Hundreds of supporters were on hand to welcome home the Nuns on the Bus on Monday at the United Methodist Building in Washington, D.C. The sisters completed their nine-state, two-week journey for faith, family, and fairness in the federal budget.
"Some Catholic politicians are pushing budget cuts that violate Catholic social teaching," said Sister Simone Campbell, executive director for the Catholic lobbying group NETWORK. "And they jeopardize the Catholic sisters' effort to really help struggling families, to practice the values of the Gospel by serving the poor and vulnerable."
The sisters hit key legislative offices along the route, most notably the Wisconsin office of Rep. Paul Ryan, author of the GOP's budget plan. They also visited ministries and social programs along the way and heard stories of success and life change.
"Responsible programs enable its recipients to discover the light within them, to potentiate it, and then to accept the responsibility to share it. These programs cannot, must not, be defunded," said Sister Mary Ellen Lacy, a Daughter of Charity and lobbyist for NETWORK.
Ryan's budget would cut many safety net programs. Catholic leaders in April called said Ryan was distorting Catholic teaching, saying the budget is, "morally indefensible and betrays Catholic principles of solidarity, just taxation and a commitment to the common good."
Campbell echoed the sentiment Monday, saying, "Catholic sisters' commitment to justice, charity, human dignity should be an inspiration and a model to all of us, not just nuns, and especially our political leaders across the street."
Sandi Villarreal is Associate Web Editor for Sojourners.