We are happy to present to you some of the talks that were given at the five-day SEDOS Residential Seminar 2021, which had been delayed from last year, and had to be held on-line because of the Covid-19 health crisis. The theme of the Seminar was “Living Green Mission”, which was very timely after the Synod of Bishops for the Pan-Amazon Region of last year and just before the Laudato Sì Week 2021 organized to celebrate the five-year old Encyclical Letter of the Holy Father Francis. The presence of two Speakers from the Dicastery for Integral Human Development (Rome), Fr. Joshtram Kureethadam, SDB, and Fr. Augusto Zampini Davies, was therefore much appreciated.
The Seminar structure and choice of Speakers were worked out by Fr. Chris Chaplin, SMC, Sr. Kathleen Storms, SSND, and me. A great Summary of the Seminar was graciously made by CICM-sisters, Sr. Mary Dasari and Sr. Yolanda Florentinoy.
Besides the opening session and the closing session, three Subthemes were discussed: Education, Sustainability, and Spirituality. These three aspects are indeed essential when it comes to living and doing mission in a green way. We have to form people and missionaries to become more aware of the difficulties the ecological crisis is creating, not only on a material level, but also in the quality of our lives. Looking therefore at forms of sustainable farming, constructing homes, is important. Even the corporate world has to control its ecological footprint by law now. We are supported in doing this by our Christian Creation spirituality. Experiencing God in nature makes one automatically a “guardian of nature”. And we can know God from his Creation, as the Apostle Paul stated long ago. We only have to open ourselves to the beauty and complexity of Creation to discover the great mind that must have been – and still is – behind all that we see, hear, feel, taste, and create.
Religious Missionary Institutes are making their contribution to a greener world for all. Let us therefore also join in this effort to incorporate the “Laudato Sì Goals” in our way of living and doing Mission today.