+39 06 684919 pax@ofm.org

Bibliography

The biblical references listed here are very little compared to the vastness of the materials produced in the world. The titles are limited to those “instruments of necessities” that are properly usable by those who work for the care of the “common home.” Particular attention is given to the documents (of the Church and OFM) and the subsidies (of the Church, of the Order and of other origins) necessary for information, formation, and work in the field of animation, whether it be educational or pastoral.

Order of Friars Minor:

Documents

“The friars, as followers of St. Francis, are bound to lead a radically evangelical life, namely: to live in a spirit of prayer and devotion and in fraternal fellowship; they are to offer a witness of penance and minority; and, in charity towards all mankind, they are to announce the Gospel throughout the whole world and to preach reconciliation, peace and justice by their deeds (cf. Rnb XVII,3); and to show respect for creation.”
Art. 42

The main task of the General Office for Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation, in dependence on the Minister General, is: §1 To ensure that JPIC becomes part of the life and service of the Order by collaborating with the Secretariat for Formation and Studies as well as with the Secretariat for the Missions and Evangelisation, in cooperation with the JPIC Animators and Commissions of all levels.

§2 To educate the Friars on matters regarding JPIC.

Art. 43

§1 The General Office of JPIC is to be helped by the International Council for Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation, constituted in accordance with the norms of the Special Statutes approved by the Definitory General.

§2 Each Conference and Province is to draw up Statutes in which the integration of JPIC into the life and service of the Order is provided for during both initial and ongoing formation as well as for those that are, in a specific way, engaged in JPIC.

Art. 44

§1 A Commission for JPIC, composed of members from each Entity of the Conference, is to be instituted in each Conference. The task and function of the Commission, as well as the norms for the election of its President, are to be established by appropriate Statutes, which require the approval of the Conference.

§2 The said Commissions, in all that regards JPIC, must cooperate in a suitable way with the Franciscan Family, with “Franciscans International”, with the Commissions of the Dioceses and Religious Institutes as well as with the organisations of civil Society that enjoy a good reputation.

Art. 45

§1 Each Province and the other Entities of the Order are to have an Animator of JPIC.

§2 Wherever it is possible, a Council or Commission is to be appointed, which is to help the Minister Provincial and the JPIC Animator in promoting the formation and work of JPIC within the confines of the Province.

§3 The tasks of the Animator of JPIC, who always operates in dependence on the Minister Provincial or Custos, are to be defined in Special Statutes. He will promote and coordinate the integration of JPIC into the life and services of the Province or Custody; and, above all, he will support JPIC undertakings on all levels.

Secretaría general para la Formación y los Estudios, Roma

“La formación a la vida evangélica del hermano menor (CCGG 1 § 2) – al espíritu de oración y devoción, a la vida de comunión fraterna, a la penitencia y la minoridad, a la pobreza y la solidaridad, a la evangelización y la misión, a la acción a favor de la reconciliación, la paz y la justicia – es una senda «orgánica, gradual y coherente» (CCGG 133) que se desarrolla, tanto a nivel personal como comunitario, a lo largo de toda la vida” (n. 62)”.

“Todos los hermanos y candidatos sean formados a predicar con las obras la paz y la justicia venciendo el mal con la práctica del bien (cf. CCGG 68 § 19), respeten la creación como signo del Creador induciendo a los otros a ser constructores de paz y a salvaguardar la creación (cf. CCGG 71). (n. 86).

Deseamos destacar la recurrencia de alguna de nuestras palabras en este documento: justicia y paz, paz y justicia: 12x; creacion:6x; reconciliación [paz]: 7x

Fratres Minores in Nostra Aetate, Document of the General Chapter OFM, Assisi.

“The general Definitorium is to draw up a Study Guide on the care of creation that will have a solid biblical, ecclesial, Franciscan and scientific foundation, and will give guidance so that our Entities might be able to respond to the ecological challenges of our time” (n. 10).

