Catholic Reporter – What impact can one encounter make? While details are scarce about the meeting between St. Francis of Assisi and Sultan Malik al-Kamil of Egypt in the 13th century amid the Fifth Crusade, it has become an important symbol of interfaith dialogue and the pursuit of peace, even in the midst of great conflict.The historic meeting of the two faith leaders will receive a fresh look Dec. 26 on PBS, at 8 p.m. Eastern, in the new docudrama “The Sultan and the Saint,” which blends scholarly, documentary-style interviews with dramatic reenactments of the story and with Academy Award-winning actor Jeremy Irons as narrator.
A regular presence at many of the screenings throughout the country in the past year was Franciscans. The Franciscan Action Network worked closely with Unity Productions Foundation in promoting the film, and several communities of Franciscan sisters assisted with some of the documentary research. “In this time, in this climate, in our country — in the world, actually — but in our country of rising Islamophobia, we thought it was very important for Franciscans and other Christians to learn more about true Islam and its commitment to peace,” Franciscan Sr. Marie Lucey, associate director of Franciscan Action Network, told NCR. Read more
12/21/17 – Wells Fargo Launches Stakeholder Advisory Council
Pensions & Investments- Wells Fargo & Company (WFC) today announced the launch of a Stakeholder Advisory Council, which was formed to provide insight and feedback to the company’s Board of Directors and senior management from a stakeholder perspective. The council’s focus will be to deepen the company’s understanding of important current and emerging issues relevant to the company and its stakeholders, including serving the financial needs of underserved communities, diversity and social inclusion, and environmental sustainability. Sr. Nora Nash has been named a council member. Read more
12/18/17 – Clergy to GOP Reps: Vote No on Tax Bill
Delaware County Times – Clergy and members of Philadelphia Organized to Witness, Empower and Rebuild (POWER) traveled to the offices of U.S. Reps. Mike Fitzpatrick, R-8 of Levittown, Ryan Costello, R-6 of West Goshen and Pat Meehan, R-7 of Chadds Ford delivering a message to the GOP congressmen to vote against party lines. Read more!
12/18/17 – Sister act: how a Philadelphia nun faced up to Wall Street
The Guardian – Sister Nora Nash regularly meets with CEOs of big banks, arms makers, and tobacco giants, using her order’s position as a shareholder to fight for change. As director of the corporate social responsibility office for the Sisters of St Francis of Philadelphia, an order of about 160 Roman Catholic nuns located south-west of the city, Nash has worked for years to get the hundreds of companies that populate the nuns’ bulging stock portfolio to behave better. Read more!
12/1/17 – Religious Leaders Reject GOP Tax BIll, Call for ‘Faithful Budget”
National Catholic Reporter – Interfaith leaders convened on Capitol Hill Thursday to call attention to the enormous harm the proposed Republican tax bill will cause to poor and middle-income Americans. Several Franciscan sisters watched in support of their colleague Patrick Carolan, executive director of the Franciscan Action Network, who was also arrested. We’re hoping to change hearts,” Carolan said.
Franciscan Sisters Marie Lucey and Maria Orlandini, holding signs that read “Franciscans say no to tax bill,” lamented how passage of the bill would affect their ability to support the poor. “It involves so many the things we care about,” said Lucey. Read More.
11/17/17 – Investors to Congress: Bipartisan Dream Act is Both a Business and Moral Imperative
ICCR – A group of 112 institutional investors representing hundreds of billions of dollars in assets and led by the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR)–including the Sisters of St. Francis–announced that they have sent a letter to Congress requesting immediate action on the Dream Act of 2017 (H.R. 3440, S.1615), a “clean”, bi-partisan bill unfettered by other amendments, that protects the immigration status of recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Read More
11/7/17 – Family Rallies for Chester man imprisoned 37 years for murder he says he did not commit.
Philadelphia Inquirer/Philly.com – Several women (including our Sisters Jean Rupertus and Maggie Gannon) affiliated with local religious orders also were present Tuesday. They said they were moved by Evans’ ability to forgive. Read more.
