We reported earlier this month that the “Nuns on the Bus,” who made national news for their social justice tour during the 2012 election, are going back on the road on behalf of immigration reform — and they just released their tour schedule:

A total of 6500 miles and 53 events in 40 cities across 15 states, over the course of three weeks, starting May 29 at Ellis Island in New York and ending on June 18 on Angel Island in San Francisco. Woody Guthrie ought to be the soundtrack.

The official title: “NETWORK Nuns on the Bus: A Drive for Faith, Family, and Citizenship.”

"Nuns on the Bus" road map courtesy of Network

“Nuns on the Bus” road map courtesy of Network

It’s an impressive road trip, by any standards, and a huge step up from the nine-state, 2,700 mile tour across the Midwest and Northeast that first vaulted the Nuns on the Bus, and their charismatic leader, Sister Simone Campbell, into the headlines and onto “The Colbert Report,” e.g.

(“By the way, where’s the outfit?” as Colbert’s faux blowhard said to Campbell. “You burn it at one of those radical wimple-burning parties?” I suspect real blowhards, and others, were applauding!)

In any event, Network, the social justice lobby that Campbell heads, seems ready for the challenge, and perhaps supporters — and protesters — will be ready for them. They’re not coming out of nowhere like last time’s magical mystery tour.

What to watch for: whether, or how many, bishops join on. This time the nuns and the bishops are on the same page on a shared issue, immigration reform. But the nuns are still under Vatican scrutiny. Will they make common cause for “commonsense immigration reform”?

“They don’t have to ride on the bus,” Campbell told me earlier this month. “They can come stand with us at the events.”

Stay tuned. And meanwhile check out the full schedule of their Southern swing.


  1. So wish you were near Cincinnati this coming Sunday…we are having Janet Kalven’s 100 Birthday Party at Off the Avenue Studios, 1546 Knowlton Street,
    Cincinnati, Ohio 45223…11am brunch on the 26th…stop in if you are near….

  2. Susan Q Bryan

    Just one correction/comment; the first tour was to promote the Faithful Budget, which the Bishops also supported, along with people of many faiths. They were standing in solidarity with the Bishops on basic Catholic social teachings then and now.

  3. David Gibson

    David Gibson

    Post author

    Susan Q: True…sorta. And not. Because a lot of bishops agreed with Paul Ryan more than the Nuns on the Bus, or said that his positions were not in conflict with church teaching. So you didn’t get any bishops standing with the sisters then — also because they were events that favored Democrats during a presidential campaign. But you may get some Bishops on the Bus this time.

    • Shows how very political the hierarchy remains even after John Paul demanded they quit elective office. Every bishop knows he has a bigger “bully pulpit” than any elected member of our national House of Representatives–and many senators, also. And when they gather under Timothy Dolan’s USCCB, that’s politics at its highest and most suspicious. Actually, it’s a violation of the separation of church and state constitutionally required by the First Amendment.

  4. Nuns on the Bus should make a stop in St. Peter’s Square and gather a crowd of The People of God–sans the clergy–and demand of Francis and his curia that Benedict’s and Cardinal Levada’s gestapo treatment of them be promptly stopped.

    While they’re at it, they can clarify for Francis how their ministries are precisely the consideration of the poor and those cast out by John Paul, Benedict, and the continuing clericalism of their church, those Francis has been urging us to better attend. Their ministries are exactly what Jesus, “The Model of the Holy,’ urged us to do.

  5. commonsense....

    “When an alien resides with you in your land, you shall not oppress the alien. The alien who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you; you shall love the alien as yourself.”
    Leviticus 19:33-34

    [See also Exodus 22:21, 23:9; Leviticus 25:35; Deuteronomy 1:16, 10:19, 23:16, 27:19; Psalm 146:9; Jeremiah 22:3, Zechariah 7:9-10; Mathew 6:14-15, 22:37-40, 25:31-46.]

    God bless the Nuns on the Bus! All the angels in heaven rejoice!

    I hope and pray the Bishops will stand with God and the Nuns on this one. So far, most have acted more like Pilate than Christ on this matter.

  6. Aloha, Nuns and all those who support them!

    I AM a writer and strong believer in everyone’s right to dignity, freedom, love, equality, care, nourishment and prosperity.

    I wrote a poem, “A Tweet To Pope Francis” that combines nature, Mother Mary and St. Joseph, Mary Magdalene and Jesus, and St. Francis and St. Claire in a message to the Pope about treating females equally. You may enjoy reading it and viewing the exquisite artwork.

    It is published in OpEdNetwork, a progressive blog that has had wonderful articles about the NOTB from time to time.

    To view the article in OpEdNetwork, please click here:
    Equality In All Things–Equal opportunity for leadership, and treatment with full love, is the humble request of the Masters.

    Please feel free to comment, tweet, LIKE, post on your network, and forward to all who may benefit from its vibrations, in its entirety, with full credit given to the author and the artwork.

    Again, thank you for all you are and do to make this world a more beautiful, joyful, peaceful, and loving place.

    Cynthia Piano

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