‘Laudato Si’ Tree of Life resource launched for Parishes, Schools & Catholic organisations

Posted on Jun 7, 2016 in Inspiration, News, Parishes, Schools, Youth
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landscapetreeoflifeCatholic Earthcare Australia’s 2016 resource has been launched on World Environment Day to encourage the community to celebrate the first Anniversary of the papal encyclical Laudato Si’ by coming together to experience dialogue and stimulate action on caring for our common home.

Catholics are being invited to write down their actions about caring for creation and bring them together in the form of a new ‘Tree of Life’ resource. “The ‘Tree of Life’ is a wonderful opportunity to share the message of the Pope’s encyclical, Laudato Si’ and to enable dialogue and action within local Catholic communities,” says Jacqui Remond, Director of Catholic Earthcare Australia, the ecological agency of the Catholic Church in Australia.

The resource is simple, easy and economical to use:  a downloadable pdf is printed and placed in the configuration of a tree in a central location for the community, such as in the parish church, school hall or reception area of a church agency.  The local community is invited to write on leaf-shaped paper the actions they commit to taking to care for creation and add it to the tree.  Gradually, a tree full of leaves is created, embodying the action plan of the community and available for all to see and collectively enact.

“It’s a really great activity that brings everyone together – it’s so simple and easy to use” says Simon Habel, Program Manager at Catholic Earthcare Australia, adding “each tree will be unique to its community, with many different ways it can grow.”

Catholic Earthcare Australia launched the Tree of Life resource last Saturday, June 4th, during the Archdiocesan Social Justice Gathering, organized by the Justice and Peace Office of the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney.  Children from St Columba’s Primary School at Leichhardt North, where the gathering was held, helped by creating a ‘Laudato Si’ Tree of Life’ in the Parish Hall.

“There are lots of wonderful messages, prayers and pledges from the children,” observed Simon Habel, pointing to one example on the wall:  ‘[w]e all need a world that has clean air and clean water.  Let’s do our best to protect our world.’

Catholic Earthcare’s 2016 resource was created with the first Anniversary of Laudato Si’ in mind and is designed to encourage the community to move into action in 2016 on caring for our common home. Available for download and implementation worldwide from the Catholic Earthcare website, the ‘Tree of Life’ resource includes a prayer card, gospel reflections, theological insights from Monsignor Denis Edwards and the Tree of Life activity.

Media Contact:

Ms Jacqui Remond, National Director, Catholic Earthcare Australia, Telephone: 0413 715 375.

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Important Announcement

Catholic Earthcare is the part of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference which promotes ecological conversion to achieve a loving and sustainable relationship with the natural world. It uses environmental education, national and international links and advocacy to achieve this goal.

In May 2017, the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference decided to incorporate Catholic Earthcare Australia into its sister agency, Caritas Australia. This change was made to strengthen the capacity of Catholic Earthcare Australia, particularly in advocating and educating about the principles of Holy Father’s 2015 encyclical, Laudato Si, and to achieve synergies with Caritas Australia’s extensive education and advocacy work around Australia, including parishes, schools and the wider Catholic community on environmental issues such as climate change.

Caritas Australia is the Church’s international aid and development agency.  As part of the global Caritas confederation operating in 190 countries, it works alongside marginalised communities in many countries and with 11 First Australian agencies here in Australia.  Promoting the principles of Laudato Si is at the centre of the global confederation and of Caritas Australia.

This website is being refined to reflect the new administrative arrangements for Catholic Earthcare Australia. For all enquiries in relation to the work of Catholic Earthcare Australia or to request assistance, please call  1800 024 413 or email CatholicEarthcare@caritas.org.au.

Thank you for your ongoing support of Catholic Earthcare Australia and your commitment to combating climate change and protecting the environment and ecosystems from degradation and pollution.