Archive - March 18, 2013

1
What does Barry Hillenbrand (Ethiopia 1963-65) Have to Say About Pope Francis?
2
The New Pope and the Geopolitics of Secrecy by Brazilian Feminist Theologian Ivone Gebara, one of Latin America's Foremost Catholic Thinkers
3
Advisory council created by Kate Puzey Law issues first annual report
4
No Peace Corps Staff or PCVs to be ETed Because of Sequester

What does Barry Hillenbrand (Ethiopia 1963-65) Have to Say About Pope Francis?

Barry Hillenbrand (Ethiopia 1963-65) (Jesuit trained so he knows what he is talking about ) and who after the Peace Corps went on to be a correspondent of TIME magazine for more than 30 years serving most of those years as a foreign correspondent, including three years as South American Bureau Chief based in Rio de Janeiro and covering the early years of the Dirty War in Argentina sent me this email based on the recent blog about our new Pope. Here’s what Saint Barry had to say. (By the way, his wife would never call him a saint.) • Sigh.  First of all any archbishop who holds up a football banner while decked out in his miter has to be partly alright, but this cozy laddie-ness will no doubt be added to all those other overly charming traits that Donna Gebera finds so suspicious. I suspect that part of D. Gebera’s problem is . . .

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The New Pope and the Geopolitics of Secrecy by Brazilian Feminist Theologian Ivone Gebara, one of Latin America's Foremost Catholic Thinkers

[This is being circulated by the Catholic community I’m part of.] The new pope and the geopolitics of secrecy by Ivone Gebara (Brazilian feminist theologian Ivone Gebara is one of Latin America’s foremost Catholic thinkers. This article was first published in Portuguese and Spanish by Adital.) Now that the initial shock of Buenos Aires Cardenal Bergoglio’s election and the thrill of having a Latin American pope who is both cordial and friendly are over, it’s time for some reflection. Despite their value, the media also have the power to distract us, to lull our minds and keep us from allowing needed critical questions to surface.  In the days leading up to the papal election, many in Brazil and around the world were “hijacked” by live broadcasts from Rome.  Of course the historic events witnessed in these days are not everyday occurrences!  But what interests are leading the huge telecommunication industry . . .

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Advisory council created by Kate Puzey Law issues first annual report

But you won’t read it on the Peace Corps’s official main website.   The RPCV women of First Response Action are the courageous ones who worked so hard to make the law that protects Peace Corps Volunteers a reality.  The report is posted prominently on their website: http://firstresponseaction.blogspot.com Finding the report on the official Peace Corps website is instead  a “scavenger hunt”. Go to peace corps.gov and scroll to the bottom of the page. There you will find a wealth of links to important agency documents, including the Peace Corps Manual and Evaluation reports from the Inspector General’s office. But you won’t find a report entitled “Peace Corps Volunteer Sexual Assault Advisory Council Annual Report”. You have to know to scroll down, on that main website, to the heading labeled “Media”, click on ” News Releases”. The disclaimer on this webs page is that only press releases for the last 90 . . .

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No Peace Corps Staff or PCVs to be ETed Because of Sequester

The Peace Corps Agency is not planning any furloughs for the FY2013 year, and they are now working so as not to furlough anyone in FY 2014 if the Sequester has its full effect on the government.  That said, they are looking at ways to “cut back on headquarters staff”  either through extended lapses in staffing or hiring freezes.  At this time there are no expected staff reductions in the field in either FY 2013 or FY 2014 (i.e. all staff reductions will be taken at HQ).   There are also no plans to reduce the total number of PCVs currently overseas.   In 2014, however, they might have to cut 200-300 Volunteer positions if the sequester isn’t resolved.

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