By Mary Ellen Lacy
Have you ever had one of those experiences when you hear a song and you just can’t get it out of your head? You find yourself singing it aloud. OMG! STOP! Soon, you will do almost anything to get it out of your head. Last week, as Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas” seared my brain, I considered how easy it is to get people absorbed with a catchy tune.
Suddenly, I flashed on my friend Sal’s gift. Sr. Sally died a few weeks ago. Before she passed, she bequeathed me a wooden bell. Engraved upon the bell is the phrase: No one listens to the sound of a wooden bell or the cries of the Poor.
I wondered why a meaningless tune can get stuck in our minds while the suffering cries of the Poor go unheard. It occurred to me that most songs have promoters and are constantly played on the radio. You cannot get away from them. However, by themselves, the sound of a wooden bell or the cries of the Poor are not catchy enough to capture the world’s attention.
As the future of charity, I say, let’s sing. Let’s wake up the world to the cries of the Poor! Let’s promote the desperate songs of poverty, hunger and homelessness so that these songs get stuck in people’s heads and hearts. Let’s replay the songs until people own their brother’s suffering and cry OMG ! STOP! and become willing to sacrifice to put an end to the songs of the Poor. It’s not about that bass; it’s about dignity and justice for God’s most vulnerable. So clap your hands if you feel like everyone should have a roof!
This Advent season, let’s wake up the world to the caroling of the wooden bells!
Name: Sr. Mary Ellen Lacy, J.D.
Congregation: Daughters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul
Stage in vows: Have been in final vows under ten years
Hometown: Chicago Illinois
Current ministry: Attorney for Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation and Immigration Rights/Social Justice Activist