Laudato Si’ Week, this year to be held May 22-29, marks the 7th anniversary of Pope Francis’ landmark encyclical on creation care. This event unites Catholics to listen and respond to the cry of creation and celebrate the process that has so far been made in bringing Laudato Si’ to life.
Laudato Si’ translates to “praised be to you, my Lord” and its idea is to invite people to protect God’s creation, embrace a positive lifestyle change, and to take care of people who are poor and more vulnerable.
‘“Praise be to you, my Lord”. In the words of this beautiful canticle, Saint Francis of Assisi reminds us that our common home is like a sister with whom we share our life and a beautiful mother who opens her arms to embrace us. “Praise be to you, my Lord, through our sister, Mother Earth, who sustains and governs us, and who produces various fruit with coloured flowers and herbs.” This sister now cries out to us because of the harm we have inflicted on her by our irresponsible and abuse of the goods with which God has endowed her. We have come to see ourselves as her lords and masters, entitles to plunder her at will. The violence present in our hearts, wounded by sin, is also reflected in the symptoms of sickness evident in the soil, in the water, in the air and in all forms of life. This is why the earth herself, burdened and laid waste, is among the most abandoned and maltreated of our poor.’ – Pope Francis.
There are 7 Laudato Si’ goals to guide our action. They are listed with some action examples.
- Response to the cry of the Earth – protecting biodiversity, promoting sustainable agriculture and guaranteeing access to clean water for all
- Response to the cry of the poor – projects to promote solidarity, improvement of social systems and social service programmes
- Ecological Economics – ethical investments, prioritizing care labour and protecting the dignity of workers
- Adoption of Sustainable Lifestyles – reducing waste and recycling, active mobility and avoiding single use items
- Ecological Education – equitable access to education and promoting human rights
- Ecological Spirituality – developing ecological catechesis, retreats and formation programmes
- Community and Resilience and Empowerment – promoting advocacy and encouraging a sense of belonging in local communities and ecosystems
To put the principles into action, the Laudato Si challenge brings together courageous leaders, unlikely allies of goodwill, from the public, private and faith sectors, in spirit of solidarity, humility and fraternity, to advance and accelerate new, specific, measurable and time-bound commitments to impact. We combine the precision and rigor of the venture philanthropy model with the focus, alignment and time-bound strengths of the commitment model – to drive measurable, sustainable and enduring impact.