“Each Entity, through the Moderator of Ongoing Formation, the Animator for Evangelisation, and the Animator of JPIC, following the guidelines of the general Study Guide, is to prepare a programme to help ensure that this dimension becomes a part of our lifestyle and of the life and pastoral and social activity of the Entities. This objective will be evaluated in the meetings of the Presidents of the Conferences with the general Definitorium” (n. 11).

Animation Guidelines of the General Definitory for the years 2016 and 2017 [“Brothers and Minor towards … Justice, Peace and the Integrity of Creation”, pp. 19-23], General Curia Friars Minor, Rome 2016

“During 2017 two important invitations to action will claim our attention. The first, Pope Francis’ Encyclical Laudato si’, comes from the Church and the second comes from the Franciscan Family, which celebrates the fifth centenary of Ite vos – also called the Bulla unionis” (p. 19).

“Peace, justice and the preservation of creation are three absolutely interconnected themes… as part of the universe, all of us are linked by unseen bonds and together form a kind of universal family, a sublime communion which fills us with a sacred, affectionate and humble respect” (LS nos. 92.89).

Communications The newsletter of the JPIC Office OFM, Rome.

Holy See:

Social Doctrine

Encyclical of Leo XIII on the issue of labor, 15.05.1891

“The Church’s concern for social matters certainly did not begin with that document, for the Church has never failed to show interest in society. Nonetheless, the Encyclical Letter Rerum Novarum marks the beginning of a new path. (…) Rerum Novarum became the document inspiring Christian activity in the social sphere and the point of reference for this activity. The Encyclical’s central theme is the just ordering of society, in view of which there is the obligation to identify criteria of judgment that will help to evaluate existing socio-political systems and to suggest lines of action for their appropriate transformation” (Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church, nn. 87.89).

Encyclical of Paul VI, 26.03.1967

It was he [Paul VI] who told precisely the meaning of “integral development” (cfr. n. 21) in the encyclical, and it was he who proposed the synthetic and fortunate formula: «development of individual man and humanity as a whole. » (n. 14).

Enciclica di John Paul II on the 90° anniversary of the Rerum novarum, 14.09.1981

“Since 15 May of the present year was the ninetieth anniversary of the publication by the great Pope of the «social question», Leo XIII, of the decisively important Encyclical which begins with the words Rerum Novarum, I wish to devote this document to human work and, even more, to man in the vast context of the reality of work” (n. 1).

Encyclical of John Paul II on the 20° anniversary of the Populorum progressio, 30.12.1987

“In this way I wish principally to achieve two objectives of no little importance: on the one hand, to pay homage to this historic document of Paul VI and to its teaching; on the other hand, following in the footsteps of my esteemed predecessors in the See of Peter, to reaffirm the continuity of the social doctrine as well as its constant renewal” (n. 3).

Encyclical of John Paul II on the centenary of the Rerum novarum, 1.05.1991

“The present Encyclical seeks to show the fruitfulness of the principles enunciated by Leo XIII, which belong to the Church’s doctrinal patrimony and, as such, involve the exercise of her teaching authority. But pastoral solicitude also prompts me to propose an analysis of some events of recent history” (n. 3).

Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, 29.06.2004, III ed.

“This work also shows the value of Catholic social doctrine as an instrument of evangelization (cf. Centesimus Annus, 54), because it places the human person and society in relationship with the light of the Gospel. The principles of the Church’s social doctrine, which are based on the natural law, are then seen to be confirmed and strengthened, in the faith of the Church, by the Gospel of Christ.

In this light, men and women are invited, above all, to discover themselves as transcendent beings, in every dimension of their lives, including those related to social, economic and political contexts. Faith brings to fullness the meaning of the family, which, founded on marriage between one man and one woman, constitutes the first and vital cell of society. It moreover sheds light on the dignity of work, which, as human activity destined to bring human beings to fulfilment, has priority over capital and confirms their rightful claim to share in the fruits that result from work” (Card. A. Sodano, Segretary of State).

Address of Francis to the Partecipants to the Conference organized by Decastery PIHD, 4.04.2017

“What is meant, today and in the near future, by ‘integral development’, that is, the development of each man and of the whole man? In the footsteps of Paul vi, perhaps in the very word integrate — so dear to me — we can identify a fundamental direction for the new Dicastery. Let us look at a few aspects together.”

