BY ISN STAFF | June 18, 2015
The Ignatian Solidarity Network welcomes with great excitement the release of Pope Francis’s encyclical on the environment entitled Laudato Si: Care for Our Common Home. The 150+ page document offers a broad-ranging analysis of the ways that our global family is called to respond to what Pope Francis describes as, “deterioration of the environment and of society affecting the most vulnerable people on the planet.”
“Pope Francis presents climate change as a moral issue that requires the response of the global community,” said Christopher Kerr, executive director of the Ignatian Solidarity Network. Kerr continued, “Francis emphasizes the need for all voices to be part of this response, especially the voices of those who are marginalized.”
As the first pope from the Global South, Francis presents the reality of the economically poor and marginalized throughout the document. Early in the encyclical he reflects on the realities of life for the urban poor who face toxic emissions, poor public transportation, and unhealthy living conditions. Later in the document he speaks to realities of “extreme poverty” in areas lacking “harmony” which create opportunity for exploitation of people and the environment. He invites readers to seek the “common good” with a “summons to solidarity and a preferential option for the poorest of our brothers and sisters.”
On his hopes for the encyclical, Kerr said, “I hope that Pope Francis’s encyclical becomes a call to action for Catholics and especially those affiliated with 100+ Jesuit and other partner institutions that are a part of our network. With over 250,000 current students, 2+ million alumni, 14,000 current and former Jesuit Volunteers, and tens of thousands of Jesuit parish parishioners, this invitation to solidarity could have tremendous impacts. We are excited to invite the Ignatian network into contemplative reflection and action for the common good.”
The Ignatian Solidarity Network (ISN) is a national social justice education and advocacy network inspired by the spirituality of St. Ignatius of Loyola. ISN was founded in 2004 and is a lay-led 501(c)3 organization working in partnership with Jesuit universities, high schools, and parishes, along with many other Catholic institutions and social justice partners.
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