THE SAVING GRACE OF ANARCHY/LA PLEGARIA DE LA ANARQUÍA
SPENDING 7 TRILLIION BUCKS IN 7 DECADES/El Gasto de 7 trillones de Dólares en 7 Décadas
tRINITY hOUSE RENOVATION BEGINS SEPT. 18th, LOVE WILLING!
WHERE IS THE WAR?/¿Dónde Está la Guerra?
RISKING MERCY By Chelsea Collonge
WHERE HAVE ALL THE BAGELS GONE? GONE TO SOLDIERS, EVERYONE!!!
Trinity House Catholic Worker Ingredients By Chelsea Collonge, Jerome Herald & Marcus Page
TO KEEP THE FUNNEL FLOWING
FRIENDLY FACES BEHIND FREE FOOD By Chelsea Collonge
Freedom From Domestication By Derek Minno-Bloom
PoisonFire vs. Wildfire vs. Holy Fire
WHAT WAS SHARED. WHAT WAS GIVEN. WHAT WAS GAINED By Dreka
tRINITY hOUSE RENOVATION BEGINS SEPT. 18th, LOVE WILLING!
Once upon a time, Lita Benavidez bought a triangular-shaped piece of land and the two houses on it from her brother. She was
21 years old and her father who lived on site wanted the house to be used for good purposes. When Joe Pino wanted to marry
Lita, she pointed out that the marriage deal included her house and her father. So they got hitched in 1963, began to expand the
structure of the front house to make space for children, and eventually hitched the two houses together. That was a good use of
property—raising a family in the South Valley in the late 20th century.
The Community of Damien of Molokai found another good use of this house and bought it in 1994. The Damiens took care of
people dying with AIDS from 1995 to 2001, including men and babies with their mothers. In 1996, a construction crew called
“Creative Renovation Empowering Women” fixed up the back house for the AIDS patients. The front house needed renovation
as well, but the Damiens no longer needed this property for their mission. When their Board of Directors noticed (thanx to
Wanda!) that a new intentional community was being formed in the tradition of the Catholic Worker movement, they knew what
to do. Trinity House Catholic Worker, Inc. soon became the next organism to responsibly use this property to fulfill the wishes of
Lita's father—the triangular land and angular maze-like house at the corner of Euchariz & Five Points would continue to be used
for goodness' sake—feeding, housing, and clothing those in need.
When we moved in last year, the front house still needed massive reconstruction. Catholic Workers use the front house's
kitchen to regularly feed more than 50 people per meal at our community picnics. I'm extremely grateful for the six dozen
volunteers who have helped out here during our first year, and the three dozen donors who have helped us pay the bills that
come with running a house of hospitality that is our home.
While we beautify the rest of the front house, we can expand that kitchen. (Each side of the building has four bedrooms, two
bathrooms, and a kitchen.) All Workers, Guests and volunteers have expressed joy over the promise of property improvements
now set to begin on September 18th. Labor will be free, thanks to Youth Build—a charter school where the students get paid
(through independent funding) for their construction. Supplies to finish the front house (including windows) will cost at least
We still need 3 to 5 more Catholic Workers to join Trinity House before we can take in any more Guests. Catherine is
currently our only Guest, (Catherine is involved with Off Center Art Studio, and one of her paintings appears on page three of
this newsletter.) We expect the core Workers to be committed to the vision of the Catholic Worker movement, and to spend at
least a year at Trinity House.
Meanwhile we are able to offer free clothing and food to random folks wandering by daily. On Thursdays, anyone can do their
laundry here, and take a shower. Fridays, we serve a free lunch in front of UNM's bookstore, and Sundays' community picnics
(vegetarian soup, fruit salad, tea and meat sandwiches) are at 10th & Central. We're also happy that our monthly Catholic Worker
Roundtable Discussions resume in September. Please see the calendar on the last page of this newsletter for more information!
WHERE IS THE WAR?
A boy named Phillip, raised during the Great Depression, says he deeply respected “authority” in his youth. This son of
working class heroic farm folk (his parents are Tom & Frida) retrospectively describes his childhood view: “I have no idea how
the police undermine democracy and justice. Nor do I know, yet, that the state is the enemy, not the champion, of ordinary
people. Much later I will learn through hard experience that laws are written to protect power and privilege; not to make life more
secure for people like Thomas and Frida Berrigan.”
Clearly, those who run the government at its highest levels show no preferential option for the poor via their professional work.
The state’s essence contradicts Catholic Social Teaching as well as Christ’s basic message of justice, love and joy. But the vast
majority of people go along with the game, following laws, paying taxes, voting for “better” candidates (or the “lesser of two evils”),
etc. because the states’ powers have swindled us. They masterfully appeal to the average human conscience (manipulating us into
following along) despite the state’s primary motivation to maintain social control based on fear of beautiful human freedom
exercised by folks with different social values.
