Sister Simone Campbell of “Nuns On The Bus” has traveled the nation speaking about social issues. Campbell will be at Hanover College on Jan. 23. Her talk is free and open to the public. (September 2012 photo by Thomas Altfather Good)
Sister Simone Campbell of “Nuns On The Bus” has traveled the nation speaking about social issues. Campbell will be at Hanover College on Jan. 23. Her talk is free and open to the public. (September 2012 photo by Thomas Altfather Good)
Religious leader and social activist Sister Simone Campbell will speak at Hanover College on Thursday.

Campbell began the "Nuns on the Bus" tour in 2012, traveling to nine states and attending rallies to oppose the budget proposal being discussed in Congress.

In 2010, Campbell authored the "nuns' letter" supporting the Affordable Care Act.

Campbell, who grew up in the 1960s, said she's always been involved in social activism.

"By the time I was in high school, I was all concerned about civil rights," she said. "I cared a lot about civil rights. For me faith and the message of the gospel has always been connected to justice."

Campbell, who is also an attorney, is the executive director of NETWORK. The Washington, D.C.-based firm lobbies for economic and social changes, particularly on issues of peace, public policy, immigration reform, healthcare and economic justice.

During her talk Thursday, Campbell said she'll discuss peace, social and economic justice and the increasing income and wealth disparity in America.

"When I talk about income and economic disparity in this country and world, my concern is for the 100 percent. It's for all of us," Campbell said. "What research is showing is that the greater income and wealth disparity, the less quality of life for everyone. Everyone would benefit if we reduce disparity. I'm not talking about ending it, that's never going to happen. But, we can reduce it."

Campbell also voiced her support of Pope Francis. After taking the papacy in March, Francis has made some waves for voicing his opinion on topics such as homosexuality, the economy and contraception.

"His orientation toward people who struggle in our world is pretty amazing. He not only talks about it, but he lives it. That's the authenticity to his message that is so refreshing," she said.

Campbell will speak at the Fitzgibbon Recital hall, Lynn Center for Fine Arts as part of the June Rogers Speaker Series. The event begins at 7 p.m. and is free and open to the public.