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God’s love for creation finds its deepest expression in the self-giving of the incarnation, in the Word made flesh in Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus loved the creatures of earth he found around him – birds, flowers, seeds growing into trees, and he loved human beings. He loved us all to the very point of death on a cross. Through his death and resurrection, the risen Christ draws to final fulfilment not only human beings but the whole of creation. The risen Christ is present and active in the whole of creation, as Pope Francis makes clear in his prayer, “Son of God, Jesus, through you all things were made. 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” (LS 246).

We are interrelated with all other creatures as our brothers and sisters. Integral ecology

Integral ecology is at the centre of Pope Francis’ Encyclical. Ecological commitment and commitment to the good of humanity, above all the poor, are held together in one vision. These two commitments are united as aspects

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of the one ecological vocation. Our response to the crisis we face will need to be holistic, based on a broad vision of reality that involves not only plants, animals, habitats, the atmosphere, rivers and seas, but also human beings and their culture. We find inspiration for this kind of integration in St Francis of Assisi, in his love for the poor and his love for the other creatures of the natural world. From the very first homily of his pontificate, Pope Francis has made this same link clearly and strongly, calling us to protect creation, and to protect our human brothers and sisters, above all those who are poor and excluded. In Laudato Si’ he writes, “Everything is connected. Concern for the environment thus needs to be joined to a sincere love for our fellow human beings and an unwavering commitment to resolving the problems of society” (LS 91). An integral ecology involves love and respect for animals and plants, but also for human history, art and architecture. Integral ecology involves protecting the cultural treasures of humanity. In a very particular way it involves respect for the cultures of indigenous peoples. “They are not merely one minority among others, but should be the principle dialogue partners, especially when large projects affecting their land

THE FRANCIS EFFECT II: PRAISED BE YOU – ON CARE FOR OUR COMMON HOME

Profile for Catholic Mission

The Francis Effect II - Praised Be You - On Care for our Common Home  

Twelve prominent Catholic leaders from various sectors and ministries of the Australian Church offer their perspectives on Pope Francis’ enc...

The Francis Effect II - Praised Be You - On Care for our Common Home  

Twelve prominent Catholic leaders from various sectors and ministries of the Australian Church offer their perspectives on Pope Francis’ enc...

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