America’s potential for greatness and loving generosity is subverted by certain mainstream cultural values: materialism and
individualism. These values are enforced via international agreements like NAFTA, CAFTA, GATT and the FTAA, and codified
in laws regarding borders and “mandatory” income taxes to feed a government that fails to uphold altruism felt by the general
We know that the Zapatista movement was a direct reaction to NAFTA, and the migration of people from the South into the
USA is a direct response to the immorality exemplified by NAFTA, CAFTA & the FTAA. People are trying to take care of their
families and their own needs for justice and decent wages, often via the direct action of crossing the border without governmental
permissions, and have been doing so for a long time in North America. But suddenly, the issues of immigration are in the
limelight just in time to distract the masses from more serious human abuse issues in which the USA’s government is guilty of
crimes against humanity, tyranny, warmongering, outrageous deceptions of the public, etc.
Want to start another expensive, unjustified war of aggression and continue to dominate the global market to the benefit of the
wealthiest people in the wealthiest countries? Then divert media attention to other controversies so you can more easily distract
the public from their responsibility to create greater security and justice for the poor.
¿Dónde Está la Guerra?
Un chico de nombre Phillip, que creció durante la gran depresión, dijo que durante su juventud él tuvo mucho respeto por la
"autoridad". Este hijo de clase obrera y granjero heróico (sus padres Tom y Frida) describe retrospectivamente su punto de vista
en su niñez “No tengo la menor idea como la policía menosprecia la democracia y la justicia ni se aún como el estado es el
enemigo y no el campeón de la gente ordinaria, luego aprenderé por las duras experiencias que las leyes se escriben para
proteger el poder y el privilegio; y no para cuidar la seguridad de la gente como Tomas y Frida Berrigan.”
Claramente, las autoridades que gobiernan, en los altos niveles, dado su trabajo profesional no muestran la opción
preferencial por los pobres. La esencia del estado contradice la Enseñanza Social Católica asi como el Mensaje básico de Cristo
sobre la justicia, el amor y la alegría. Pero la inmensa mayoría de las personas sigue el juego de las leyes, pagando impuestos,
votando por los mejores candidatos o por los menos malos etc. porque los poderes del estado nos han engañado. Ellos motivan
magistralmente la conciencia humana (manipulándonos para que los sigamos) además de la motivación primordial del estado del
control social basado en el miedo de la bella libertad humana ejercitada por gente con valores diferentes.
El potencial de América por su grandeza y amorosa generosidad es subversiva por valores culturales convencionales del
materialismo e individualismo. Estos valores son reforzados por los acuerdos internacionales de NAFTA, CAFTA, GATT y
FTAA que se codifican en leyes respecto a fronteras e impuestos “obligatorios” que alimentan un gobierno que falla en apoyo a
los valores altruistas de la gente.
Sabemos que el movimiento Zapatita era una reacción directa a NAFTA y a la migración del Sur a EEUU porque iba a
empeorar este fenómeno, como re-acción de estos acuerdos internacionales e inmorales. Una necesidad justa para que la gente
cuide de su familia es un sueldo decente, los pobres se oblígan a cruzar la frontera sin los permisos legales, esto lo han hecho por
años. Pero de repente este asunto de la migración se convirtió en escándalo muy candente para distraer justo a tiempo toda la
propaganda de asuntos más graves de abusos humanos, crímenes contra la humanidad, invasión bélica, tiranía, engaños y
atroces al pueblo etc. en los que el gobierno de EEUU es culpable.
¿Se quiere empezar otra injustificada y costosa guerra agresiva y continuar el dominio del Mercado mundial que beneficia a
las personas ricas de los pais es mas ricos? Entonces hay que enfocar los medios en otras controversias para distraer al pueblo de
su responsabilidad de crear la seguridad y la justicia para el pobre.
SPENDING 7 TRILLIION BUCKS IN 7 DECADES
By Bud Ryan
All the money and resources spent on warfare has been stolen from the poor, many who have died from hunger. Stolen from
those who have died from lack of shelter. Stolen from those who have never come close to realizing their full potential as God's
children because they never got the educational opportunities that some of us take for granted.
Please let us not deceive ourselves into thinking that there have been no more nuclear weapons fatalities after those in
Hiroshima and Nagasaki,,, or in the cancer deaths of the Native Americans who mined the uranium, or even, ironically, the deaths
of some of the people who have designed and manufactured these weapons of annihilation. Because with the amount of money
spent on nuclear weapons from the start of the Manhattan Project until now, at over 7 trillion dollars, there are many more deaths
to account for.
That 7 trillion dollars has been stolen from those who never lived up to their full spiritual potential…We must find ways to make
amends to God and to each other. In pursuit of making amends I ask you to join Pax Christi New Mexico on August 6th up in Los
We are not pointing fingers at anyone, or any group, but are saying that we are all guilty, that we all must atone for the sin of
nuclear weapons, and altogether work towards their abolition. We are taking a Biblical approach with our Witness for Peace. In
the Book of Jonah, God asks Jonah to go to preach repentance in the city of Ninevah. Jonah tells them that they must wear
sackcloth and ashes as a sign of contrition to God. The people obey, even the King of Nineveh dons sackcloth, sits in ashes, and
proclaims that every person and every animal must wear these symbols of repentance.
Do any followers of Jesus really believe, deep in their hearts, that Jesus, the Prince of Peace, would condone nuclear weapons
for one minute? Archbishop Raymond Hunthausen has said, “Our nuclear war preparations are the global crucifixion of Jesus.
