Sr. Sharon on Nobel Prize Committee

Sr. Sharon Zayac, Executive Director of Jubilee Farm, has been appointed to an international committee promoting the candidacy of President Anote Ton of Kiribati for the Nobel Peace Prize.  The Committee to Promote the Candidacy of Anote Tong for the Nobel Peace Prize is comprised of “prominent individuals drawn from the international community with diverse commitments to social justice, north-south equity and human rights.”*

President Tong is serving his third and final term as leader of Kiribati, a small island nation, which is one of many imminently threatened by the effects of global climate change.  During his tenure, President Tong has led efforts to draw international attention to global climate change and to convey the urgent need for action.

“President Tong has demonstrated the worthiness of this Nobel Peace Prize candidature by taking every opportunity to create a new understanding of global warming within industrialised nations – thereby playing a significant and constructive role in meeting the challenges of climate change on the world stage. He has joined with other leaders of small island states to lobby for the United Nations to address climate change as a threat to the security of the world’s people.  He has shown himself a builder of peace and reconciliation by continually striving to strengthen cooperation between nations, and by encouraging dialogue at international forums. Most importantly, he is internationally recognized as an advocate on the effects of climate change on the most vulnerable.  He is a peace-builder, worthy of international acclamation.”*

You may learn more about President Tong and the Nobel Peace Prize campaign AND voice your support on this website:


To support this nomination, complete the “Thought Towards a Better Planet” form at the bottom of the main page of the website.  A press release concerning the formation of the Committee appears on the main page of the website.


Congratulations, Sister Sharon!

14 Resolutions for 2014

14 food resolutions for 2014 from Food Tank. (

As we enter 2014, there are still nearly one billion people suffering from hunger. Simultaneously, 65 percent of the world’s population live in countries where obesity kills more people than those who are underweight. But these are problems that we can solve and there’s a lot to be done in the new year!

The issue of food loss and food waste is gaining ground thanks to the U.N.’s Zero Hunger Challenge, which calls for zero food waste, as well as the good work of many organizations including the Natural Resources Defense Council, Feeding the 5000, the U.N. Environment Programme, and who are showing eaters, businesses, and policy-makers solutions for ending waste in the food system.

Together we can find solutions to nourish both people and the planet!

Here are 14 food resolutions for 2014:

1. Meet Your Local Farmer
Know your farmer, know your food aims to strengthen local and regional food systems. Meeting your local farmer puts a face to where your food comes from and creates a connection between farmers and consumers.

2. Eat Seasonal Produce
By purchasing local foods that are in season, you can help reduce the environmental impact of shipping food. And your money goes straight to the farmer, supporting the local economy.

3. End Food Waste
More than 1.3 billion tons of edible food is wasted each year. Tips to reduce waste include planning meals ahead, buying ‘ugly’’ fruits and vegetables, being more creative with recipes, requesting smaller portions, composting, and donating excess food.

4. Promote a Healthy Lifestyle
Many diseases are preventable, including obesity, yet 1.5 billion people in the world are obese or overweight. Promote a culture of prevention by engaging in physical activity and following guidelines for a healthy diet.
5. Commit to Resilience in Agriculture
A large portion of food production is used for animal feed and biofuels–at least one-third of global food production is used to feed livestock. And land grabs are resulting in food insecurity, the displacement of small farmers, conflict, environmental devastation, and water loss. Strengthening farmers’ unions and cooperatives can help farmers be more resilient to food prices shocks, climate change, conflict, and other problems.

6. Eat (and Cook) Indigenous Crops
Mungbean, cow pea, spider plant…these indigenous crops might sound unfamiliar, but they are grown by small-holder farmers in countries all over the world. The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) reports that approximately 75 percent of the Earth’s genetic resources are now extinct, and another third of plant biodiversity is predicted to disappear by the year 2050. We need to promote diversity in our fields and in our diets!

7. Buy (or Grow) Organic
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has found that at least one pesticide is in 67 percent of produce samples in the U.S. Studies suggest that pesticides can interfere with brain development in children and can harm wildlife, including bees. Growing and eating organic and environmentally sustainable produce we can help protect our bodies and natural resources.

8. Go Meatless Once a Week
To produce one pound of beef can require 1,799 gallons of water and one pound of pork can require 576 gallons of water. Beef, pork, and other meats have large water footprints and are resource intensive. Consider reducing your “hoofprint” by decreasing the amount and types of meat you consume.

9. Cook
In Michael Pollan’s book “Cooked,” he learns how the four elements-fire, water, air, and earth-transform parts of nature into delicious meals. And he finds that the art of cooking connects both nature and culture. Eaters can take back control of the food system by cooking more and, in the process, strengthen relationships and eat more nutritious–and delicious–foods.

10. Host a Dinner Party
It’s doesn’t have to be fancy, just bring people together! Talk about food, enjoy a meal, and encourage discussion around creating a better food system. Traveling in 2014 and craving a homemade meal? For another option try Meal Sharing and eat with people from around the world.