11/6/17 – CCHD grants help empower East Bay groups
The Catholic Voice – Sister Maureen Duignan, OSF, executive director of the East Bay Sanctuary Covenant was presented the Lifetime Achievement Award by the CCHD Local Committee during the luncheon. Established in 1982 by five Berkeley churches, the EBSC has been helping asylum seekers, refugees and undocumented minor children with housing, employment, educational and medical needs. The organization has provided legal help for the “dreamers” and has provided scholarships and other forms of support to immigrants and refugees from Haiti. Read more!
10/25/17 – Corporate Secretary: Nuns battle online-only AGMs
Sisters of St Francis of Philadelphia file resolutions with ConocoPhillips and Comcast
The Sisters of St Francis of Philadelphia, known for their work with the poor and elderly and giving a voice to those who usually go unheard, are taking their work to Wall Street by campaigning against online-only shareholder meetings.
The order of more than 400 Catholic nuns have filed resolutions with ConocoPhillips, the oil group, and Comcast, the telecoms company, over their decisions to abandon physical AGMs for shareholders, Corporate Secretary sister publication IR Magazine reports.
The nuns want businesses to reintroduce face-to-face meetings with direct access to boards alongside virtual events.
The ConocoPhillips resolution has been co-filed by the Church of the Brethren Benefit Trust, which oversees the retirement income of pastors and members of the Brethren community, and the Needmor Fund, a social justice organization. Read more
9/23/17 – URGENT: There’s a new Obamacare repeal bill in the senate. (YES, AGAIN!) Call your senators at (202) 224-3121 and tell them to save our healthcare.
The Senate-Cassidy Graham Bill
There would be NO guarantee of coverage for people with pre-existing conditions. Each state that accepts federal block grant funding could waive the ACA’s rules for covering the 10 essential health benefits and other consumer protections. Insurers could take health status into account and raise rates for people with pre-existing conditions. (Note: Pennsylvania already has not been able to pay Medicare $1.2 billion.)
This Jimmy Kimmel YouTube video gives clarity to what is happening:
Call your senators today!
8/10/17 – Tacoma breaks ground for the first free-standing rehab hospital west of the Cascades.
University Place Press – Ketul J. Patel, chief executive officer of CHI Franciscan Health, did thank all of the attending Sisters of St. Francis for having a big hand in developing the reality of this new rehabilitation hospital. Patel said the sisters have helped CHI Franciscan Health enter into new markets, new programs and new services throughout Puget Sound. Read more.
6/23/17 – Dollar Tree says it’s protecting consumers from toxic chemicals. Group wants proof.
pilotonline.com – A group of consumer advocates and a Catholic nun well known for encouraging corporations to behave want the Chesapeake-based retailer to prove it, especially as it relates to keeping harmful phthalate chemicals – often used to make plastics soft – lead, BPAs and other toxic materials out of children’s toys and products. “We’re not getting any data that tells us they’re doing any work,” said Sister Nora Nash with the Sisters of St. Francis in Philadelphia. Read more.
6/7/17 – Local Investors Both Large and Small Vote for ExxonMobil Climate-Change Analysis
PIVOT.Today – The resolution originated from members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility like the Aston-based Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia, which voted on behalf of its 5,900 shares. Malvern’s Vanguard, meanwhile, also voted on behalf of its 299 million shares, or seven percent of all ExxonMobil shares. Read more.
6/7/17 – Comcast’s 2nd Virtual Shareholder Meeting Gets Poor Reviewed from Activists
Philadelphia Inquirer/Philly.com – The Friends Fiduciary is part of a coalition, with the Sisters of St. Francis religious order, that filed a shareholder resolution seeking Comcast to more fully disclose its “grassroots” lobbying expenditures. Comcast says it discloses millions of dollars in lobbying expenditures and has recommended that shareholders vote against the resolution. Read more.
6/1/17 – Vanguard, Philly Nun Press ExxonMobil to Adopt New Climate Change Practice
PhillyMag.com – Among the shareholders who cast the historic vote is Malvern-based mutual funds giant Vanguard, according to the Washington Post. And as the Inquirer reports, Sister Nora Nash, director of corporate responsibility for the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia also had a hand in steering the vote against ExxonMobil management.