What we do to the least of these, through our nuclear war planning, we do to Jesus. This is his teaching. We cannot avoid it and
we should not try. Our nuclear weapons are the final crucifixion of Jesus, the extermination of the human family with whom he is
You may ask yourself what does nuclear abolition have to do with Trinity House Catholic Worker and our work to house and
feed the homeless. Something to ponder would be why are there so many homeless people? Why do at least 10,000 people die
each day of starvation? If the USA had not spent so much money on nuclear weapons how many of those people could have been
saved? With the imminent start of pit production (cores of nuclear weapons) to begin in Los Alamos in 2007, with the
corresponding colossal cost, how many more of our sisters and brothers will die because we as a country seem to have misplaced
priorities? Something we all need to think about.
Bud Ryan delivered the core of this message to an audience in Las Cruces, New Mexico in June 2005. Trinity House received it’s
name because the first two meetings to organize the House in 2004 were on Trinity Sunday and Trinity Nuclear Test Day (July
El Gasto de 7 trillones de Dólares en 7 Décadas.
Por Bud Ryan
Todo el dinero y los recursos (gastados en armamento para guerras) ha sido robado a l@s que se mueren de hambre. Robado a
l@s que han muerto por falta de techo. Robado de l@s que nunca llegaran a darse cuenta de sus potenciales, como hij@s de
Dios, por su falta de acceso a una educación que otr@s damos por hecho.
Por favor, no caigamos en la trampa de creer que no ha habido otros desastres nucleares desde Hirosima o Nagasaki...No nos
olvidemos de las muertes de l@s indígenas norteamericanos que trabajaron en las minas de uranio; ni de las mujeres, irónicas, las
personas que diseñaron y produjeron estas armas de aniquilación. No nos podemos olvidar de las muertes que aun quedan por
contar debido al "Proyecto Manhattan"...el cual, desde su comienzo hasta ahora, lleva gastado cerca de 7 trillones de dólares en
7 trillones de dólares han sido robados a esas personas que jamás llegaran a experimentar su máximo potencial espiritual...
Debemos encontrar la forma de satisfacer a Dios y a nosotr@s mism@s. Como una forma de acercamiento, te proponga que lo
unas a Pax Christi de Nuevo Mexico el 6 de Agosto en Los Álamos. No queremos señalar con el dedo a ningun@ individuo o
grupo, pero si decimos que tod@s somos culpables de la existencia y proliferación de la industria nuclear y es nuestro deber
trabajar junt@s por su abolición. Testig@s por la Paz (Witness for Peace) tiene su origen en un pasaje bíblico. En el libro de
Jonás (mira la traducción de Jonás, que yo de la Biblia no se mucho), no solo lo hace. Si no que pide a l@s arrepentidos que
usen sacos y cenizas como su muestra de arrepentimiento ante Dios. La gente obedece e incluso el rey de Ciudad de Nivehah
(busca la traducción) exige a todas las personas y animales en su reino que muestren tales signos de arrepentimiento.
Si nos preguntásemos: ¿que haría Jesús?, ¿cual seria la respuesta? ¿Algun@ de l@s discípulas de Cristo realmente cree, el lo
profundo de sus corazones, que El, el Príncipe de la Paz, condonaría las armas nucleares? El Arzobispo Raymond Hunthausen
ha dicho: “Nuestra preparación nuclear armamentística es la crucifixión global de Jesús. ¿Que nosotr@s hacemos a lo menos de
estos, por nuestra planificacion nuclear de la guerra, nosostr@s hacemos a Jesús? Esta es su enseñanza. No podemos ni
debemos evitarlo. Nuestras armas nucleares son la crucifixión final de Cristo, el exterminio de la familia humana de la que El es
Bud Ryan pronuncio este discurso en junio de 2005 en Las Cruces, Nuevo Mexico. Las dos primeras reuniones en “Trinity
House” fueron en el 2004 en un “Trinity Sunday” y el 16 de Julio o día de “El sitio de la prueba nuclear.”
THE SAVING GRACE OF ANARCHY
By Marc Page
As a teenager, I had a vague notion that anarchy was a desirable ideal, based on contemporary punk rock lyrics. In my third
decade of living on earth I finally engaged the philosophies of “anarchism” and “personalism” through my involvement with the
Food Not Bombs and the Catholic Worker movements. Both anarchism and personalism regard the individual person’s value as
superior to the nation/state/government. Anarchists and personalists believe that each human is more important than any
institution or structure created by such humans. When enough individuals exercise their freedom to take personal responsibility
for each other, we experience the utopian anarchy that incorporates personalist ideals.
Badmouthing anarchy began as soon as anarchism appeared in the working class. Those controlling the system don’t want the
empowerment of the underclass, so they demonize or marginalize anarchists. They then spin anarchism as an irresponsible evil
and anarchy as a naiive fantasy. Americans regularly perpetuate the misconception by misusing the word “anarchy” to describe the
condition where social decency breaks down and respectful attitudes disintegrate.
Chaotic, violent, random immature activities are actually the OPPOSITE of anarchy, because the good philosophy of anarchism
respects autonomy and tends towards a simply liberating egalitarian social order. The pure essence of anarchy runs contrary to
hierarchy and systemic control by one group over any other group. Anarchism, like socialism, altruistically encourages people
People power is natural when important social and economic decisions are being made locally. A major aim of the Catholic
Worker movement is decentralization. Organizing our society as autonomous sub-groups has greater spiritual virtue than placing
power in a national government. The common challenge is for each generation to gain wisdom and maintain loving relationships,
so that the people won’t fall into the common trap when feeling disempowered—the immature or weak cry for salvation via some
centralized authority which hinders personal authority and community-based responsibility.
