Statement by Bishop Michael F. Burbidge
on fifth anniversary of Laudato Si': On Care for Our Common Home


Brothers and sisters in Christ, on May 14, the Church will begin a nine-day global campaign to mark the fifth anniversary of Pope Francis' encyclical Laudato Si': On Care for Our Common Home. In this beautiful work, Pope Francis builds upon the teaching legacy of his predecessors Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI to urge Catholics and people of good will to care for all of God's creation.

Pope Francis reminds us that God's act of creation was an act of love, and that throughout salvation history and above all in the Incarnation God has called us to care for his gift. The pope teaches us about the need for an “integral ecology,” which unites our concerns for the environment and our concerns for human life, which is the pinnacle of God's creation. Pope Francis reaffirms our need to protect all human life, from conception until natural death, and he also emphasizes that without care for all of creation, the poor and vulnerable suffer most. Finally, the Holy Father urges us to an ecological conversion grounded in spiritual conversion. Only by turning back to God can we see our failings, seek God's mercy, and extend his mercy to all of our brothers and sisters with whom we share our common home. 

It is especially poignant that this anniversary comes as the world struggles together against a pandemic that has ravaged families, communities and livelihoods. During this time, we ask God to help us live in a right relationship with him and one another and to bless us with his healing love. 

Receive Daily Meditations and Reflections for Laudato Si' Week