We are losing our attitude of wonder, of contemplation, of listening to creation and thus we no longer manage to interpret within it what Benedict XVI calls “the rhythm of the love story between God and man”. (Pope Francis)
In 2015 Pope Francis instituted the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, which is annually celebrated on September 1st. It coincides with a similar celebration established by the Orthodox Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew. It is therefore also a day of ecumenical prayer. Read Pope Francis’ 2018 Message for the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation in which he warns that there needs to be a “renewed and sound relationship” between humanity and creation for the good of the planet.
He focused his message on water – a simple and precious element – and described “access to safe drinkable water as a basic and universal human right, since it is essential to survival and, as such, is condition for the exercise of other human rights”.
Laudato Si (Praise Be to You) is Pope Francis’ second encyclical letter addressed to all of humanity on environmental issues, our place in creation and our responsibility to our common home. In his letter Pope Francis calls us to an ecological spirituality whereby we find beauty in every moment and are drawn towards a simpler life in which we find joy and peace. In the English language title Care for our Common Home he makes a passionate call to all people to take “swift and unified global action” to combat the environmental and social destruction in our world”.
Laudato Si summary by Alan Rew, a Worth Abbey parishioner. Copies of the encyclical are available in the Abbey Bookshop.
How Can We Respond to Laudato Si in Prayer and Action?
Pope Francis calls for us to make simple daily gestures to help combat climate change, the single biggest threat to reducing poverty that exists today. We can reduce the impact of global warming on our environment by taking individual actions to live more sustainably.
CAFOD has a variety of resources to help people learn and reflect on Pope Francis’ teaching and find direction on ways to respond. We can take action, both as individuals and and as a parish, to his call to care for the world’s poorest people and for the earth, our common home.
CAFOD’s livesimply award is a way of putting our faith into action in our parish, enabling us to strengthen the bonds of community, nourish our spiritual life and care for God’s gift of creation.
The Global Catholic Climate Movement, a global network of 400+ member organisations and a community of thousands of Catholics, is a response to the Pope’s call to take action in the Laudato Si’ encyclical. Click on the image for more details.
On the 1st September 2018 CaFE (Catholic Faith Exploration) launched Global Healing – How Faith helps us to care for our common home. This is a film-based resource to help us to respond to the damage we are doing to our planet – our common home. It is for parishes, groups and individuals and aims to inform, challenge and equip people to engage with Pope Francis’ vital call to Care for Our Common Home.