19/03/2022

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Religious Congregations and Laudato Si Platform

Religious Congregations and Laudato Si Platform

 

CONGREGATIONS JOURNEYING TOGETHER WITH THE LAUDATO SI' ACTION PLATFORM 

 

On March 18 more than 170 Religious Women and Men gathered to share good practices on how to implement the Laudato Si Platfrom.

 

Sr Sheila Kinsey, International Coordinator of the UISG Campaign 'Sowing Hope for the Planet', introduces the webinar:

"We are challenged to reach the tipping point in order not to fail for 3.5% for change and 21% to 25% for system change."

 

The two Superiors General Unions, UISG and USG, are committed to encourage all Religious to "join forces, in a coordinated manner, in the face of this important challenge."

 

Sr Pat Murray, Executive Secretary of UISG, highlights the incredible mission of Sisters in favour of Laudato Si Action Platform and the importance to collaborate together throughout the world. She expresses her gratitude to Sr Sheila for her powerful mission in favour of Laudato Si: we can affirm that Religious Sisters are now a huge network to protect our common home.

 

Here is an extract of her testimony:

"At the UISG Plenary in 2019 the Superiors General made a commitment to bring Pope Francis’ Encyclical Laudato Si to the centre of the lives and ministries of the sisters in their congregations. The UISG’s initiative had the title “Sowing Hope for the Planet.” I think that it is fair to say that as sisters moved quickly to respond to Pope Francis’s appeal.

Under the extraordinary leadership of Sr. Sheila Kinsey the fruits of these past years are visible on the “Sowing Hope for the Planet” website which details the many activities, resources and initiatives which have emerged and which are being shared across congregations.

 

We realize more and more that what we can do together is always more fruitful and more sustainable.


Now we are entering another phase as we enlarge the space of our tents and journey with so many others within the Laudato SI Action Platform (LSAP).

This is a further extension and expansion of what we have already been doing.  Sr. Sheila’s work has been recognized at the level of the Vatican and within the Laudato Si Movement and she together now with Fr. Joseph Blay are playing an important role in helping to create and sustain the Laudato Si Action Platform.

 

The goals of the LSAP are embedded in the constitutions of our religious congregations. Religious women and Religious men are active within so many of the sectors named  and are part of the dream of creating a worldwide community – not just of Catholics and Christians but of people of all faiths and no faith - who are committed to living these key values and making them operational. For some the actions will be big and bold but for many of us, the actions will be small and will seem insignificant.

 

However I remember visiting one my sisters who are living in Jicamarca, a very poor community situated in a dry arid dust bowl on the edge of Lima in Peru. It a dusty uninviting place. However the sisters decided to begin to plant a few flowers to brighten the neighborhood – within a short time every family was carefully planting their flower. Eventually the colors of the flowers became powerful signs of hope in that poor community. 

 


We know that  “We are faced not with two separate crises, one environmental and the other social, but rather with one complex crisis which is both social and environmental.” 
 

At the level of LSAP, we have to begin to advocate on behalf of the People and on behalf of the Planet.

Let us become creative in the ways that we advocate and call on our governments at local and national levels to protect, nourish and sustain life especially for those living on the margins of society and for whom the environmental crisis is an ever more pressing reality. Perhaps we need to create a wall of shame where we display photos of the environmental destruction taking place in our different parts of the world which deeply affects all human life."


 

"Thank you, Sr. Patricia Murray, for your support to all Justice and Peace issues, including to Laudato Si' Action Platform." As a sister participant writes in the chat.
 

Info on the UISG Campaign Sowing Hope for the Planet:  www.sowinghopefortheplanet.org

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