This book invites us to explore the beauty within us and around us and the possibilities and potential of the transforming power of God, of friends and relations, of the poor, of society, of nature and the earth, at work in each of us if we are attentive to it. It is about relationship and the intimate interplay between our relationships with ourselves (who we are and how we relate to who we are), our relationships with people around us (how we relate to our families, colleagues at work and out of work), our relationship with society (how we relate to and perceive society, its structures and instruments, political, economic and social), our relationship with the earth (our concern for our environment), and our relationship with God (how we relate to our God, the God of our hearts, the God of our lives).
Sr. Stan is a well known social activist, campaigner and founder of a number of voluntary organisations including Focus Ireland, the Immigrant Council of Ireland and the Young Social Innovators . In 1998 she founded the Sanctuary, a meditation centre in the heart of Dublin city (www.sanctuary.ie). The vision of the Sanctuary is - to be..STILLNESS..in the world. The Sanctuary believes that everyone - the child, the teenager, the adult - can access this place of stillness within themselves and that once it is part of their consciousness, its potential for their well-being and the well-being of society is huge.
Sister Stan Kennedy
Sr. Stanislaus Kennedy, or Sr. Stan as she is affectionately known, is a visionary and social innovator and a member of the congregation of Religious Sisters of Charity since 1958. At eighteen years of age Sr. Stan, then Treasa Kennedy, decided to become a nun. Following in the footsteps of Mary Aikenhead she too was drawn to work on behalf of the poor in the towns and cities of Ireland, from stories she had heard and read about whilst growing up in the townland of Lispole in Dingle, Co. Kerry.In the 1960Ã¢â‚¬â„¢s Sr Stan was missioned to Kilkenny to work alongside Bishop Peter Birch in developing Kilkenny Social Services. For nineteen years Peter Birch was both guide and mentor to Sr. Stan as the Kilkenny social services developed into an innovative, comprehensive model of community care becoming a blue-print for the rest of Ireland. In 1974 the Irish Government appointed Sr Stan as the first chair of what is now the Combat Poverty Agency, and in 1985 the European Commission appointed her as trans-national co-ordinator in the European rural anti poverty programme working right across Europe. From the small townland of Lispole Sr StanÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s desire to create a more equal society was moving further afield. Moving to Dublin in the early 1980Ã¢â‚¬â„¢s Sr Stan tackled one of IrelandÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s most neglected social inequalities Ã¢â‚¬â€œ homelessness. In 1985 Sr Stan established Focus Point which is now Focus Ireland, the biggest national, voluntary organisation helping people to find, create and maintain a home.In 2000 Sr Stan founded the Sanctuary, a meditation/spirituality centre in the heart of Dublin city, a place where people can find a quiet space and time for themselves to explore and develop their inner world and wisdom. In 2001 Sr Stan established Social Innovations Ireland (SII) out of which has grown two new initiatives, the Immigrant Council of Ireland (ICI), an independent national organisation working to promote the rights of immigrants through information, advocacy and legal aid and the Young Social Innovators of the Year (YSI), a national showcase providing an opportunity for transition year students to become involved in social issues. Sr Stanislaus has received numerous awards and tributes for her outstanding work for the marginalized in society and some of those are as follows: 1981 Ã¢â‚¬ËœKerry Person of the YearÃ¢â‚¬â„¢
1982 Honorary Doctorate in Law from Trinity College Dublin
1993 University of New York Special Honour for commitment to the disadvantaged in Ireland
1996 The Lord Mayor of DublinÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Award
2003 Honorary Doctorate in Law from the National University of Ireland
2004 Meteor Awards prestigious Ã¢â‚¬ËœHumanitarian of the YearÃ¢â‚¬â„¢
2005 Honorary Degree of Doctor of the Open University