11. Consider the ‘True Cost’ Of Your Food
Based on the price alone, inexpensive junk food often wins over local or organic foods. But, the price tag doesn’t tell the whole story. True cost accounting allows farmers, eaters, businesses, and policy makers to understand the cost of all of the “ingredients” that go into making fast food–including antibiotics, artificial fertilizers, transportation, and a whole range of other factors that don’t show up in the price tag of the food we eat.

12. Democratize Innovation
Around the world, farmers, scientists, researchers, women, youth, NGOs, and others are currently creating innovative, on-the-ground solutions to various, interconnected global agriculture problems. Their work has the great potential to be significantly scaled up, broadened, and deepened—and we need to create an opportunity for these projects to get the attention, resources, research, and the investment they need.

13. Support Family Farmers
The U.N. FAO has declared 2014 the International Year of Family Farming, honoring the more than 400 million family farms in both industrialized and developing countries, defined as farms who rely primarily on family members for labor and management. Family farmers are key players in job creation and healthy economies, supplying jobs to millions and boosting local markets, while also protecting natural resources.

14. Share Knowledge Across Generations
Older people have challenges–and opportunities–in accessing healthy foods. They’re sharing their knowledge with younger generations by teaching them about gardening and farming, food culture, and traditional cuisines. It’s also important to make sure that older people are getting the nutrition they need to stay active and healthy for as long as possible.




Buy Fresh Buy Local


More and more of us are understanding the planet-health and human-health benefits of eating organic foods.  As important as this is on many levels, it is perhaps even more important for us to purchase foods grown or raised locally.  Even if your local farmer does not use all organic methods, he or she often uses fewer chemicals and certainly far less fossil fuel to transport the produce to the local market.  Buying local has many other benefits as well.  It supports your local farmer and keeps your money in the local economy, rather than sending it off to profit large corporations in far off states or countries.

As a member of the Illinois Stewardship Alliance, Jubilee Farm has also chosen to participate in the Buy Fresh Buy Local (BFBL) program.

The distinctive logo announces that we are part of a local foods’ campaign to encourage the community to support local farmers.  This local foods effort includes everyone from individual consumers to restaurants and grocery stores. Through the BFBL campaign’s marketing materials, consumers can identify locally produced foods and area farmers can reach new local markets.

Remember to look for BFBL signage and tell your retailer or restaurant that you care where your food comes from.

Climate Change: No Denying It

Washington_IL_photo_by Alexandra Sutter from WMBD
Washington, IL tornado aftermath photo by Alexandra Sutter from WMBD

Here is an excerpt from Climate Change: No Denying It written by Sister Sharon Zayac, OP the Director of Jubilee Farm. To read the whole article click here or click on the image below.


Social Analysis

A new study looking at 11,000 years
of climate temperatures shows the
world is in the middle of a dramatic
U-turn, lurching from near record cooling
to an unprecedented heat spike in the
20th century. (Union of Concerned Scientists,
Every one of the past 35 years has been
warmer than the 20th century average.
The 12 warmest years on record have all
occurred since 1998. 2012 was the hottest
year ever recorded for the contiguous
United States.

The principal driver of long-term
warming is the total emissions of CO2.
At current rates, CO2 emissions will
hurtle us past a planetary climate rise of
2 degrees Celsius in less than 50 years,
conservatively assuming that emissions
rates do not continue on their current
upward trajectory of approximately 3%
per year.

Climate change is not a new reality.
The long-predicted dramatic effects we
are experiencing have been building
for years and are now literally in our
faces as we, even in our country, endure
floods, fires, dust storms, droughts, E-5
tornadoes, massive blizzards, melting
glaciers, ocean level rise, the expansion
of disease vectors, and off-the-scale
pollen counts. In the words of Martin
Luther King, “We are living in the fierce
urgency of now.”

Christmas Pottery Sale


The Christmas Pottery sale continues this week from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM this weekend (Dec. 7-8) and next weekend (Dec. 14-15).

Sister Mary Fran, OP has done spectacular pottery this year including Christmas items, Fall items, large and small bowls, dragons, beautiful boxes and many more items for all members of your family and friends.

We have a “Door Prize” to be given away at the end of the sales. The Drawing will take place December 15 at noon.   No need to be there for the drawing.  We just need your name and telephone number to contact you if you won.

Please encourage your family, friends and everyone in your parish to take advantage of this sale and to come and take a peek.  The Jubilee Farm barn is decorated for Christmas and it is warmed by a powerful heater.  Hot Cocoa and Tea will be available while you shop around.


Where:  Jubilee Farm
6760 Old Jacksonville Rd.
New Berlin, IL 62670
(located 3.8 miles down Old Jacksonville Rd.)

When: 10:00 AM until 3:00 PM