Saint John-of-the-Cross talked about a certain lawlessness that comes with spiritual maturity. He compared the spiritual
development trip to the work of climbing a mountain. Reaching the summit builds the strength in one’s character implied in
Ammon Hennacy’s statement, “an anarchist is anyone who doesn't need a cop to tell him what to do.”
Ammon Hennacy advocated for anarchism because it can be practiced NOW. You don’t have to wait for the state to wither
away to be an anarchist today. Because anarchists exercise freedom and responsibility, their philosophy clashes with the
methodology of violence. Anarchism is a pie in the face of domination, capitalism, politics and abuse—which are found in the
antichristian spirit of cruelty.
Ever since humans have held the capacity for arranging beautiful social agreements and structures there has been the hope for
non-coercive & loving arrangements. We always need such situations. In light of any chaos that governments play against their
people to reinforce domination and exploitation, we now need a greater commitment to the social principles of personalism and
the spiritual disciplines of anarchism.
LA PLEGARIA DE LA ANARQUÍA
Por Marc Page
Cuando era adolescente, tenía una noción vaga de que la anarquía era una ideal deseable, basado en las líricas
contemporáneas del punk rock. En mi tercera década de vivir en esta tierra, finalmente anexé las filosofías del “anarquismo” y del
“personalismo” con mi trabajo en Food not Bombs (Comida si, Bombas No) y el movimiento del Trabajador Católico. Tanto el
anarquismo como el personalismo miran el valor de la persona individual como superior a la nación, al estado, al gobierno. Los
anarquistas y los personalistas creen que el ser humano es más importante que cualquier institución o estructura creada por tales
seres humanos. Cuando bastantes individuos ejercitan su libertad para tomar la responsabilidad personal de cada uno,
experimentamos la anarquía utópica que incorpora ideales del personalista.
Los insultos hacia la anarquía comenzaron en cuanto el anarquismo aparece en la clase obrera. Aquellos que controlan el
sistema no desean que la clase baja y trabajadora tenga el poder, entonces demonizan o marginan a los anarquistas. Luego, giran
el concepto de anarquismo como un mal irresponsable, y a la anarquía como una fantasía sin sentido. Los estadounidenses por lo
regular perpetúan esta idea falsa empleando mal la palabra “anarquía” para describir la condición donde la decencia social se
desmorona, y las actitudes respetuosas se desintegran.
Actividades caóticas, violentas, inmaduras al azar son realmente lo CONTRARIO de la anarquía, porque la buena filosofía del
anarquismo respeta la autonomía y tiende hacia un orden y equilibrio social igualitario, hacia una liberación igualitaria.
La esencia pura de la anarquía funciona contrariamente a la jerarquía y al control sistematizado por un grupo sobre cualquier
otro grupo. Anarquismo, como socialismo, altruísticamente anima al poder del pueblo.
El poder del pueblo es natural cuando importantes decisiones sociales y económicas a nivel local se toman en cuenta. Un
punto primordial en el movimiento del Trabajador Católico es la descentralización. La organización de nuestra sociedad como
subgrupos autónomos tiene mayor virtud espiritual que poner nuestra energía en un gobierno nacional. El desafío común para
cada generación, es obtener sabiduría y mantener relaciones cordiales, basadas en amor, de modo que la gente no caiga en la
trampa común cuando se sienta sin poder, el ser inmaduro o débil llama a la salvación a través de una cierta autoridad
centralizada, lo que obstaculiza la autoridad personal y la responsabilidad de base comunitaria.
San Juan de la Cruz habló de cierta anarquía que viene con madurez espiritual. Él comparó el desarrollo del viaje espiritual
con el trabajo de subir una montaña. Alcanzar la cumbre fortalece el carácter implicado en la declaración de Ammon Hennacy,
“un anarquista es cualquier persona que no necesita que la poli le diga qué hacer.”
Ammon Hennacy abogó por el anarquismo porque puede ser practicado AHORA. Usted no tiene que esperar a que el estado
se marchite para ser un anarquista hoy. Debido a que los anarquistas ejercitan la
libertad y la responsabilidad, su filosofía choca con la metodología de la violencia. El anarquismo es una tarta en la cara de la
dominación, el capitalismo, la política y el abuso-que se encuentran en el espíritu anticristiano de la crueldad.
Desde el momento en que los seres humanos han tenido la capacidad para llegar a hermosos acuerdos sociales y estructuras,
ha habido la esperanza de arreglos no-coactivos y cariñosos.
Siempre necesitamos tales situaciones. En la luz de cualquier caos que los gobiernos emplean en contra de su pueblo para
reforzar la dominación y la explotación, ahora necesitamos un compromiso mayor a los principios sociales del personalismo y a
las disciplinas espirituales del anarquismo.
by Chelsea Collonge
As Catholic Workers we seek to take personal, immediate responsibility for the needs of others rather than relying on markets
or bureaucracies. This is central to our faith; as the Letter of James says, “If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food,
and one of you says to them, 'Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,'but you do not give them the things which are needed for the
body, what does it profit? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead” (James 3:15-17). When it comes to our
weekly free lunch, the police captain has
suggested we are actually acting in bad faith by maintaining the consistency of our service
after the city denied our first application for a permit. It is puzzling to him that we believe legality should be balanced by
practicality and morality. As followers of the nonviolent way of Jesus, we seek after a morality which includes justice and change,
therefore putting us at odds with the law from time to time.
