Laudato Si’ Week, a celebration of Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si’ and a call to action for Catholics around the world, is being celebrated 16-24 May, 2022.
Throughout Laudato Si’ Week, you and your community are encouraged to join us in reflecting and acting to bring Laudato Si’ to life.
Related: Things to do in Laudato Si’ Week
Goal 2 – The Cry of the Poor
From the Encyclical
“Strategies for a solution demand an integrated approach to combatting poverty, restoring dignity to the excluded, and at the same time protecting nature.” Laudato Si’ n.139.
Picture in your mind the favelas on barren Peruvian hillsides, a diminishing Amazon rainforest, mines displacing people from their land, mudslides destroying houses in Bangladesh, and closer to home, rising tides displacing villages and threatening whole low-lying islands in the Pacific. Throughout Laudato Si’ runs Pope Francis’ constant commitment “I will point to the intimate relationship between the poor and the fragility of the planet” (LS n. 16).
The cries of the earth and of the poor have always been intertwined in our land. Sometimes these cries are loud and obvious, for example when floods and fires claim lives and livelihoods. However other cries often go unnoticed. They include the cries of incarcerated children, asylum seekers held in indefinite detention, of people seeking to escape abusive relationships, and of the First Peoples seeking justice.
Climate change is already affecting low-income households and disadvantaged communities in Australia disproportionately. ACOSS points out that “low-income earners tend to live in areas more likely to be adversely affected by climate change, and have far less ability to move or make other necessary adjustments to their living circumstances… Few households with low incomes are able to afford significant energy efficiency measures such as insulation, new hot water systems or rainwater tanks… Energy consumption in low income households is partly shaped by the market in second-hand appliances. Many second-hand appliances are inefficient, waste energy and increase bills.”
Pope Francis constantly invites us to cultivate a culture of encounter, moving beyond our comfort zones to draw close to those pushed to the edges.
We can listen. We can learn. We can let go of privilege and power.
God of mercy, you draw near to hear the cry of the poor.
From the edges, hear our cry.
From women in abusive relationships, hear our cry.
From parents struggling to care for children, hear our cry.
From those dispossessed of land and lore, hear our cry.
From those excluded from public spaces and policy, hear our cry.
From those made poor by unjust structures and systems, hear our cry.
From our humble hearts, hear our cry.
We make this prayer in the name of Jesus, our risen Lord, through the power of the Holy Spirit,
Head: Read the Uluru Statement from the Heart and explore this website: https://ulurustatement.org/the-statement
Heart: Spend time really listening to someone on the edge.
Hands: Volunteer with a small-scale local organisation.
In the Diocese of Parramatta, Bishop Vincent Long OFM Conv, Bishop of Parramatta invites all parishes, schools, organisations and families to respond to his invitation to take action on the care of our common home. See the video about this project and find out more here.
With thanks to the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference’s Office for Justice, Ecology and Peace.