Covid-19 has affected all of us deeply, we’ve all had to learn to live in a new way and we’re all wondering what life will be like after the pandemic. Staying at home has given me the opportunity to read Laudato Si’ and appreciate that its richness and wisdom has a special resonance for our time.
Laudato Si’ asks us to view the world, our common home, in a new way reminding us that “everything is connected”. An encounter with Jesus Christ calls us to an “ecological conversion”, a new relationship with all created things and to care for our common home.
One of the best-known quotes from the document is a call to listen to a twin-cry, ‘the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor’. The global emergencies of the climate crisis and the current pandemic affect the poor and vulnerable most. The cries of the earth and the poor will only cease when we recognise that we are part of creation, connected to the rest of the created world and embrace the challenge to work together for change.
In his Easter address, Pope Francis talked about a ‘contagion of hope’ in these difficult times. This hopeful contagion has spread to our own Diocese of East Anglia. In the last five years five parishes have responded to Laudato Si’ and have achieved the CAFOD Live Simply award by living simply, in solidarity with people in poverty and sustainably with creation. Despite the current lockdown many parishes have advertised the CAFOD Covid-19 Emergency appeal on their websites and in their newsletters, so that we can help the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people now.
If you haven’t read Laudato Si’ yet why not download a copy and the study notes from CAFOD’s website? If you have read it why not take another look in Laudato Si’ week and find out what it has to say to you in 2020?
Pictured above is Jane Crone reading Laudato Si.