“I invite the whole Augustinian Recollect Family to listen to the cry of Creation and the cry of the poor”
Pope Francis urges us insistently to see what is happening in Creation and reminds us that the cry of the Earth is the cry of the poor. The poor are, precisely, the human face of the ecological crisis in which the world is immersed. They are the ones who suffer the worst impact of the climate crisis.
In addition, future generations are about to inherit from us a world in ruins. Children and young people should not have to pay the cost of the irresponsibility of our generation. In fact, as it is becoming more and more evident, young people are demanding change.
Therefore, amidst the diversity of cultures and social situations, the process of ecological conversion that requires spiritual sensitivity, discernment and openness to attitudinal and behavioral changes is most needed.
We are all called to join forces to take care of our common home together.
The Synod for the Amazon this coming October is an opportunity to become aware of the integral ecology that we need:
I invite the whole Augustinian Recollect Family and all those - in the missions, parishes, schools and centers of spirituality - to share with us their faith in Christ, to listen to the cry of Creation and the cry of the poor.
Open your heart to find Christ and initiate that process of personal, community and ecological conversion. If, as our father St. Augustine says, the Most Holy Trinity is revealed to us in creation, the care of this is contemplation of God.
Our Solidarity Campaign 2019 is directed towards this purpose - to rediscover the profound ecological dimension of our Christian life, something that cannot be left in good intentions and beautiful words. The major superiors will establish the most opportune date to carry out this campaign in each country.
This year I dare to make three concrete proposals:
- Unite our hearts in prayer. Five years ago, Pope Francis published the Encyclical Letter Laudato Si’, on the care of the common home. I suggest you pray the final prayer of Laudato Si’, which I transcribe below.
- Read and use the campaign materials that have been distributed and commit to a concrete gesture of care for the common home. It can be clean up of plastics project, tree planting, volunteering oneself for the advocacy... Every little gesture of this kind means a lot and will move others to do the same. ARCORES, when updated of your initiatives, will take charge of sharing them for mutual encouragement and more commitments.
- Participate financially in the humanitarian projects as proposed in the Solidarity Heart 2019 campaign under the auspices of the ARCORES, the Augustinian Recollect International Solidarity Network.
In Jesus of Nazareth we will find the inspiration and the strength to take on the great challenge of approaching the poor, of loving them and helping them with simplicity. Let the words of the Gospel resonate within us:
Think of the saints of yesterday and today: all have been characterized by responding with their prayer, creativity and generosity to the needs of their time.
May the Lord infuse us with his Spirit to assume the commitments with the Creation that the Gospel of Jesus proposes to us and may He grant us a heart of solidarity with the poorest and the most needy. United in prayer:
They came forth from your all-powerful hand.
They are yours,
filled with your presence and your tender love.
Praise be to you!
You were formed in the womb of Mary our Mother,
you became part of this earth,
and you gazed upon this world with human eyes.
Today you are alive in every creature in your risen glory.
Praise be to you!
the Father’s love and accompany creation as it groans in travail.
You also dwell in our hearts and you inspire us to do what is good.
Praise be to you!
wondrous community of infinite love,
teach us to contemplate you
in the beauty of the universe,
for all things speak of you.
for every being that you have made.
Give us the grace to feel profoundly joined to everything that is.
as channels of your love for all the creatures of this earth,
for not one of them is forgotten in your sight.
that they may avoid the sin of indifference,
that they may love the common good,
advance the weak, and care for this world in which we live.
O Lord, seize us with your power and light,
help us to protect all life, to prepare for a better future,
for the coming of your Kingdom
of justice, peace, love and beauty.
Praise be to you! Amen.
Rome, June 21, 2019.