“It is my strong conviction that we can work together to bring about a transformation of our culture and our world drawing on the way of the Gospel as seen in the lives of Francis, Clare and other great witnesses of nonviolence,” says Louis Vitale, O.F.M.

Fr. Louie believes environmental degradation and nuclear arsenals are existential threats to world peace. He has repeatedly put his body on the line in protest against war and torture. He has been arrested over 200 times, according to reports in the Los Angeles Times.

With a background in sociology and a focus on Sociology of Religion and Social Movements, Fr. Louis is one of the founders of the Nevada Desert Experience that began the present day protest of Nuclear Testing in Nevada. He is cofounder of the Pace e Bene Center for nonviolence and a lecturer in the Spirituality and Practice of Nonviolence at the Franciscan School of Theology.

Fr. Louie was provincial superior of the California Franciscan Friars from 1979 to 1988 and served St. Boniface Catholic Church in the Tenderloin from 1993 to 2005.

Next Sunday, at the First Unitarian Universalist Church of San Francisco, go to hear Fr. Louie’s story about being called to protest and jail while also participating fully in his local community.