Our Secular Franciscan Rule calls us to make peace, uphold justice and care for creation. Many of our readers are asking, “What concrete actions can we take in our daily lives that will promote the common good as it relates to justice, peace and the care of creation?”
In this month’sthe Common Good, we pray that our stories will call you to action. With our understanding of the interconnectedness of all of God’s creation, we know that every action, however small, matters as we strive to bring peace, to promote justice and to care for creation. Let God’s light shine through you. Together we make a difference! See-Judge-Pray-Act!
- Margaret Ross, ofs, an editor
Your are stealing our future - a 15 yr old message to COP24 from Democracy Now! - Simple and powerful!
The message this young person gives is a powerful one that sets the stage for the urgency in our world that confronts us all
New Year 2019: An OFS JPIC Perspective
Belated good wishes to all our readers for a holy & fruitful New Year filled with peace & joy & good works!
Editorial by Andrew Conradi, ofs (the nuisance and provocateur)
SEASON OF CREATION 2019 & UNIVERSAL KINSHIP (OFS RULE 18)
Every year, the Season of Creation begins 1 September, the Day of Prayer for Creation, and ends on 4 October, the feast day of St. Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of ecology in many traditions.
Pope Francis is urging the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics and all people of good will to take urgent action against the injustice of climate change and the ecological crisis, to protect the poor and future generations.
His encyclical letter (2015) Laudato Si’ is a compelling call to care for our common home, Earth, building on a long history of Catholic teaching. Are we Secular Franciscans playing our part to build a vibrant movement to respond to Pope Francis’ call? Are we reflecting the necessary urgency and need and desire for change? Are we leaders as our Rule 15 calls us to be?
Since 1970, 60% of the earth’s non-human species have vanished.
The 2019 Season of Creation will be focused on biodiversity and the web of life. Tied into this is the mass extinction of species.
Loss of Biodiversity Laudato Si' 33. It is not enough, however, to think of different species merely as potential “resources” to be exploited, while overlooking the fact that they have value in themselves. Each year sees the disappearance of thousands of plant and animal species which we will never know, which our children will never see, because they have been lost for ever. The great majority become extinct for reasons related to human activity. Because of us, thousands of species will no longer give glory to God by their very existence, nor convey their message to us. We have no such right.
Shouldn't We Care Enough to Take Action?
Editorial by Andrew Conradi, ofs
Pope Francis: “Refusal to care for our Common Home “is an offence against the Creator, an attack on biodiversity and, in short, on life itself.” (Latin American Bishops - DAp 125, 2007; repeated by Pope Francis, 8 June 2018, Amazonia: new paths for the church and for an integral ecology)
Biodiversity The air we breathe, the water we drink and the food we eat all rely on biodiversity, but right now it is in crisis. It is the most complex feature of our planet and the most vital. “Without biodiversity, there is no future for humanity,” says Oxford University Prof David Macdonald. It represents the knowledge learned by evolving species over millions of years about how to survive through the vastly varying environmental conditions Earth has experienced.
The 2019 Season of Creation will be focused on biodiversity and the web of life. SEE VIDEO (1:34 min)
Sixth mass extinction “We are in the midst of the sixth mass extinction, with about 200 species becoming extinct each day. Humans cannot continue to violate the fundamental laws of nature or of science with impunity. If we continue on our current path, the future for our species is bleak.…
Our government is complicit in ignoring the precautionary principle, and in failing to acknowledge that infinite economic growth on a planet with finite resources is non-viable. Instead, the government irresponsibly promotes rampant consumerism and free-market fundamentalism, and allows greenhouse gas emissions to rise. …” (The Guardian, 26 Oct 2018) READ MORE
Scripture Genesis 1:20-23 And God said, "Let the waters bring forth swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the dome of the sky." So God created the great sea monsters and every living creature that moves, of every kind, with which the waters swarm, and every winged bird of every kind. And God saw that it was good. God blessed them, saying, "Be fruitful and multiply and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth." And there was evening and there was morning, the fifth day.
Active Presence in the Church and in the World For a Just and Fraternal Society
GC Article 18 -
2. (Rule 13) They should deepen the true foundations of universal kinship and create a spirit of welcome and an atmosphere of fraternity everywhere. They should firmly commit themselves to oppose every form of exploitation, discrimination, and exclusion and against every attitude of indifference in relation to others.
3. (Rule 13) They should work together with movements which promote the building of fraternity among peoples: they should be committed to "create worthy conditions of life" for all and to work for the freedom of all people.
4. Following the example of Francis, patron of ecologists, they should actively put forward initiatives that care for creation and should work with others in efforts that both put a stop to polluting and degrading nature and also establish circumstances of living and environment which would not be a threat to the human person.
Pope's February Prayer Intention
Prayer: For a generous welcome of the victims of human trafficking, of enforced prostitution, and of violence.
Human Trafficking is all around you - This is how it works
Behind the everyday bargains we all love -- the $10 manicure, the unlimited shrimp buffet -- is a hidden world of forced labor to keep those prices at rock bottom". Noy Thrupkaew investigates human trafficking – which flourishes in the US and Europe, as well as developing countries – and shows us the human faces behind the exploited labor that feeds global consumers.
St Josephine Bakhita. Pope Francis called on the Saint to "help all those trapped in slavery", and to "intercede with the God of mercy that the chains of their captivity might be broken"
Click here to see the TED talk by Noy Thrupkaew. Each of us can take action to help eliminate trafficking.
Intercessions - Let us pray:
That we and all people may respond to the signs of the times expressed in the cry of nature, wounded by humankind’s inability to recognize its vocation to be the custodian of all that exists, let us pray.
That international organizations and OFS may speak out strongly against the exploitation of the resources so generously offered by Sister Mother Earth, and for those many brothers and sisters who live in need due to waste and abuse on the part of individuals and nations,let us pray.
That those involved in political life, and every citizen as well, may grow in the awareness that any behavior that does not respect the environment damages human coexistence and undermines the foundations of peace, let us pray.
Franciscan Voice Canada launches a new feature - Films
Reluctant Saint - Francis of Assisi
A commentary on this film:For those who know nothing about the life and ministry of Francis of Assisi, this is an excellent place to start. The documentary spans his initial encounter with Christ all the way to his death, in just under an hour. Indeed, it is a sketch with some nice insights provided by various commentators.... (56 min.)
Editors:Andrew Conradi, ofs, OLOTA Director of JPIC; George Guimond, ofs, RFEC Director of JPIC & Margaret Ross, ofs, Minister, St Agnes Fraternity, Coquitlam, BC
“If we all did only that — not slander others — peace would advance,” said Pope Francis
If you are not already a subscriber to this newsletter you can become one by going toFranciscan Voice Canada - Contact Us. If you are receiving this newsletter for the first time and do not wish to receive it simple go to the "unsubscribe" link at the bottom.