Peace

Message of Paul VI, 8.12.1967

“We address Ourself to all men of good will to exhort them to celebrate The Day of Peace, throughout the world, on the first day of the year, January 1, 1968. It is Our desire that then, every year, this commemoration be repeated as a hope and as a promise, at the beginning of the calendar which measures and outlines the path of human life in time, that Peace with its just and beneficent equilibrium may dominate the development of events to come.”

Message of Benedect XVI for the celebration of the 45th World Day of Peace [1st Jan. 2012], 8.12.2011

“In this shadow, however, human hearts continue to wait for the dawn of which the Psalmist speaks. Because this expectation is particularly powerful and evident in young people, my thoughts turn to them and to the contribution which they can and must make to society. I would like therefore to devote this message for the XLV World Day of Peace to the theme of education: «Educating Young People in Justice and Peace», in the conviction that the young, with their enthusiasm and idealism, can offer new hope to the world” (n. 1).

Message of Francis for the celebration of the 50th World Day of Peace [1st Jan. 2017], 8.12.2016

 “On this occasion, I would like to reflect on nonviolence as a style of politics for peace. I ask God to help all of us to cultivate nonviolence in our most personal thoughts and values. May charity and nonviolence govern how we treat each other as individuals, within society and in international life. When victims of violence are able to resist the temptation to retaliate, they become the most credible promotors of nonviolent peacemaking. In the most local and ordinary situations and in the international order, may nonviolence become the hallmark of our decisions, our relationships and our actions, and indeed of political life in all its forms” (n. 1).

in occasion the opening of the work of the G20 Summit, Letter of Francis, 29.06.2017

 It contains an explicit reference to the Letter of Pope Benedict XV (1917) reported above (cf. also the Statement by cardinal Pio Laghi, after the meeting with G. Bush, on behalf of John Paul II, 2003) and of which he resumes the same anguished tone: “The history of humanity, in our own day too, presents us with a vast panorama of current and potential conflicts.  War, however, is never a solution.   As the hundredth anniversary of Pope Benedict XV’s Letter to the Leaders of the Warring Peoples draws near, I feel bound to ask that the world put an end to all these useless slaughters.”

Message of Francis for the celebration of the 51st World Day of Peace [1st Jan. 2018], 13.11.2017

“We know that it is not enough to open our hearts to the suffering of others. Much more remains to be done before our brothers and sisters can once again live peacefully in a safe home. Welcoming others requires concrete commitment, a network of assistance and goodwill, vigilant and sympathetic attention, the responsible management of new and complex situations that at times compound numerous existing problems, to say nothing of resources, which are always limited” (n. 1).

Fake news and journalism for peace. Message of Francis for the 52nd World Communication Day [13rd May 2018], 24.01.2018

“The best antidotes to falsehoods are not strategies, but people: people who are not greedy but ready to listen, people who make the effort to engage in sincere dialogue so that the truth can emerge; people who are attracted by goodness and take responsibility for how they use language (…) I would like, then, to invite everyone to promote a journalism of peace, (…) A journalism created by people for people, one that is at the service of all, especially those – and they are the majority in our world – who have no voice” (n. 4).

2018 Address of the Pope at the conclusion of the dialogue [Meeting of Pope Francis with the Leaders of the churches and the Christian communities in Middle East], 07.07.2018

“Encouraged by one another, we have engaged in fraternal dialogue. It has been a sign of our need to pursue encounter and unity without being afraid of our differences. So it is with peace: it too must be cultivated in the parched soil of conflict and discord, because today, in spite of everything, there is no real alternative to peacemaking.”