5/31/17 – ExxonMobil Shareholders Vote ‘Yes’ on Climate-Change Analysis, including Vanguard
The Philadelphia Inquirer – “Fewer have likely heard of Sister Nora (Nash). She’s no ordinary nun — she is director of corporate responsibility for the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia.” Read more.
3/30/17 – Sister Dolora Taylor is the ‘heart and history’ of Immaculate Conception School
The Baltimore Sun – “I love that little nun.” That’s how Immaculate Conception School principal Madeline Meaney describes her affection for Sister Dolora Taylor of the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia. Taylor, who is 84 years old and four-feet ten-inches tall, recently celebrated her 20th year working as a record keeper at the Catholic school in downtown Towson. Read more.
3/20/17 – Wells Fargo Books Plush Resort for Company Meeting – and Some Shareholders Aren’t Happy
The Charlotte Observer – This is an indication that the company didn’t assess the value of being more humble in light of the scandal and are asking shareholders to find a place to stay that is off the beaten path because they don’t want to be exposed to protesters,” said Sister Nora Nash, a nun with the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia, which owns Wells Fargo shares. Read more.
3/20/17 – PETA Buys Stock in Canada Goose to Protect Use of Down and Fur
TriplePundit – Religious orders, including the famous Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia, have long used stock purchases to influence corporate policies through the power of shareholder resolutions. Long an irritant to many public company executives and directors, the Sisters of St. Francis most recent quest was the filing of proposals ahead of Wells Fargo’s annual shareholders meeting. The order’s nuns asked for more accountability from the company after a year of scandals rocked the bank, from allegedly bending military laws to the 2 million “fake accounts” fiasco. Read more.
3/17/17 – Wells Fargo Leaders Reaped Lavish Pay Even as Account Scandal Unfolded
NY Times – Wells Fargo and its leaders have expressed much contrition about the bank’s misdeeds, which included setting up as many as 2 million bank accounts without customers’ consent. Top executives have surrendered more than $90 million in compensation, fired employees at all levels and vowed to clean house. Read more.
3/16/17 – Wells Fargo shareholders call for a new, broader probe into the bank’s accounts scandal
LA Times –
The Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia are disappointed that the Wells Fargo Board recommended a vote against our resolution requesting a Business Standards Review. Read more
– Wells Fargo ‘s board of directors awarded Chief Executive Timothy Sloan $12.8 million for his work last year, a 17% increase. Read more
Pensions and Investments
– Wells Fargo is asking investors to vote against a pension fund-led shareholder proposal that calls for a comprehensive report from the bank on its retail banking sales practices. Read more
3/16/17 – Spokane Guilds’ School agrees to buy former St. Joseph Property
Spokane Journal – Nonprofit expects to develop $15 million facility on property in U District – Read more.
3/7/17 – At Neumann University: Tea and Franciscan identity
Global Sisters Report – When Neumann University‘s Marguerite O’Beirne was pondering the best way to engage her campus community in informal conversations about Franciscan identity, perhaps it’s no surprise that her mind went to tea. Read more.
2/27/17 – Light of Convent Shines on New Thrift Shop in York (PA)
York Daily Record – The light of an old convent fills the new location of St. Mary’s Thrift Shop in York. That light is filtered through the stained glass windows that once surrounded the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia in their home at 26 East College Avenue. Read more.
12/10/16 – Where Wells Fargo Goes From Here
Business Ethics – Why has it been so difficult for a values-driven shareholder investor group with over $200 billion in invested capital to persuade a bank now dealing with a very public ethics crisis to do some structured self-examination? The bank ranked lowest in responsible lending and risk management in the shareholder group’s 2013 survey of seven largest banks. Nevertheless, it has repeatedly resisted the request to do a business standards review. These shareholders believe the bank can do a better job aligning business practices with its stated ethics principles.
