Dare to Care - January 7th 2022

Laudato Si’ Quote

11. Francis helps us to see that an integral ecology calls for openness to categories which transcend the language of mathematics and biology and take us to the heart of what it is to be human. Just as happens when we fall in love with someone, whenever he would gaze at the sun, the moon or the smallest of animals, he burst into song, drawing all other creatures into his praise. He communed with all creation, even preaching to the flowers, inviting them “to praise the Lord, just as if they were endowed with reason”. His response to the world around him was so much more than intellectual appreciation or economic calculus, for to him each and every creature was a sister united to him by bonds of affection. That is why he felt called to care for all that exists. His disciple Saint Bonaventure tells us that, “from a reflection on the primary source of all things, filled with even more abundant piety, he would call creatures, no matter how small, by the name of ‘brother’ or ‘sister’”.  Such a conviction cannot be written off as naive romanticism, for it affects the choices which determine our behavior. If we approach nature and the environment without this openness to awe and wonder, if we no longer speak the language of fraternity and beauty in our relationship with the world, our attitude will be that of masters, consumers, ruthless exploiters, unable to set limits on their immediate needs. By contrast, if we feel intimately united with all that exists, then sobriety and care will well up spontaneously. The poverty and austerity of Saint Francis were no mere veneer of asceticism, but something much more radical: a refusal to turn reality into an object simply to be used and controlled.

For reflection:

  • What does an “integral ecology” mean to me?
  • How does love, not romanticism, determine my behavioral choices for the created world?
  • How is 2022 inviting me to be open to awe and wonder?
     

Justice for Immigrants

Title 42 and Remain in Mexico policies of the current administration have real life consequences for those seeking safe harbor. The Remain in Mexico policy implementation was reaffirmed by the Biden administration again this week. Human Rights First has compiled a fact sheet (December 2021) of some of these consequences. Read If you don’t speak, who will?

Climate Change

Learn more about “Religions and Ecology: Restoring the Earth Community” through free online courses for audit offered by Yale Forum on Religion and Ecology. Courses were designed by Mary Evelyn Tucker and Jon Grim. For more information, click here. 
For an inspiring story of the power of Pueblo women united to fight for water rights on the Rio Grande, click here
 

Justice for Immigrants

Title 42 and Remain in Mexico policies of the current administration have real life consequences for those seeking safe harbor. The Remain in Mexico policy implementation was reaffirmed by the Biden administration again this week. Human Rights First has compiled a fact sheet (December 2021) of some of these consequences. Read here. If you don’t speak, who will?

End Human Trafficking

January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month. Take the time this month to become more aware and to share your awareness with others.  Be a conscientious and informed consumer. Find out more about who may have picked your tomatoes or made your clothes at ResponsibleSourcingTool.org , or check out the Department of Labor’s List of Goods Produced by Child Labor or Forced Labor . Encourage companies to take steps to prevent human trafficking in their supply chains and publish the information, including supplier or factory lists, for consumer awareness.

  • For a full toolkit of resources to use this month from the US Catholic Sisters Against Human Trafficking, click here
  • Check out the Ending Human Trafficking webpage of the AMSSND site for more information
  • The USCSAHT urge you to contact your Representative to co-sponsor the Frederick Douglass Trafficking Victim Prevention and Protection Reauthorization Act of 2021 (TVPRA) HR 5150 bill. Programs currently funded by the previous TVPA are set to expire soon. For more information, and for an easy to use online form to contact your Representative, click here
     
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