Message of His Holiness Pope FRANCIS for the Celebration of the 52nd WORLD DAY OF PEACE

“Politics is an essential means of building human community and institutions, but when political life is not seen as a form of service to society as a whole, it can become a means of oppression, marginalization and even destruction.” (n. 2)

All the Messages of John Paul II for the World Day of Peace

All the Messages of Benedect XVI for the World Day of Peace

All the Messages of Francis for the World Day of Peace

The Poor

Message of Francis of the 1st World Day of the Poor [19 Nov. 2017], 13.06.2017

“I invite the whole Church, and men and women of good will everywhere, to turn their gaze on this day to all those who stretch out their hands and plead for our help and solidarity.  They are our brothers and sisters, created and loved by the one Heavenly Father.  This Day is meant, above all, to encourage believers to react against a culture of discard and waste, and to embrace the culture of encounter.  At the same time, everyone, independent of religious affiliation, is invited to openness and sharing with the poor through concrete signs of solidarity and fraternity.  God created the heavens and the earth for all; yet sadly some have erected barriers, walls and fences, betraying the original gift meant for all humanity, with none excluded” (n. 6).

Message of Francis for the 2nd World Day of the Poor [18 Nov. 2018], 13.06.2018

“The poor are the first to recognize God’s presence and to testify to his closeness in their lives. God remains faithful to his promise; and even in the darkness of the night, he does not withhold the warmth of his love and consolation. However, for the poor to overcome their oppressive situation, they need to sense the presence of brothers and sisters who are concerned for them and, by opening the doors of their hearts and lives, make them feel like friends and family. Only in this way can the poor discover «the saving power at work in their lives» and «put them at the centre of the Church’s pilgrim way»” (n. 6).

All the Messages of Francis for the World Day of the Poor

Migrants and Refugees

Message of Francis for the 104th World Day of Migrants and Refugees [14 Jan. 2018], 15.08.2017

“«You shall treat the stranger who sojourns with you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God» (Lv 19,34).

In this regard, I wish to reaffirm that «our shared response may be articulated by four verbs: to welcome, to protect, to promote and to integrate».”

Message of Francis to the participants to the 3rd International Conference of “Catholic Theological Ethics in the World Church” [26-29 Jul. 2018], 11.07.2018

“This challenge [ecology] – as it emerges from the Encyclical Laudato Si’ – is not simply one of many, but the broader backdrop for an understanding of both ecological ethics and social ethics. For this reason, your concern for the issue of migrants and refugees is very serious and provokes a metanoia that can foster ethical and theological reflection, even before inspiring suitable pastoral attitudes and responsible and carefully planned political policies.”

All the Messages of Francis for the World Day of Migrants and Refugees

Creation

2015 Establishment of the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation [1st September], Letter of Francis, 6.08.2015

“Sharing the concern of my beloved brother, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, for the future of creation (cf. Laudato Si’, 7-9), and at the suggestion of his representative, Metropolitan Ioannis of Pergamum, who took part in the presentation of the Encyclical Laudato Si’ on care for our common home, I wish to inform you that I have decided to institute in the Catholic Church the “World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation” which, beginning this year, is to be celebrated on 1 September, as has been the custom in the Orthodox Church for some time.”

Message of Francis for the celebration of the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation 1.09.2016

“United with our Orthodox brothers and sisters, and with the support of other Churches and Christian communities, the Catholic Church today marks the “World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation”. This Day offers “individual believers and communities a fitting opportunity to reaffirm their personal vocation to be stewards of creation, to thank God for the wonderful handiwork which he has entrusted to our care, and to implore his help for the protection of creation as well as his pardon for the sins committed against the world in which we live.”

2017 Joint Message of Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartolomeo on the World Day of Prayer for Creation, 01.09.2017

“We urgently appeal to those in positions of social and economic, as well as political and cultural,responsibility to hear the cry of the earth and to attend to the needs of the marginalized, but above all to respond to the plea of millions and support the consensus of the world for the healing of our wounded creation. We are convinced that there can be no sincere and enduring resolution to the challenge of the ecological crisis and climate change unless the response is concerted and collective, unless the responsibility is shared and accountable, unless we give priority to solidarity and service.”

Ocean

Economy

Considerations for an Ethical Discernment Regarding Some Aspects of the Present Economic-Financial System, Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith– Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, 06.01.2018

“Economic and financial issues draw our attention today as never before because of the growing influence of financial markets on the material well-being of most of humankind. What is needed, on the one hand, is an appropriate regulation of the dynamics of the markets and, on the other hand, a clear ethical foundation that assures a well-being realized through the quality of human relationships rather than merely through economic mechanisms that by themselves cannot attain it” (n. 1).

