CMN invites ministry leaders to an online workshop in which participants will experience restorative justice circles and gain an understanding of their applications in criminal justice and ministry settings.

Event Details

Saturday, Jan. 9, 2020
11 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. EST // 8 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. PST
This virtual event will take place via Zoom conference. A meeting link will be sent to those who register.

About the Intensive

Peacemaking circles are a foundational restorative practice that can create opportunities for healing and repair among those impacted by crime and incarceration. In addition to addressing instances of harm, circles can be applied ministry settings for reflection, community building, and social action.

In this introductory experience, participants will gain a shared understanding of restorative justice principles and practices. Through experienced facilitation and spirit-filled reflection, participants will:

Learn about a variety of applications for circles in ministry and civic life
Hear stories and examples of restorative practices as they are are applied in faith-based context​s
Experience the transformative power of participating in peacemaking circles
Discern and share opportunities to utilize restorative circles in their dioceses, parishes, and communities

This workshop is ideal for Catholic ministry leaders who wish to build a deeper understanding of restorative justice practices in their dioceses, networks, ministries, and communities.

 About Our Facilitators

Catholic Mobilizing Network is pleased to welcome Hector Avitia (Precious Blood Ministry of Reconciliation) and Sr. Pat Bergan, CSJ (Well Spirituality Center) to share their skill and experience in restorative justice ministry.


Hector Avitia is a Mexican national that grew up near Albuquerque, New Mexico. After getting his business degree from the University of Notre Dame in 2010, he worked for a rental car company and an auto insurance corporation while serving as a youth minister for his local parish. In 2017, he made the switch to the non-profit sector. In order to figure out what was next in his life, Hector did a year of service at Precious Blood Ministry of Reconciliation in Chicago, Illinois. PBMR is a restorative justice, trauma-informed, faith-based non-profit community center that focuses on families that have been impacted by violence. After his year of service, he joined the PBMR team as the screen printing program coordinator. The screen printing program teaches the art of screen printing while also teaching soft work skills that are crucial for obtaining and maintaining a job. Outside of PBMR, Hector is involved with local community organizing groups, is part of an intentional living community in the neighborhood, and translating for the medical staff of a nearby free healthcare clinic. Hector enjoys biking, reading, catching up on his favorite show, and reconnecting to his ancestral roots.

Pat Bergen, CSJ, is a member of the Congregation of Sisters of St. Joseph. She is an educator, spiritual directress, restorative justice circle keeper, and retreat and workshop facilitator. She co-founded the Well Spirituality Center in La Grange, Illinois and recently completed service on the Leadership Team of her Congregation. Sr. Pat holds a Doctorate in Ministry and has a passion for awakening people to the oneness of all creation and its implications for our understanding of Scripture, justice, leadership, and prayer. In addition, she leads restorative justice circles for various groups.  Recently, those circles have focused on topics including racism, challenging whiteness, and the interconnection of racism and climate change.

Cost and Registration

A suggested donation of $50 offsets the materials provided. Each Intensive attendee will receive a copy of CMN's faith formation guide Harm, Healing, and Human Dignity: A Catholic Encounter with Restorative Justice and The Little Book of Circle Process by Kay Pranis. 

  • This is a highly participatory event. Attendees are asked to arrive on time and be present for the entirety of the event.
  • Because space is limited, if you have already attended a CMN circles intensive, you're encouraged to invite another member of your ministry team to sign up. 

Registration is now full. Email to be added to a waitlist. 


Please contact Caitlin Morneau, Director of Restorative Justice, with questions at