James Douglass, long-time peace and social justice activist, defines obeisance to the state – for example, stopping our serving
because we prefer to obey an ordinance that is being unjustly applied than to risk arrest - as seeking freedom at the cost of the
truth. But how worthwhile is freedom in a society where our friends are suffering and we are forced to sit on our convictions? As
Gandhi declared in the Indian liberation movement, “We seek arrest because the so-called freedom is slavery.”
In that spirit we continue to do what is ours to do, spreading around the wealth through the instrument of this Trinity House
through weekly hospitality, food rescue, healthy meals, and resistance to nuclearism.
* Quote from “Remaining Awake Through a Great Revolution” Delivered at the National Cathedral, Washington, D.C., on 31
WHERE HAVE ALL THE BAGELS GONE? GONE TO SOLDIERS, EVERYONE!!!
By Marcus Page
As the readers of this publication know, Trinity House Catholic Worker has two roots to its name, and two hands to
its action. The first root is the Holy Trinity—the God of Christians and others worldwide. The second root is the Trinity Bomb
Test of 1945—the opening act of the abominable nuclear age. The two hands of our Catholic Worker house are those of service
and resistance. One hand honors the God of creation, justice and peace through facilitating free food, shelter, toilets and other
services for needy folks. The other hand resists the god of violence who consumes most of the wealth of America and who
preaches through the mass media.
Catholic Workers want to feed the human spirit and stop the forces of domination that destroy the humans. In our
food redistribution program, many bagels and free vegetables are available to poor folks, but will this food incite a revolution of
values? Can poor Americans unite for life's sake and topple the monstrous forces of militarism, nuclearism, racism and mandatory
poverty? Is the system already crumbling so that only those who play the game, pay taxes, choose mammon, will get what they
need while the rest of us may survive on the dumpster crumbs, wilted spinach and stale bagels?
For Tax-Day 2008, six nuclear abolitionists went to vigil, pray, and distribute leaflets at Los Alamos for their usual
monthly activity in front of the Laboratory. (LANL). I joined Mike Butler in the extra step of holding vigil throughout the night,
and we were arrested for our commitment to keep watch on the giant nuclear offender. Mike had never before been arrested at
this level—a potential penalty of a year in jail, and a jury trial in a county court.
In addition to working and praying for an end of the Nuclear Age we have also continued our work where smaller acts
of justice may thrive: hungry folks get meals or groceries, homeless folks get housing or shelter, abused folks fight back or get
liberated, wounded folks get relief or healing, etc. We are lucky to be part of such efforts at Trinity House, working for more
justice, more healing, more mercy, more peace, more creativity, more liberation. One way we tried to do “more” in the past six
months was to offer more people the chance to sleep at Trinity House. It's debatable whether enabling more PEOPLE to funnel
through our doors in shelter-style hospitality is a good trade-off with our prior ability to offer more TIME for a few individuals to
share housing with us.
A few months ago, we housed a friend of mine who suffered intensely from panic and anxiety to the Nth degree. As
we loved her for two weeks while her illness sapped our energy, another friend suffering from a brain injury and depression died
homeless in Albuquerque. Could we have done MORE? Does bringing more people into our Catholic Worker home mean
more healing, more mercy, more justice? Are we emotionally capable of handling more stress without adopting the cultural values
that include violence as a viable solution?
One of our Workers recently took a class on mental illness, to cope better with the disturbances of many of our
stressed out Guests. Such knowledge is a good tool, and best used with other tools: a capacity to love mercifully and gently, an
openness to friendship and hospitality for broken, angry people, and a strong prayer life to enable any other work to be
accomplished. Each day we pray for wisdom in utilizing the House for goodness' sake.
Armed with a meditation bell, interfaith prayers and clean drinking water, we brought a bit more peace to the land of
nuclear violence in April. Our four opponents supporting the Lab didn't share our view of simplicity, make any gesture to stop the
international crimes happening across the street, or accept our invitation to pray with us. Instead, they called the local police who
interrupted our prayer-action while failing to arrest the perpetrators of international violence. We continued the vigil throughout
the night in a jail cell. Three more abolitionists resumed the outdoor vigil during the next morning. And more people who had
not yet held vigils for peace at LANL joined us the next month. It's easy to embrace the cultural ideology known as “more is
better” when the increase is in those characteristics of God's kindom—antidotes to the toxic effects of industrialism, racism,
nuclearism, militarism, and other domination systems. Our world desperately needs more people taking initiative to care about
each other, helping our collective future get back in harmony with the nature God made for all creatures.
For information on the upcoming trial and other monthly vigils at LANL, see: tna.Lovarchy.org
Trinity House Catholic Worker Ingredients
Moving Toward a Definition of our House Charism as We Approach our Third Anniversary
1.EMPOWERED VOLUNTEERS and a “circle of friends” from the community offering external support.