Encyclical Laudato si’  – Ecology

Documents

Encyclica of Francis on the care of Common Home, 24.05.2015.

“An Encyclical for Catholics, of course, but truly may also speak to everyone, because our common home concerns every human being and no one can be called out of responsibility for it; a gift and a provocation to the whole of humanity, to which it seems to me no one can morally escape. Like the saint whose name he bears, Pope Francis was able to give voice in these pages to the human family” (Arch. B. Forte).

2015 Press Conference for the presentation of the Encyclical Laudato si’, 18.06.2015

“Sono intervenuti Sua Eminenza il Cardinale Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson, Presidente del Pontificio Consiglio della Giustizia e della Pace; Sua Eminenza il Metropolita di Pergamo John Zizioulas, in rappresentanza del Patriarcato Ecumenico e della Chiesa Ortodossa; il Prof. Hans Joachim (John) Schellnhuber, Fondatore e Direttore del Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research; la Prof.ssa Carolyn Woo, CEO e Presidente del Catholic Relief Services e già Decano del Mendoza College of Business, University of Notre Dame (USA); e ha portato la sua testimonianza la maestra Valeria Martano, insegnante delle periferie romane”. “It was intervened by His Eminence Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson, President of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace; His Eminence the Metropolitan of Pergamon John Zizioulas, representing the Ecumenical Patriarch and the Orthodox Church; Prof. Hans Joachim (John) Schellnhuber, Founder and Director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research; Prof. Carolyn Woo, CEO and President of Catholic Relief Services and former Dean of the Mendoza College of Business, University of Notre Dame (USA); and the Prof. Valeria Martano, teacher of the Roman suburbs, brought her testimony.”

Contributions to the reading of the Encyclical

Inter-Franciscan JPIC Commission (Romans VI), Rome 2015

“This Study Guide is offered in a special way to the Franciscan Family and to those with whom we work. Pope Francis makes it clear that his inspiration, not only for the encyclical but for his papacy as well, is Saint Francis of Assisi. In the letter he comments early on: “I believe that Saint Francis is the example par excellence of care for the vulnerable and of an integral ecology lived out joyfully and authentically.” We are invited to embody this message in the world today, living out the example of our model Saint Francis, and hearing clearly the cry of the poor and vulnerable and the cry of the earth.”

The Global Catholic Climate Movement, 2016

“This free guide will be a great resource for your parish to bring Laudato Si’ to life. Developed in cooperation with GCCM’s partners around the globe, the guide is directed at Catholic parishes globally to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) by addressing actions in relation to parish operations, the congregation, and the broader community. Inspired by Catholic Social Teaching, the Eco-Parish guide offers an active response to Pope Francis’ call for climate change action in his encyclical, Laudato Si’”.

Specialized site on the subject.

“We are a community of hundreds of thousands of Catholics like you, in response to Pope Francis’ invitation to act on the Encyclical Laudato Si’. The community is made up of lay people, priests, bishops and a global network of member organizations working together to tackle the climate change crisis.”

 A little bit of history: the [ecumenical] path towards “the safeguarding of creation”

Message of John Paul II, for celebration of the World Day of Peace 1990, 8.12.1989

“In our day, there is a growing awareness that world peace is threatened not only by the arms race, regional conflicts and continued injustices among peoples and nations, but also by a lack of due respect for nature, by the plundering of natural resources and by a progressive decline in the quality of life. The sense of precariousness and insecurity that such a situation engenders is a seedbed for collective selfishness, disregard for others and dishonesty.

Faced with the widespread destruction of the environment, people everywhere are coming to understand that we cannot continue to use the goods of the earth as we have in the past. The public in general as well as political leaders are concerned about this problem, and experts from a wide range of disciplines are studying its causes. Moreover, a new ecological awareness is beginning to emerge which, rather than being downplayed, ought to be encouraged to develop into concrete programmes and initiatives.” (n. 1).

