April 21, 2022

In this issue

Friday, April 22 is Earth Day!
By Lissa Romell
Friday, April 22, is Earth Day, a perfect opportunity to celebrate and live more deeply into Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si’: On Care for Our Common Home!  Earth Day and Laudato Si’ remind us of the beauty of our common home, of the sense of awe God’s creation inspires in our hearts.  They call us to see God both in the dewdrop and in our brothers and sisters, and to respond.

Just What Is Integral Ecology?
Key to Laudato Si’ is the concept of Integral Ecology.  You may have heard this term lately on our Passionist social media and in our newsletters, and perhaps wondered “Just what is Integral Ecology?” At its most basic, Integral Ecology is responding to both the cry of Earth and the cry of the poor.  “We are faced not with two separate crises: one environmental and the other social, but rather with one complex crisis which is both social and environmental. Strategies for a solution demand an integrated approach to combating poverty, restoring dignity to the excluded, and at the same time protecting nature” (#139).

We invite you to watch this helpful 5-minute video produced by Eco-Catholic to learn even more:
What Can We Do?
In union with the world-wide Catholic Church, our Passionist Superior General, Fr. Joachim Rego, CP, and our Provincial, Fr. Joe Moons, CP, have called us to embark on a seven-year journey toward creating and implementing a Laudato Si’ Action Plan based on the 7 goals of the Laudato Si’ Action Platform (diagram to the right).  The call is both personal and collective.  

Collectively, one of our first steps in Holy Cross Province is participation in the Passionist Congregational program, Passion of the Earth, Wisdom of the Cross.  This is a six-session program developed especially for the Passionist Family to engage in Laudato Si’ and renew our charism in the spirit of the 300th Jubilee celebration. In the introductory program brochure, Fr. Joachim describes the goal of the program as “ecological and evangelical conversion inspired by our shared contemplative engagement with Laudato Si’ in light of our Passionist charism.  We desire to listen and hear the cry of the Earth and the cry of the poor, and to find concrete ways to act in favor of justice, solidarity and peace."

Several communities across the Province have already begun the conversation, and more Zoom opportunities for the whole Passionist Family to engage will be announced soon.  You can learn more about the program and download copies of the session brochures here (English // Spanish). To receive hard copies of the brochures and for more information on the program and Laudato Si’ events and resources in Holy Cross Province, we invite you to contact Patty Gillis, our Province Laudato Si’ animator, at or 313-399-8320.

For ideas on simple actions we can all take to live the integral ecology of Laudato Si’, both personally and in our communities, we invite you to take a look at the following primer on sustainability. Making Laudato Si’ a reality across our Province is as easy as choosing one or two actions, like eating seasonal local food, using LED bulbs or advocating for equitable housing in your community, and trying them out.

On this Earth Day, let us renew our commitment to personal and communal conversion, trusting in the grace of God to help us respond generously to the call of Laudato Si’ and build a present and future that is sustainable and just.

The challenges we are facing at this time give us the opportunity to be prophetic:
to be enlightened by the Gospel and, thus, renewed in Christ.
It is a time to read in the ‘signs of the times’ God’s desire for us:
“to act justly, to love tenderly, and to walk humbly with God”
(Micah 6:8).

 ~Fr. Joachim Rego, CP, CRUC Province Assembly, June 2021

Ladauto Si’ in Action
We’d love to hear from you! We invite you to click through to our Earth Day Action survey and share one or two of the things you would like to commit to in making Laudato Si’ a reality in Holy Cross Province. We will share the results in a future edition of this Newsletter. 

Your examination of conscience should simply be a glance at the marvelous mercies God has shown you, at the gifts he shares with you, but which you have soiled with the stains of your imperfections. Return them to him who gave them to you, but with a humble and contrite heart, that he may purify them in the fire of his love.

If you would like to share your thoughts, ideas or reactions from anything in this newsletter, we would love to hear from you!

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