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    » 06/05/2013, 00.00

    VATICAN

    Pope: counter the culture of waste, man not money must "cultivate and care” for Creation



    Today’s General Audience is dedicated to World Environment Day. "Men and women are sacrificed to the idols of profit and consumption", now a child who dies of hunger "is normal," whereas if the stock market falls it is "a tragedy." "The person is no longer perceived as a primary value to be respected and protected, especially if poor or disabled, if not yet useful - such as the unborn child - or no longer needed - such as the elderly." "Throwing food away is like stealing from the tables of the hungry”.

    Vatican City (AsiaNews) - Cultivating and caring for creation, countering "the culture of waste and disposable" - goods, food, but also people - to promote a "culture of solidarity and of encounter" that places the human person - which  "today is in danger" - at the center, because God has given the task of  cultivating and caring for creation to man and woman, and not "money", whereas today a child who dies of hunger " is normal, "whereas if the stock market falls it is" a tragedy. " And remember that " throwing food away is like stealing from the tables of the poor, the hungry."

    "Human ecology and environmental ecology walk together" is the message that Pope Francis  sends out into the world, reflecting on today's World Environment Day at his general audience. 70 thousand people were present and as has become tradition, Pope Francis took a long tour among them in his open topped, white jeep: he kissed children, caught a rosary thrown to him by one of the faithful and, in addition to almost normal exchange of white skullcap, he also put on a red cap offered him by one of those present.

     "When we talk about the environment, about creation, my thoughts turn to the first pages of the Bible, the Book of Genesis, which states that God placed man and woman on earth to cultivate and care for it (cf. 2:15). And the question comes to my mind: What does cultivating and caring for the earth mean? Are we truly cultivating and caring for creation? Or are we exploiting and neglecting it? The verb "to cultivate" reminds me of the care that the farmer has for his land so that it bear fruit, and it is shared: how much attention, passion and dedication! Cultivating and caring for creation is God's indication given to each one of us not only at the beginning of history; it is part of His project; it means nurturing the world with responsibility and transforming it into a garden, a habitable place for everyone. Benedict XVI recalled several times that this task entrusted to us by God the Creator requires us to grasp the rhythm and logic of creation. But we are often driven by pride of domination, of possessions, manipulation, of exploitation; we do not "care" for  it,  we do not respect it, we do not consider it as a free gift that we must care for. We are losing the attitude of wonder, contemplation, listening to creation; thus we are no longer able to read what Benedict XVI calls "the rhythm  of the love story of God and man." Why does this happen? Why do we think and live in a horizontal manner, we have moved away from God, we no longer read His signs".

    "But to "cultivate and care" encompasses not only the relationship between us and the environment, between man and creation, it also regards human relationships. The Popes have spoken of human ecology, closely linked to environmental ecology. We are living in a time of crisis: we see this in the environment, but above all we see this in mankind. The human person is in danger: this is certain, the human person is in danger today, here is the urgency of human ecology! And it is a serious danger because the cause of the problem is not superficial but profound: it is not just a matter of economics, but of ethics and anthropology. The Church has stressed this several times, and many say, yes, that's right, it's true ... but the system continues as before, because it is dominated by the dynamics of an economy and finance that lack ethics".

    "Man is not in charge today, money is in charge, money rules. God our Father did not give the task of caring for the earth to money, but to us, to men and women: we have this task! Instead, men and women are sacrificed to the idols of profit and consumption: it is the "culture of waste." If you break a computer it is a tragedy, but poverty, the needs, the dramas of so many people end up becoming the norm. If on a winter's night, here nearby in Via Ottaviano, for example, a person dies, that is not news. If in so many parts of the world there are children who have nothing to eat, that's not news, it seems normal. It cannot be this way! Yet these things become the norm: that some homeless people die of cold on the streets is not news. In contrast, a ten point drop on the stock markets of some cities, is a tragedy. A person dying is not news, but if the stock markets drop ten points it is a tragedy! Thus people are disposed of, as if they were trash".

    This "culture of waste" tends to become the common mentality that infects everyone. Human life, the person is no longer perceived as a primary value to be respected and protected, especially if poor or disabled, if not yet useful -  such as the unborn child - or no longer needed - such as the elderly. This culture of waste has made us insensitive even to the waste and disposal of food, which is even more despicable when all over the world, unfortunately, many individuals and families are suffering from hunger and malnutrition. Once our grandparents were very careful not to throw away any leftover food. Consumerism has led us to become used to an excess and daily waste of food, to which, at times, we are no longer able to give a just value, which goes well beyond mere economic parameters. We should all remember, however, that the food we throw away is as if stolen from the table of the poor, the hungry! I encourage everyone to reflect on the problem of thrown away and wasted food to identify ways and means that, by seriously addressing this issue, are a vehicle of solidarity and sharing with the needy".

    "When -  he concluded - food is shared in a fair way, with solidarity, when no one is deprived, every community can meet the needs of the poorest. Human ecology and environmental ecology walk together. So I would like us all to make a serious commitment to respect and protect creation, to be attentive to every person, to counter the culture of waste and disposable, to promote a culture of solidarity and of encounter ".

     

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    See also

    21/01/2015 VATICAN
    Pope: Poverty is not caused by many children, but throw-away culture
    Acts of “brutality” in Niger against “children, against churches", "war can never be waged in the name of God". The trip to Sri Lanka and the Philippines. St. Joseph Vaz "a model for all Christians, called today to propose the saving truth of the Gospel in a multi-religious context". "Care for the poor is an essential element of our Christian life and witness; it involves the rejection of all forms of corruption, because corruption steals from the poor, it demands a culture of honesty."

    29/03/2014 VATICAN
    Pope to the blind and deaf: Jesus encounters people marked by disease to make them witnesses
    In an audience with six thousand people from the Apostolic Movement for the Blind and Little Mission of the Deaf-mute, Pope Francis speaks of the "culture of encounter" and that of "exclusion", remembering a man born blind . "Only those who recognize their fragility, their limits can build fraternal relations and solidarity, in the Church and in society". A greeting for those present while the crowd shake their hands in a gesture of applause.

    09/12/2015 VATICAN
    Pope: Church "needs" Jubilee of Mercy, it’s "what pleases God most”
    "Even the necessary work of renewal of the institutions and structures of the Church is a medium that should lead us to have a living and life-giving experience of God's mercy which alone can guarantee the Church to be that city set on a hill that cannot remain hidden. Only a merciful Church shines". A "beautiful" and "easy" prayer "to say every day: 'Lord, I am a sinner; Lord, I am a sinner: Come with Your mercy".

    14/10/2015 VATICAN
    Pope asks "forgiveness for recent scandals in Rome and Vatican"
    "Children’s Angels reflect God’s gaze and God never loses sight of children. Woe to those who betray their trust, woe! Their trusting abandonment to our promises, which commits us from the first moment, judge us. " Appeal for World Day to Overcome Extreme Poverty.

    16/09/2015 VATICAN
    Pope on families' vital role in “liberating people from the colonization of the money"
    "There are many clichés,, sometimes even offensive, of the temptress who inspires evil. However there is room for a theology of woman, worthy of God’s blessing for her and for generation". Last general audience dedicated to the family, on the eve of trip that includes World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia



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