2.AN APPROACH to social change that combines service to the most needy folks and resistance to systemic violence and
3.DEVOTION TO HOSPITALITY, putting Guests first when it comes to food, shelter, health care, etc. Love is defined as “an
act of will”, requiring inner strength, but not necessarily affectionate feelings.
4.COMMITMENT to environ-mental sustainability and interpersonal relationship sustainability, in conflict with the dominant
Desire to be egalitarian and decentralized, using consensus to make decisions,
Lift each other up (this includes a willingness to change);
Recognize abundance—balancing their work with play;
Have generously well-grounded, Light-hearted spirits
6.COMMUNAL PRAYER, spiritual discipline, contemplation, and the ability to offer discipleship oppor-tunities.
7.AFFINITY for Catholic culture and Christian anarchism, and commitment to the Aims and Means of the Catholic Worker
8.PROPERTY that is owned collectively, well-maintained, and managed autonomously by the Catholic Workers, who hold it in
trust for the community.
9.A FAMILY OF WORKERS who are able to conduct the work of the house and handle the chaos that sometimes comes with it.
10. SHARING Community mindfulness means that we share resources and emotional intimacy within the house. We honor each
other's distinct gifts as well as the idea of the community as a whole. We also have faith in a generous Creator, which allows us to
freely give things away, trusting that more will come back. Love replaces fear and enables precarity to be a reliable basis of
TO KEEP THE FUNNEL FLOWING
by Marcus Patrick Blaise Page
How can a follower of Jesus Christ justify oppression, property ownership, military service, or using money belonging to the
empire? Unlike the homeless Jesus who said, “the Son of Man has no place to lay his head,” so many of us Christians hold on to
buildings, and Trinity House Catholic Worker actually “owns” the property where the house is located. As part of the 75-year old
Catholic, pacifist, anarchist move-ment, we are based in Christ's revolutionary love and are therefore dedicated to making peace
and justice. As such, we regularly wrestle with the legal implications of ownership.
One way we maintain our commitment to the way of Jesus while paradoxically having a place to lay our heads each night is by
seeking a healthy understanding of the purpose of the 8-bedroom building in Albuquerque's South Valley. This Trinity House can
be described as:
* A house of hospitality
* A resistance to domination
* A funnel of love
All three are common-sense in the Catholic Worker movement. In a successful month, when we are lucky, we can live up to
those three monikers.
The first one is obvious. It means that the house is NOT ours, but we merely use it for Love's sake by creating warmth, ensuring
respite, offering hospitality to the spiritual-ly, physically and emotionally homeless.
The second one emanates from the first one—this house is a base from which volunteers are able to gather and work against
horrifying priorities and unethical social structures that are endemic in our state's nuclearism and our nation's militarism. Our
monthly Round-tables, vegetarian potlucks, regular witness against the violence of Los Alamos & Sandia labs, and the Free Lunch
Sundays are prime examples of attempts to subvert the system of domination.
And Trinity House as a Funnel? That may be the most appropriate use of a Christian house—it's just a building through which
little bits of personal property flow into the hands of other persons. Much of what flows through the Catholic Worker funnel is
food! We collect from health food stores, we redistribute directly, and we transform some of it into meals before it leaves the
From April to August of this year, several neighbors downtown have been making life more difficult for other residents, some of
whom already have no place to lay their heads. The same neighbors have been slandering Trinity House's health food standards
in a fear-based attempt to remove harmless homeless people along with harmful criminals from downtown public spaces. In
response to the opposition, Chelsea and I decided that we should move to a park that met the concerns of the middle-class,
housed, neighbors as well as the needs of the hungry folks. On July 29th, we began sharing the community picnic at Soldiers and
Sailors Park. Trinity House volunteers will keep the funnel flowing into this tiny park as long as exploitation and poverty create
inequities for people in Albuquerque.
FRIENDLY FACES BEHIND FREE FOOD
By Chelsea Valerie Catherine Collonge
There are currently more than 20 people volunteering every week to keep the wheels spinning on Trinity
House's grocery distribution. This month we'd like to introduce you to five free spirits who are central to the operation. They are
Cliff, Mollie, Maria, David & Alfonso...
Cliff and Mollie Wilkie
Saturday Grocery Distribution
at the Peace and Justice Center
Cliff started helping with Sunday free lunches around the time they began in 2005. He then took on the bread and groceries
collection which Marcus had been gathering. At that time, those Whole Foods donations were the main food source for Trinity
House. Maria Santelli got the idea that people would come to the Peace and Justice Center (P&J) for free groceries on Saturday
mornings, which would also save Cliff 10 miles of driving per Saturday by not bringing all the surplus to Trinity House.
Cliff's spouse Mollie started helping with the P&J distribution. Together they drive about 75-100 miles per week in
their redistribution duties. They stop at parks to just give food away and also have many designated places to distribute. Cliff says,
“It's Mollie's thing now.” She got interested in Desert Harvest, which coordinates Albuquerque's food redistribution in a
decentralized networking way. Mollie also volunteers for extra pickups from other stores and on holiday weekends.
