The Archdiocese of Sydney has made a toolkit available for parish groups who wish to get active around Care of Creation.
Launching the kit at St Patrick’s Mortlake on Sunday, Justice and Peace Promoter Fr Peter Smith said the kit helps us reflect on how we can be a part of Pope Francis’s call for us to walk gently on this planet.
“The kit offers practical ways that we as individuals, as families, as parishes, as schools, can engage with Pope Francis’s encyclical, the ways we can, in a sense, be co-creators with God of this planet,” Fr Smith said.
The launch event was attended by parishioners from around the archdiocese. Attendees each received a flowering plant to take back and plant in their home or parish.
Each plant included a QR code linking to the kit, which is digital-only to provide an example of using fewer resources.
“As these plants are taken back and take root in our home communities, hopefully the ideas set out in our new kit will also take root around the archdiocese,” social justice facilitator Dr Michael Walker said.
“The church has given environmental concern a new focus with the Laudato Si’ action platform.
“It stands in a long tradition, though, that can be found in the writings of the saints and in the Hebrew Scriptures.”
Also in attendance was Chris Nolan from Caritas Australia, representing Catholic Earthcare.
“Parishes play a critical role in promoting the values of Laudato Si’. The Plenary Council’s decree on integral ecology encourages all Catholic parishes to join the Laudato Si’ action platform, which outlines specific steps that we can take to protect our planet,” Mr Nolan said.
“I hope all parishes engage with the toolkit, and the resources provided by Catholic Earthcare, as a way of supporting their journey toward ecological justice.”
St Patrick’s parishioner Maureen Casey said, “I support Pope Francis’ encyclical, Laudate Si, and yesterday’s celebration of Mass at St Patrick’s Mortlake enhanced the importance of each parish working actively to support the care of all creation.
“It was a significant ceremony which marked the the introduction of ‘the Care of Creation’ guide for parish groups.
“The symbol of the distribution of the seedlings was a practical demonstration of how we could begin.
“It was a special privilege to have been part of this occasion. I hope our parishes are successful in continuing this good work.”
The kit is available at https://justiceandpeace.org.au/laudato-si-kit/