BY ISN STAFF | June 4, 2015
A brief Vatican press release posted earlier today announced that Pope Francis’s encyclical on climate change will be released on June 18th. The release also said that the method of dissemination for the document will be announced via Vatican press statement in the coming days.
While there was no official mention of the name, Joshua McElwee of National Catholic Reporter as well as numerous other media outlets reported that the name will be ‘Laudato Sii’ (Praised Be). The title comes from the 13th century prayer written by Saint Francis of Assisi entitled Canticle of Brother Sun and Sister Moon. In the prayer Saint Francis offers praise to God through various elements of nature including “Sister Moon,” “Brother Wind and Air,” “Sister Water,” and “Brother Fire. Regis J. Armstrong, OFM, Cap. and Ignatius C. Brady, OFM, authors of “The Classics of Western Spirituality – Francis & Clare” emphasize the importance the words “brother” and “sister” throughout the prayer as illustrative of St. Francis’ “intimate and familiar with the wonders of creation that he embraces them as “Brother” and “Sister,” that is, members of one family.”
“We are excited to finally know of the day when this very important document will be released,” said Christopher Kerr, executive director of the Igantian Solidarity Network. “Pope Francis’s encyclical has the potential to cause an awakening for Catholics in our daily lives and in the lives of our churches, schools, and other ministries. As a Catholic, I am tremendously grateful for his leadership on this issue that is impacting all of humanity, especially those marginalized by economic poverty and injustice.”
The encyclical comes in anticipation of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris scheduled to take place from November 30 to December 10. The UN has described the conference as “a crucial conference” to “achieve a new international agreement on the climate, applicable to all countries, with the aim of keeping global warming below 2°C.”
Canticle of Brother Sun and Sister Moon
St. Francis of Assisi
Most High, all-powerful, all-good Lord, All praise is Yours, all glory, all honour and all blessings.
To you alone, Most High, do they belong, and no mortal lips are worthy to pronounce Your Name.
Praised be You my Lord with all Your creatures,
especially Sir Brother Sun,
Who is the day through whom You give us light.
And he is beautiful and radiant with great splendour,
Of You Most High, he bears the likeness.
Praised be You, my Lord, through Sister Moon and the stars,
In the heavens you have made them bright, precious and fair.
Praised be You, my Lord, through Brothers Wind and Air,
And fair and stormy, all weather’s moods,
by which You cherish all that You have made.
Praised be You my Lord through Sister Water,
So useful, humble, precious and pure.
Praised be You my Lord through Brother Fire,
through whom You light the night and he is beautiful and playful and robust and strong.
Praised be You my Lord through our Sister,
who sustains and governs us,
producing varied fruits with colored flowers and herbs.
Praise be You my Lord through those who grant pardon for love of You and bear sickness and trial.
Blessed are those who endure in peace, By You Most High, they will be crowned.
Praised be You, my Lord through Sister Death,
from whom no-one living can escape. Woe to those who die in mortal sin! Blessed are they She finds doing Your Will.
No second death can do them harm. Praise and bless my Lord and give Him thanks,
And serve Him with great humility.