By Vatican News
Pope Francis’ appeal from the Paul VI Hall on Wednesday looked ahead to the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, which takes place each year on 1 September. The theme of this year’s observance is “Let Justice and Peace Flow.”
The Pope recalled that this day marks the beginning of the Season of Creation that will last until 4 October, the feast of St. Francis of Assisi.
As he had announced on 21 August when he received a delegation of lawyers from member countries of the Council of Europe, the Pope revealed that the second part of his encyclical Laudato si' will be published on 4 October.
Siding with the victims of environmental injustice
“On that date, I plan on publishing an exhortation, a second Laudato si',” the Pope said. “Let us join our Christian brothers and sisters in the commitment to care for creation as a sacred gift from the Creator.”
The Pope’s remarks on Wednesday summarized the core of his Message for the World Day, which was made public in May:
“It is necessary to stand with the victims of environmental and climate injustice, striving to end the senseless war on our common home which is a terrible world war. I urge all of you to work and pray for it to abound with life once again.”
Transforming public policy
In the Message, the Pope says we must resolve “to transform our hearts, our lifestyles, and the public policies ruling our societies.”
He also returned to the topic of ecological conversion and the need to no longer consider creation as an object to be exploited, but as a reality to be safeguarded “as a sacred gift from our Creator.”
The Pope's message for the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation insisted on the need to “transform the public policies that govern our societies and shape the lives of young people today and tomorrow.”
Pope Francis emphasized the importance of synodality and expressed his hopes that “in this Season of Creation, as followers of Christ on our shared synodal journey, we may live, work, and pray so that our common home will teem with life once again.”