Mission Statement:Nuns Against Gun Violence is a coalition of Catholic Sisters and their allies that affirms the value of human life through prayer, education, and advocacy for common sense, evidence-based, gun violence prevention.
Nuns Against Gun Violence was founded in April 2023 to bring together congregations of Catholic sisters to speak with a united voice against the crisis of gun violence. Along with over 60 other communities, Mercy has been involved in building this collaborative which meets bi-weekly to share resources and events and plan advocacy efforts.
“The Sisters of Mercy of the Americas are outraged and saddened by the loss of nine lives and injuries to seven more in Allen, Texas. We offer our deepest sympathies and prayers for the families and victims of the mass shooting and to the community whose lives have been shaken by this horrible act. And we urgently and relentlessly add our voices to those saying it has been too long and our gun laws must change.” – May 9, 2023 following the mass shooting in Allen, Texas.
Read all of the Sisters of Mercy recent statements calling for action to end gun violence:
Each year, Mercy students are invited to enter our Social Justice Video Contest and put their creative ideas and skills to work by sharing stories of the Sisters of Mercy’s Critical Concerns. One of the topics for the 2023 contest was gun violence. Here are some of the top entries.
“Are you with us?” was one of two entries to share first prize. The video chronicles what it might be like to be caught in a school shooting and to deal with the aftermath.
2023’s Honorable Mentions
In these videos that also received recognition, students continue to explore the theme of gun violence as it is present in their communities in the United States.
Ava Kolp, Katelyn McGuire, Jamie O’Donnell “Together We Can End Gun Violence” Gwynedd Mercy Academy High School, Gwynedd Valley, Pennsylvania
Ana Sophia Butkus “Life Is Not A Game” Mercy High School, Middletown, Connecticut
Shannon Talley, Maggie Baker, Alivia Chieffo “Stop the Violence“ Gwynedd Mercy Academy High School, Gwynedd Valley, Pennsylvania
Gracie Gavin, Maxine Schaffner “Welcome to the Gun Zone” Mercy High School Burlingame California
“Delivering for people on economic issues is an important goal in itself, but it is not an antivenom for the snakebite of authoritarianism.”
From “The Death of ‘Deliverism’”
They note that progressive economic policymaking must:
take identity, emotion, and story seriously. Policies that deliver economic benefits but do not speak to a social identity are likely to have little political impact.
offer ideas about issues they have tended to neglect such as violence, addiction, mental health problems, social isolation, loneliness, and a sense of social disintegration.
articulate not just a string of worthy policies, but a vision of a good life grounded in ideas about how we should live, who we should care about, and what makes for a meaningful life.
reinvigorate organizing and recruitment of new people into worker and community organizations. People are often mobilized on issues but are rarely invited to be part of a democratic community built on relationships that forge collective power.
Deepak Bhargava is a senior fellow at the Roosevelt Institute and a Distinguished Lecturer at the CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies. Shahrzad Shams is the program manager for the Race and Democracy program at the Roosevelt Institute. Harry Hanbury is a documentary filmmaker and journalist.
On September 24, we will celebrate the 195th anniversary of the day Catherine McAuley opened the doors of the House of Mercy on Baggot Street. This began her ministry of serving the poor, the sick, and those in need of education. Today we Celebrate Mercy in Justice with two reflections from two Sisters of Mercy!
The Mercy Justice Team needs you, a Mercy student, to create a short, social media style PSA (public service announcement) video – think Reels or TikTok – that reflects the Sisters of Mercy’s Critical Concerns. Put those creative ideas and video skills to work and you could win $500!
What form of injustice makes your nostrils flare every time it’s mentioned in the news?
Who do you know who’s been impacted by gun violence?
What story is yours to tell about the need for Mercy?
How do we challenge injustices in our society?
To receive information, updates and reminders about this year’s contest, complete this form and we’ll be in touch. Click here to learn rules for entry and how to upload your video.
For this year’s contest we are seeking short, PSA style videos (30 to 90 seconds) that are suitable for sharing on social media platforms such as TikTok or Reels. Video entries must focus on one of these topics:
Videos should reflect the Mercy Critical Concerns, especially the Critical Concern for Nonviolence, but do not need to identify the Critical Concerns specifically.
Videos should inspire action to address gun violence.
Advocating for Justice
Videos should reflect the spirit of the Sisters of Mercy efforts to advocate on behalf of social justice issues.
Videos should inspire further advocacy.
Videos should seek to make the idea of advocating for justice more accessible to people of all ages by explaining why is it important or showing what it looks like.
NEW! Watch our 20 minute webinar
to learn more about this year’s contest.
Who Can Enter
Any student or group of students, high school age or older, enrolled in Mercy high schools, colleges/universities, or involved in a Mercy-affiliated ministry.
Use this tip-sheet to help you as you begin the process of creating your video.
1. Title. Each video must have a title. The title must be indicated on the submission form. The title does not need to be included in the video itself.
2. Credits. Credits must include the name of those involved in the creation of the video. The credits must also include citations for any images, audio, or text used in the video that is not original. The credits do not need to be included in the video itself, but must be included in the submission form.
The Sisters of Mercy may delete title and credit screens before posting videos on social media.
Entrants are strongly encouraged to use original footage and graphics as much as possible.
Important Note on Rules: In order to honor copyright protections, rules regarding use of images and music were updated for the 2022 contest and remain in effect for 2023. See the complete rules for details.
All entries must be received by April 1, 2023.
A panel of judges will use these criteria to select the winning video. Individual winners will receive financial awards. The Grand Prize Winner receives $500.
Winning entries may be featured on the Sisters of Mercy Institute web site and social media channels. Winners and their winning institution will be formally announced.
If you think you might be interested in entering this contest, fill out this form to receive contest information and updates.