Ongoing Study of Laudato Sí
The Sisters of the US Province committed themselves to a study of Laudato Si. As part of this ongoing study, their Christmas Assembly included two guest speakers: Father Bill Cleves, a longtime friend of the community and a highly respected philosopher/scholar, and Sr. Kathy Sherman, CSJ, a liturgical musician and composer.
Fr. Cleves began with a philosophical overview of Laudato Si, presenting it against the backdrop of Gaudium et Spes, because doing so leads one to ask “why?” And asking “why?” leads deeper into God the Creator, in whose image and likeness women and men are made. He continued with a summary of each chapter of the encyclical, and challenged the participants to remember, as Joseph Spalding stated, “we did not inherit the Earth from our parents, we borrowed it from our children.”
Sr. Kathy, with song, her reflections, and small group sharing, led the Sisters and Associates to think about the place of human persons in this beautiful world God has created. In discussing the reality of climate change, she asked that each participant reflect on the question “what did you do once you knew?” As a finale, Sr. Kathy taught her song “Touch the Earth”. The day ended on the hopeful note of this song, that “God has given us the power to create the world anew if we touch the earth together, me and you. The time is here, the time is now. We can change things”.