December 10—This day marks the culmination of a year-long celebration in the 70th anniversary of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights on December 10, 1948. This document powerfully declared that all persons, by virtue of their inherent human dignity, have certain rights and freedoms, including a right to education, a decent living, health care and a right to live free from any form of discrimination. This declaration of human rights was built on what were recognized as universal human values, to be honored by all nations.  Although we are still far from realizing the ideals set forth in this declaration, it still stands as a beacon guiding all nations towards peace with justice based on its principles.  The very existence of this document calls all of us to strive for its fulfillment.  It also demands that we constantly re-examine ourselves and our national and international structures and priorities to see how to move forward in a way that better embodies the hopes and aspirations expressed therein.

We pray for all people of the world.  May all of us respect and support one another, realizing that we are all brothers and sisters.  Help us to honor and safeguard the dignity and freedom of every person.  May we work every day to protect and cherish the rights and freedoms that we have and that all of us desire.  Give us the insight and wisdom to move forward each day on the path of peace with justice. (Shared by Sr. Beatrice Hernandez).