Dr. Carolyn Woo Reflects on Laudato Si’ Anniversary

For Catholic Relief Services, Pope Francis’s call to ‘Care for Our Common Home’ has become ingrained in their every day work. In the anniversary month of the release of Laudato si’, President and CEO of CRS Dr. Carolyn Woo wrote a reflection on the impacts the encyclical has made around the world. She outlines the various Laudato si’-inspired acts around the world, including the increasing investment of business leaders in environmentally-sound practices, adaptation programs in Ethiopia, and the introduction of ‘Climate Smart Agriculture’ across Africa and Latin America, where the effects of climate change are at their worst.

In addition to the global impacts of the encyclical, Woo shows that the response has been particularly robust in the U.S. as well. Referencing the impact of Laudato si’ in the world of higher education, she writes, “At Catholic Relief Services, our I Am Climate Change campaign has energized students on college campuses across the country, inspiring them to look at their own behaviors and speak out for others, especially by advocating with government leaders.”

Reminding us of the message of the encyclical, she concludes, “God is so generous and bountiful. He has given us a precious gift—our natural world—that will more than take care of our needs. But we must be the stewards of this gift, cherishing and nurturing it, not exploiting it selfishly.”

Read more of Dr. Woo’s reflection here!

How has your college or university been impacted by Laudato si’? Let us know! 

New Resources for Celebrating the Feast of St. Francis

The feast day of St. Francis of Assisi is celebrated on October 4. For this special occasion, Catholic Climate Covenant has created a 90 minute program guide focused on ways that we can help the environment as we try to emulate St. Francis’ care for the world that God created.  The guide and other documents can be edited to better fit your community.

The theme for this year’s St. Francis feast day will be “Dial Down the Heat: Cultivate the Common Good for our Common Home.” The focus will be on creating common ground to have constructive dialogue on climate change.  In the spirit of Pope Francis, this is an opportunity to have dialogue about the environmental impact on our poor communities.

The Catholic Climate Covenant is offering a program guide that includes:

How do your campus celebrate the Feast of St. Francis and promote constructive dialogue on sustainability and climate change?  Let us know!

 

Food for Thought Friday: Catholic Ecology Draws Parallels Between Amoris Laetitia and Laudato Si’

Food for Thought Friday: Pope Francis’s latest apostolic exhortation, Amoris Laetitia: On Love in the Family, focuses on Church teaching on morality and sexuality; however, as Catholic Ecology writes, Amoris Laetitia and Laudato Si’ are “united by the same truths”, for example, in criticizing the throwaway culture.  For an interesting article on the link between Amoris Laetitia and Laudato Si’, read the Catholic Ecology post here!

World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation

Pope Francis has called for the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation to take place on September 1, 2016. This day, established last year, gives us a opportunity to reflect on the world that God created for us.  Pope Francis wrote:  “The annual World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation will offer individual believers and communities a fitting opportunity to reaffirm their personal vocation to be stewards of creation, to thank God for the wonderful handiwork which he has entrusted to our care, and to implore his help for the protection of creation as well as his pardon for the sins committed against the world in which we live.”

Resources for the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, such as special prayers, ideas for action, and discussion guides, are available on the USCCB environmental justice webpage and the We are Salt & Light Laudato Si’ webpage.

 

 

Food for Thought Friday: Pope Francis has some Advice for College Students

Food for Thought Friday: With a new cohort of first-year students starting in college soon, Busted Halo, a Catholic digital magazine, has found a way to incorporate the wisdom of Pope Francis into their yearly advice for incoming students. With advice such as ‘Be open to new people,’ and ‘Take care of others,’ Busted Halo brings to light how Our Holy Father’s words can accompany students, both new and returning, in their journey through higher education. Read the full article here!