So, for the third time, the Financial Services Working Group of the Interfaith Center for Corporate Responsibility (ICCR) has submitted to Wells Fargo a shareholder resolution asking for a business standards review report; the resolution is intended to be voted on at the bank’s April 2017 shareholder meeting. Read more.
10/10/16 – Religious activist investors push Wells Fargo over fake accounts scandal
Philadelphia Business Journal – Philadelphia, PA – A group of nuns and religiously-affiliated investors want Wells Fargo & Co. to disclose more about why employees opened millions of accounts without customers’ permission. Read more.
10/8/16 – St. Joseph’s and CHI Franciscan draw from past to guide future
The News Tribune – Tacoma, WA – Ketul Patel answers to a higher power. The Sisters. They’re the ones who hired the CHI Franciscan CEO 19 months ago. And their vision is what guides him today. “One of the things that drew me here is the passion that our sisters have for what we’ve become over the past 125 years,” Patel said during a recent interview in his downtown office. Read more.
10/6/16 – Author Frida Berrigan encourages “modest work” in wake of election
National Catholic Reporter – Silver Spring, MD – Our Sister Marie Lucey was one of two local peacemakers honored at a Pax Christi group. Read more.
9/16/16 – Fig Tree Articles – St. Joseph Family Center to Close
The Fig Tree – Spokane, WA – Franciscan sisters close counseling center Read more.
9/12/16: Bishop Invites Men and Women in Religious Life to October 8 Convocation.
The Monitor – Trenton, NJ – Our Sister Anne Amati will present reflections on Mercy. Read more.
8/31/16 – Franciscan Sister Makes Big Imprint on Tiny Steps
The Dialog – Wilmington, DE – Read about our Sister Elise Betz. Read more.
8/11/16 – Shareholders, consumer groups press KFC on antibiotics use
Meat+Poultry – Oakland, CA – Two shareholders of Yum! Brands stock filed a proposal urging the owner of KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell brands to quickly phase out meat and poultry sourced from animals given antibiotics. Oakland-based As You Sow and the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia co-filed the proposal on Aug. 9. Read more.
8/1/16 – Neumann President Dr. Rosalie Mirenda retiring
Delco Times – Aston, PA – Dr. Rosalie M. Mirenda, Neumann University’s longest-serving president, will retire on June 30, 2017, the lifetime educator announced in a letter to the school community Monday. Read more.
5/25/16 – St. Francis House director honored for humanitarianism
The News Tribune – Puyallup, WA – Sister Pat Michalek, executive director at the St. Francis House, was recently awarded the Melvin Jones Fellowship Award by the Puyallup Lions Club for her work in the community. Michalek’s parents, Doris and Stan Michalek, started the Puyallup St. Francis House in 1974. Read more.
5/23/16 – Sisters lead the way in mission investing that influences corporate policy and advances social good
Global Sisters Report – ” . . . Sr. Nora Nash is the director of corporate responsibility for the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia, who say they were among the first congregations to establish a policy on these types of alternative investments. Their work in the area began in 1985 and now includes aspects such as investing in the Disability Opportunity Fund, which finances organizations serving the disability market, focusing on affordable housing, schools and vocational training centers.” Read more.
5/4/16 – Alliance of moms, religious groups criticizes efforts to block new oil and gas rules in PA.
Newsworks – It might seem like an unusual alliance, but leaders on both sides of the abortion debate are teaming up behind a common cause: more regulations on oil and gas drilling in Pennsylvania. “We are living in a very toxic community, a community and a state that allows communities to be exposed to wells, compression stations, pipelines, distribution stations, methane leaks and other greenhouse gas emissions,” said our Sister Nora Nash. Read more.
3/7/16 – St. Francis de Sales school demise grieves all ages
Delco Times – Aston, PA – Four years ago, St. Francis de Sales Grade School in the Lenni section of Aston was granted a reprieve after members of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s Blue Ribbon Commission recommended it close and students attend St. Thomas the Apostle Grade School about 2 miles away in Chester Heights.
A “Save Our School” committee was successful in its appeal to Archbishop Charles Chaput to keep the school, established in 1895 by the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia, open. Read more.