Mollie stresses, “Other people always want to help. It's a community thing. People get together to see each other
and get free food - a real community experience!” The Catholic Workers want to thank the Wilkies and other volunteers at the
P&J scene—including Jonathan, Jill, Johnnie, Linda, Miguel, Suzanne, Maureen, Vin, Lee, Ann, Willow, Roy & France. Folks
who come to get the free groceries also donate money, which has gone to Heifer International to help stop hunger in other
Cliff adds, “We have met so many nice and generous people. People at the stores are happy—saying, 'we don't have to
throw it away'. There's a lot of waste and economic disparity. Rather than getting negative, you try to find some things to do, to go
against the trends we don't like in our society. An opportunity to take food where it will be used is such an obviously worthwhile
thing to do.”
Maria Santelli and David Lopez
Sunday Grocery Distribution
at Holy Family Church
In 2006, another health food store opened up, and Cliff and Maria took the 15 shopping carts full of donated food to Holy
Family Church on a Sunday morning for the parishioners to receive free groceries after Mass. Maria worked with members of the
church community to help make it a regular thing. “I like it because it breaks down the myth of scarcity—there IS enough food in
our society; it's a distribution issue,” Maria says. “It's also nice to do direct service, where you actually see the results.”
David adds, “The people at the church share, take what they need and leave the rest for other people to get what
they need. The bonus I get from it is the JOY you see in the people.”
Trinity's Sunday “Satellite” food distribution and First Day Coffee
Every Sunday, Alfonso, some volunteers and other helpers from Casa de las Communidades wash and sort hundreds of
pounds of fruit and take a portion of it to a spot downtown where homeless folks gather waiting for their afternoon meal. This
initiative came about when police forced Trinity House to . leave Robinson Park last
summer. As a result of this relocation four blocks away we lost many of our guests.
Last winter, Alfonso heard from several of his employees who were staying in the city's winter shelter that they were
being dropped off in the cold at 5:30 am. He immediately began providing hot coffee and pastries every Sunday, using the Trinity
House kitchen (before other volunteers use it to cook the free lunch). Concerning his motivation, Alfonso says, “These folks are
in our community and we are our brother's keeper. For if we do good to the least of these we do it to Him. It is normal Christian
culture to do these things."
Freedom From Domestication
by Derek Minno-Bloom
By Marcus Pegasus
Nuclear radiation is “poison fire” because it is toxic and hot. Nuclear abolitionists seek to end the human practice of nuclear technologies—-the playing with poison fire in weapons and power plants. These industries have trashed the environ-ment with mining and waste dis-posal that can harm living creatures for thousands of years to come!
If we care about our children, nieces, nephews, and other humans at-risk from exposure, we must solve this problem. Caring enough means we must abolish nuclear weapons and power plants.
I embrace the masculine principle of fatherhood: the fiery activity of untamed external creativity and ongoing daily protection of offspring. The meaning of Fathers Day, therefore, can be upheld even by men who do not have children. Sacred, secular, and physical realities converged this year when Fathers Day fell on the same day as Holy Trinity Sunday, within hours of the Summer Solstice. That day we celebrated the inner community of God (Parent, Son, and Spirit). The next day we celebrated Brother Sun—a masculine entity—perfectly balanced 93 million miles away. His nuclear energy is the only safe nuclear power for earth. Capturing the Sun's power and putting it on earth is a perverted over-indulgent exploitation of nature, risking the health and lives of unconsenting innocents.
That Sunday and Monday Trinity Nuclear Abolition held prayer at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) because LANL puts billions of people at risk by continuing to manufacture pluto-nium pits (the cores of nuclear bombs). Veterans for Peace, and Pax Christi friends joined the retreat. Our focus was LANL's plutonium pit facilities (the CMR/CMRR sites).
LANL refused to allow prayer at the CMRR site which is still under construction. Two great-grandpar-ents, a grand-father, a mother of three, and I (a “father” of Trinity House) were willing to go the extra mile at the end our formal vigil on Monday. On the way to the CMRR site, the five of us were separated from two dozen others and arrested.
LANL’s dedication to poison fire production requires an equal and opposite reaction of holy fire in our spirits to stop the nuclear insanity. A week after Fathers' Day the largest wildfire ever in New Mexico's history began to burn West of Los Alamos. The holy fire that we spawned on Fathers Day was less harmful but just as powerful, a prayer-ful action to disarm our country's nuclear arsenal. Our prayers inclu-ded the song calling “the holy fire: dwell with us and inspire!” For us, fire is a metaphor for the masculine energy needed to quickly stop nuclearism. We believed the fathers of the bomb were with us in spirit, wanting to put out the poison fire at the place where they invented it.
Three days after a couple of my co-defendants (Bobbie Sue Davis and Juan Montoya) were arraigned in the Magistrate Court of Los Alamos, the wild fire ignited and headed toward Los Alamos, shutting down the town and the lab for a week. One thousand fire-fighters fought the blazes trying to strike LANL.
Tewa folks from the nearby tribal pueblos pitched in to help protect the lab from burning, but no such protection was offered for their sacred homelands. Three pueblos were devastated by this fire, and some predict that the flora from these 156,000 acres burned won't be coming back for hundreds or thou-sands of years. One pueblo spokes-woman said it best: “We've lost our everything.” Their watershed has been destroyed, and the toxic ash of LANL's irradiated flora is entering the Rio Grande, which is a source of drinking water downstream.
