Integral Ecology | Tue, Jan 2, 2018
“There has been a tragic rise in the number of migrants seeking to flee from the growing poverty caused by environmental degradation. ... We need to strengthen the conviction that we are one single human family. ... The poor and the earth are crying out." Center of Concern has asked me what, from my perspective, has changed since the release of Laudato Si’, what has not, and what gives me hope. From the very beginning of his papacy in 2013, Pope Francis has encouraged the Church to accompany all people who have to flee. He wept with the asylum seekers and vulnerable migrants huddled at Lampedusa and Lesbos, major transit points in Italy and Greece. He brought some Syrian refugee families back from Lesbos to live in the Vatican. Compassion also marks how Pope Francis wove the cry of the poor and the cry of the earth together in his 2015 Laudato si’: On Care for Our Common Home. The encyclical had a positive impact on international gatherings from the World Meetings of Popular Movements to the Paris Treaty on Climate Change. It continues to inspire practical actions to reverse climate change or desertification and to promote and integrate the newly arrived. Welcoming migrants and refugees has even helped some communities to revitalize. Read the rest of Fr. Michael's blog post at: https://integral-voices.com/2018/01/01/laudato-si-and-caring-for-migrants-and-refugees/.