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Mercy Responses to the call to 'care for Our Common Home'

While participating in a Global Catholic Climate Movement meeting in Assisi earlier this year, I became totally smitten with a piece of artwork in a shop that had each of the stanzas of Saint Francis’ Canticle of the Creatures portrayed on a painted tile. Together, the tiles form a beautiful representation of the prayer that inspired the title of Pope Francis’ encyclical, Laudato Si’.

Now we have a modern day version of this prayerful attentiveness to all of God’s creation, in the pope’s Prayer for Earth that concludes the encyclical. His prayer is both a hymn of praise and an invitation to transformation in a world so in need of justice and mercy. It seems a fitting framework for looking at just some of the ways that Mercy around the world has responded to the call to “care for Our Common Home” since the encyclical’s release two years ago.

“All-powerful God,
you are present in the whole universe
and in the smallest of your creatures.”

Just as Francis of Assisi poetically praised Brother and Sister sun, moon and stars, wind, water and fire, Pope Francis opens his prayer with homage to God’s presence in all of creation. Many participants in the Mercy International Reflection Process during the Jubilee Year of Mercy shared similar insights after analyzing issues of concern in the encyclical that particularly touched them. Among those named were the need to “live out of deep interconnection and relationship with the natural world and each other” and to “be a community which feels the pain of Earth and the cry of the Poor with a new ecological consciousness reflected in attitudes, habits, structures and actions.”..


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Messages to: Marianne Comfort - Institute of the Americas Justice Team