“In 1979, I proclaimed Saint Francis of Assisi as the heavenly Patron of those who promote ecology (cf. Apostolic Letter Inter SanctosAAS 71 [1979], 1509f.). He offers Christians an example of genuine and deep respect for the integrity of creation. As a friend of the poor who was loved by God’s creatures, Saint Francis invited all of creation – animals, plants, natural forces, even Brother Sun and Sister Moon – to give honour and praise to the Lord. The poor man of Assisi gives us striking witness that when we are at peace with God we are better able to devote ourselves to building up that peace with all creation which is inseparable from peace among all peoples.” (n. 16).

1992 Declaration on Evironment and Development

It was the first world conference of the Heads of the States on the environment, an unprecedented event also in terms of media impact and the political and development choices that followed it.

“Human beings are at the centre of concerns for sustainable development. They are entitled to a healthy and productive life in harmony with nature” (Principio 1).“In order to achieve sustainable development, environmental protection shall constitute an integral part of the development process and cannot be considered in isolation from it” (Principio 4).

2015 Establishment of the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation [1st September], Letter of Francis, 6.08.2015

Sharing the concern of my beloved brother, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, for the future of creation (cf. Laudato Si’, 7-9), and at the suggestion of his representative, Metropolitan Ioannis of Pergamum, who took part in the presentation of the Encyclical Laudato Si’ on care for our common home, I wish to inform you that I have decided to institute in the Catholic Church the “World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation” which, beginning this year, is to be celebrated on 1 September, as has been the custom in the Orthodox Church for some time.

 

Climate Change

Rio Conference [COP 11], Jun. 1992

It was the first world conference of the Heads of the States on the environment, an unprecedented event also in terms of media impact and the political and development choices that followed it.

“Human beings are at the centre of concerns for sustainable development. They are entitled to a healthy and productive life in harmony with nature” (Principio 1).“In order to achieve sustainable development, environmental protection shall constitute an integral part of the development process and cannot be considered in isolation from it” (Principio 4).

[COP 21], 12 Dec. 2015

“This Agreement, in enhancing the implementation of the Convention, including its objectives, aims to strengthen the global response to the threat of climate change, in the context of sustainable development and efforts to eradicate poverty, including by …”

The JPIC office in the Church

From the Pontifical commission JP (1967) to the Dicastery PIHD (2016)

The background (the 2nd Vatican Council)
The wish of the Second Vatican Council to create a special organization:

“The council, considering the immensity of the hardships which still afflict the greater part of mankind today, regards it as most opportune that an organism of the universal Church be set up in order that both the justice and love of Christ toward the poor might be developed everywhere. The role of such an organism would be to stimulate the Catholic community to promote progress in needy regions and international social justice.” (n. 90).

Encyclical of Paul VI, 26.03.1967

“Even more recently, we sought to fulfill the wishes of the Council and to demonstrate the Holy See’s concern for the developing nations. To do this, we felt it was necessary to add another pontifical commission to the Church’s central administration. The purpose of this commission is “to awaken in the People of God full awareness of their mission today.” In this way they can further the progress of poorer nations and international social justice, as well as help less developed nations to contribute to their own development.”

The name of this commission, Justice and Peace, aptly describes its program and its goal. We are sure that all men of good will want to join Our fellow Catholics and fellow Christians in carrying out this program. So today We earnestly urge all men to pool their ideas and their activities for man’s complete development and the development of all mankind” (n. 5).

New responsibilities of the Churches in the field of Justice, World Synod of Bishops, 1971

“Gathered from the whole world, in communion with all who believe in Christ and with the entire human family, and opening our hearts to the Spirit who is the whole of creation new, we have questioned ourselves about the mission of the People of God to further justice in the world” (Introduction).

The Pontifical Council (John Paul II)
Establishment of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, Apostolic Constitution of John Paul II, 28.06.1988, nos. 142-144

“My concern has been that of resolutely going forward so that the conformation and the activity of the Curia correspond ever more to the ecclesiology of the Second Vatican Council, are more and more clearly suitable for the attainment of the pastoral ends of the conformation of the Curia, and meet in form ever more concrete to the needs of ecclesial and civil society” (Introduction, 13).

