This week, going to the Wellness Symposium: Spirituality, Social Justice and Disability was a very interesting experience. Going into the conference, I was glad that we had read the assigned articles because I felt that I already knew the background and was familiar with the study on Catholic Workers in Los Angeles. It was very interesting to see how it was presented and the other aspects that Jim drew from his research.
Although the three presenters that we saw all worked in somewhat different fields, there was still a sense of overlap between all of them. Between the presentation on mental health awareness and the creation of the Vibe festival, Jim’s work on social justice and the Catholic Workers, and the last presentation on social justice and aspects that contribute to it, they all played very well into one another, despite what I initially thought. What I took away from the panel we attended at the conference was that there must be active thought that goes into actions or activities in the pursuit of social justice. It is not the size of the actions, but the dedication on the part of those who are giving.
If one were to take elements from all three presentations; the thought and effort that was put into such an event like Vibe that acknowledges issues of mental health awareness, the selflessness and dedication of the Los Angeles Catholic Workers, and the four elements of social justice and spiritual freedom from the third presentation, then they can form a cohesive whole.