09/04/2020, 11.13
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Pope urges Cernobbio Forum to focus on need for ecological reconversion and creativity

In his message, Francis affirms that the pandemic has highlighted the unity of the human family and therefore the need for a new model of development. "Now, more than ever, Europe is called to show leadership in a creative effort to emerge from the straits of the technocratic paradigm as applied to politics and the economy."

Vatican City (AsiaNews) - Aiming for an "ecological reconversion" of the economy, "without giving in to the acceleration of time, human and technological processes, but returning to lived and not consumed relationships" and being "creative", to build “New and original paths for the common good”. These are the ideas that Pope Francis suggests in a message to politicians and economists participating in the European House - Ambrosetti Forum, gathered in Cernobbio, published today.

Francis starts from the affirmation that “having failed to show solidarity in wealth and in the sharing of resources, we have learned to experience solidarity in suffering" created by the pandemic. Moreover, it “. It has shown us the greatness of science, but also its limits. It has called into question the scale of values that sets money and power over all else. By forcing us to stay at home together, parents and children, young and old, it has once again made us aware of the joys and difficulties involved in our relationships. ”

"In the face of a future that appears uncertain and full of challenges, especially on the social and economic level, we have been moved to spend this time discerning what is lasting from what is fleeting, what is necessary from what is not. In this situation, economics – oeconomia in its deepest human meaning as the governance of our earthly home – takes on even greater importance, due to its close connection with the concrete life situations of individual men and women. Economics ought to become the expression of a care and concern that does not exclude but seeks to include, that does not demean but seeks to uplift and give life. A care and concern that refuses to sacrifice human dignity to the idols of finance, that does not give rise to violence and inequality, and that uses financial resources not to dominate but to serve (cf. Evangelii Gaudium, 53-60). For genuine profit comes from treasures accessible to all. “That which I truly own is what I can offer to others” (cf. General Audience, 7 November 2018)."

"Where nature and, even more, persons are involved, another way of thinking is needed, one that can broaden our gaze and guide technology towards the service of a different model of development, more healthy, more human, more social and more integral. The present is a time for discernment in light of the principles of ethics and the common good, for the sake of the recovery desired by all. Saint Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus, frequently employs the term “discernment” in his writings, drawing from the great sapiential tradition of the Bible and, above all, the teaching of Jesus of Nazareth. Christ urged all who heard him, and ourselves today, not to stop at externals, but to discern sagely the signs of the times. To do so, two things are demanded, conversion and creativity. We need to experience an ecological conversion, in order to slow down our inhuman pace of consumption and production, and to learn once more how to understand and contemplate nature. To reconnect with the world around us. To work for an ecological retooling of our economy, without yielding to the pressures of time and of human and technological processes, but rather by returning to relationships that are experienced, not consumed. We are also called to be creative, like artisans, devising fresh new ways to pursue the common good. That creativity can only come from openness to the breath of the Spirit, who inspires us to attempt new, timely and indeed bold decisions, as men and women capable of shaping that integral human development to which we all aspire. The creativity of a love that can restore meaning to the present, in order to open it to a better future."

“This conversion and creativity necessarily imply training and encouraging the next generation of economists and entrepreneurs. For this reason, I have invited them to meet from 19 to 21 November next in Assisi, the town of the young Saint Francis, who stripped himself of everything “in order to choose God as the compass of his life, becoming poor with the poor, a brother to all."

Finally, the Pope, referring to the theme of an agenda for Europe, also among those foreseen at the Forum, recalls that seventy years have passed since the Schuman declaration which in 1950 "paved the way for today’s European Union. Now, more than ever, Europe is called to show leadership in a creative effort to emerge from the straits of the technocratic paradigm as applied to politics and the economy. This creative effort must be one of solidarity, the sole antidote to the virus of selfishness, a virus far more potent than Covid-19. Back then, the concern was for solidarity in production; today, solidarity must extend to a more precious good: the human person. The human person must take its rightful place at the heart of our educational, healthcare, social and economic policies. Persons must be welcomed, protected, accompanied and integrated when they come knocking on our doors, seeking a future of hope.” (FP)

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