Technology and personal energy have been dedicated to protecting homes and land. This natural disaster's terrible cost would have been worse if the people had not sacrificed everything to put it out. Why don't we use our power to support affected communities—especially the local Native American communities? Future acts of Mother Nature will continue to confound human nuclear ingenuity, spreading poison fire beyond its containment vessels. Brother Wildfire took a stab at the lab, but Uncle Earthquake, Auntie Volcano and Sister Water are waiting their turns to stop the human-made disasters of Los Ala-mos. Wildfire tells us to protect the planet from Los Alamos' poison fire.
Why did LANL employees return to their jobs of making more toxic trouble as soon as it seemed “safe” to go back, when the most important work is to clean up the poison fire of LANL? We know the holy fire can dwell with us and inspire. Even those of us who don't procreate have parental responsibilities, social, spiritual, and environmental. For Christ's sake, for the sake of your great-grandchildren and for your enemies, disarm Los Alamos!
“...become blameless and harmless, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine like heavenly fires on earth” (Phil 2:15)
WHAT WAS SHARED. WHAT WAS GIVEN. WHAT WAS GAINED
By Bobbie Sue "Dreka" Davis
The month of October at Trinity House has been quite adventurous and full of happenings. Among the usual activities, the 7th through the 9th of the month was the National Catholic Worker gathering in Las Vegas, Nevada. It was hosted by none-other-than the Las Vegas Catholic Worker, whose hospitality and hard work was greatly appreciated by all as they provided us with meals, drinks, and a lot of wonderful memories. The gathering was 200 people from various states, houses, and walks of life, and each day was exciting with several workshops to choose from, including but not limited to: living in community, spiritual growth, gender and sexuality, and having children in the movement. This wisdom shared was tremendously helpful and useful. Aside from such beautiful collaborations, the people I met there were my favorite part of the whole thing. Furthermore, those three days further showed me that this movement is right where I need to be.
For those of you who don't know me, my name is Bobbie Sue “Dreka T. Yoni” Davis, but I go by Bobbie or Dreka. I came to Trinity House almost a year ago, homeless, jobless, well, pretty much as “-less” as you can get, save for my will and drive. When I met Marcus on a Wednesday at nine in the morning, I didn't know what to think and I am sure they didn't either. Chelsea & Marcus offered me a room and I offered my time. That day, I started helping with hospitality and getting to know the guests. My mind held the ordinary stereotypes about homeless people—although I didn't recognize my own homeless situation—but I quickly had a change of heart and threw away all of the ridiculous notions people had provided for me over the years. I came to see that there is far more heart and gut in these people than the mainstream society acknowledges, treating such folks as if they matter not. After a few months, I started to feel this pull to the movement. Not merely curiosity, but a burning desire to do more and live just this kind of Catholic Worker life, as difficult as it may be sometimes. The more I was involved, the more I loved our guests, our community, and everything about the movement.
Being a mother of three amazing children, who live with their “Nana” currently, I was a bit skeptical about raising kids in the movement. However, the more I read about kids in Catholic Worker communities, talking to people about it, and doing some in depth soul searching, I realized that it was certainly possible to have a great life with kids in the movement. Accepting this truth, I was locked in. I know this is where I need to do my life's work. I live my life to serve God and God's children, ALL God's children. The movement, for me, is an expressway to fulfilling what the Lord needs me to be doing. Every trial and hard time has led me to where God needed me to be. I can say this, I wouldn't have it any other way.
After the gathering, on the 18th of October to be exact, was the “LANL Father's Day 5” pre-trial at the Magistrate Court in Los Alamos, New Mexico. Since the pretrial was scheduled for nine in the morning, the “5” held another vigil from seven to eight. As always, the non-violent, prayerful, peaceful vigil got supportive and not-so-supportive feedback from motorists.
Mysteriously on this morning, the positive feedback was greater than the latter. We arrived at court, after a quick breakfast and chat, unsure of what to expect (on my end at least). After a few times of having to leave the courtroom for the defendants and prosecution (the Los Alamos Police Department) to talk, we came to a bargain. We accepted a plea of “Nolo Contendre”, 90 days deferment (equivalent to 90 days unsupervised probation) for Los Alamos County, and paying court costs. Once reaching this bargain, I must admit, my conscience took a beating.
However, I have to remember what my dear friend, Will (one of the “5”), told me, “We live to fight another day”. We “5” aren't sure whether or not paying court costs is beneficial to the movement and are contemplating the consequences of not paying. Judge Casados made it clear if we weren't to pay we could face four days in jail or community service. No matter what path is chosen, there is little to no doubt that we will keep trying to do what is morally and spiritually right. The CMRR Site at LANL is a hazard to humanity and Mother Earth in proportions that are astounding to fathom. If, instead, we used those billion dollar resources on proper clean-up and restoration of the land that rightfully belongs to the Tewa people, then some justice will have been served. It is our moral, ethical, spiritual, and LEGAL responsibility to stop crimes against humanity and other actions that are conflicting with our Constitutional rights, the Non-Pro-liferation Treaty, the Nuremburg Charter, and most importantly, our dear Father's Law. That is what we “5” were trying to do that day. So, here's the question:
Why are we the criminals?
Spring/Lent/Easter 2012 is Volume 8, Number 1: whole thing here