The current Dicastery (Francesco)
Apostolic Letter in the form of Motu Proprio with which the Department for the Integral Human Development Service of Francis is established, 17.08.2016

“In all her being and actions, the Church is called to promote the integral development of the human person in the light of the Gospel. This development takes place by attending to the inestimable goods of justice, peace, and the care of creation. The Successor of the Apostle Peter, in his work of affirming these values, is continuously adapting the institutions which collaborate with him, so that they may better meet the needs of the men and women whom they are called to serve.

So that the Holy See may be solicitous in these areas, as well as in those regarding health and charitable works, I institute the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development. This Dicastery will be competent particularly in issues regarding migrants, those in need, the sick, the excluded and marginalized, the imprisoned and the unemployed, as well as victims of armed conflict, natural disasters, and all forms of slavery and torture.”

Motu proprio of Francis, 17.08.2016

Task, Mission, Activities (Art. 3)

  • 1. The Dicastery studies the social teaching of the Church and works to make it widely known and implemented, and so that social, economic and political relations are increasingly imbued with the spirit of the Gospel.
  • 2. The Dicastery collects information and research in the areas of justice and peace, the development of peoples, the promotion and defense of human dignity and human rights, such as rights pertaining to work, including that of minors; the phenomenon of migration and the exploitation of migrants; human trafficking and enslavement; imprisonment, torture and capital punishment; disarmament and arms control as well as armed conflicts and their effects on the civilian population and the natural environment (humanitarian law). It evaluates these data and informs the episcopal agencies of the conclusions drawn, so that they may intervene directly where appropriate.
  • 3. The Dicastery strives to ensure that local Churches provide effective and appropriate assistance both material and spiritual – if necessary also by means of suitable pastoral structures – to the sick, refugees, exiles, migrants, the stateless, circus workers, nomads and other itinerant populations.
  • 4. The Dicastery encourages and coordinates initiatives of Catholic institutions committed to respecting the dignity of every person and affirming the values of justice and peace, and to helping people in need, especially those institutions that help respond to the most pressing needs including disaster relief.
  • 5. In fulfilling its mission, the Dicastery may establish relationships with associations, institutes and non-governmental organizations, including those outside the Catholic Church, who are committed to promoting justice and peace. It may also enter into discussion with representatives of civil governments and other international public institutions, in order to promote study, deepen knowledge, and public awareness regarding matters within its competence, while respecting the competencies of other offices of the Roman Curia.
  • 6. The Dicastery is committed to fostering among peoples: sensitivity for peace, commitment to justice and solidarity with those who are most vulnerable such as migrants and refugees, particularly through the celebrations of the World Day of Peace, the World Day of Migrants,the World Day of the Sick.

Books for consultation and study

2008 Delio I. – K. Warner – P. Wood, Care for Creation: A Franciscan Spirituality of the Earth, St. Anthony Messenger Press, 2008

This book takes both a theological and practical approach to developing a Franciscan spirituality of the earth. Four sections highlight the distinct relationships creation has with the world: incarnation, community, contemplation and conversion. In this meticulously researched book, the authors propose ways in which we can all understand our own roles in relationship to the Earth and ways in which we can make it better. Each section offers reflective action opportunities designed to bring the book’s ecological and theological insights into the reader’s daily life and nurture a Franciscan spirituality of the earth. Prayers, meditations, spiritual practices and group activities are offered which provide a practical hands-on approach to reconnecting with the earth and acting in right relationship.

Franciscan Roots of the Laudato Si’, Ed. Tau Publishing, Phoenix 2017

This book introduces us to the Franciscan vision of ecology which, in many respects, seems to have inspired the encyclical Laudato Si’. Assuming an integral and inclusive vision of ecology, the book analyzes today’s global ethical challenges, putting them in relation with the experience of Francis of Assisi and with the philosophical-theological reflection of the Franciscan Tradition. It emphasizes the need to overcome the current technocratic paradigm and the throwaway culture, which fosters the Well-Having over Well-Being and breaks the ties that bind us to creatures.