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Laudato Si’ Week 2022 is here! This is a global event sponsored by the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development and promoted by the Laudato Si’ Movement in collaboration with around 150 Catholic organizations. During this week we seek to educate, dialogue, promote and act for our sister Mother Earth: our Common Home, joining the canticle of Saint Francis of Assisi: “Praise be to you, oh, my Lord, in all your creatures!” (“Laudato Si, o mio Signore, per tutte le creature”) which is the title of Pope Francis’ Encyclical “Laudato Si”: for an ecological conversion.

As we join together to celebrate this week, we know there is still a lot of work to be done. In the week ahead, we will share some ways we are listening and journeying on an international level on down through a local level. We invite you to join with us in reflection for ways we can all dig a little deeper to help our common home.

CLICK HERE to learn more about the Laudato Si’ movement.
CLICK HERE to learn more about the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development.

Monday, May 23: Our Commitment

As we continue this celebration of Laudato Si Week, we remind ourselves of the response we made to the Vatican’s Invitation, a commitment to a Seven-Year Journey towards sustainability and Integral Ecology.

We commit ourselves to act justly, to love tenderly and to walk humbly. 

To invite you to reflect on our commitment, as we all listen and journey together.

Click Here to read our statement as we commit to a seven-year journey towards sustainability and Integral Ecology.

Tuesday, May 24: International Presentation Association

Integral ecology includes taking time to recover harmony with creation, reflect on our lifestyle and our ideals and to contemplate our Creator whose presence surrounds us. LS  225

We join with our International Presentation Association in many ways, including our justice contacts serving on the Care of Creation Committee. This allows us to come together in conversation for issues that are affecting all places of the world and how we can work together to address the cry of the earth. Like the coming of Spring, let us take time to reflect, renew and accept our shared responsibility for others and the world.

#Laudatosiweek

click here to learn more about the International Presentation Association.

Wednesday, May 25: Socially Responsible Investing

“Together with our obligation to use the earth’s goods responsibly, we are called to recognize that other living beings have a value of their own in God’s eyes: ‘by their mere existence…the priority of BEING over that of BEING USEFUL.” (LS, 69)

In our shareholder advocacy, we exercise ethical and social stewardship over our economic and financial resources.  We use three strategies:  1) Avoid Doing Harm to the earth and its people; 2) Actively Work for Change through corporate dialogues, resolutions, etc., 3) Promote the Common Good.  We partner with Seventh Generation Interfaith (regional) and Interfaith Center for Corporate Responsibility in NY.  We couldn’t do shareholder advocacy without their technical expertise, faith-based approach. We follow the United States Bishops’ Guidelines, as well. We also journey with the Francesco Collaborative who is a resource to faith-based organizations, wanting to apply the principles of Laudato Si’ into pro-active investment strategies, listening to the cries of those who do not have access to financial resources, listening to the cries of the earth and seeking ways to invest in alternative energy. 

Laudato Si’ calls everyone to listen to the cries of the earth and the cries of those made poor. This past year, the Presentation Sisters were one of 15 faith-based organizations who challenged Amazon using an integral ecology approach addressing:  paid sick leave, racial and gender pay equity, and our resolution challenging them to align their lobbying activities with the Paris Agreement.  I hear the cries of Amazon workers at the local level in Staten Island who are organizing for just wages.  CLICK HERE to read more about this effort.

#Laudatosiweek

Click Here to learn more about Seventh Generation Interfaith Coalition for Responsible Investment

Thursday, May 26: Integral Ecology

All it takes is one good person to restore hope. LS 71

In January 2021, we added two people to the Presentation Team who focus on Integral Ecology work. Their first project has a focus to restore the land around the Convent in Aberdeen with Native Prairie Grass. As this project advances, we are already seeing new partnership evolve and this important work grow as we listen to the cries of the earth. We are grateful for many on this journey with us, including the Aberdeen business community, EcoSun Prairie Farms, SDSU Extension and Natural Resource Management office, South Dakota Grassland Coalition Board and South Dakota Soil Health Coalition.

We continue to learn and desire a better sense of awareness around many issues, including the use of our farmlands over the years. The storm on May 12 that affected much of South Dakota brought with it one of the biggest dust storms in recent history. The dust was actually top soil from our own Midwest fields that are not being managed to their most balanced state. With all of our tools and technology, we haven’t actually made the needed progression from the original dust bowl of the 1930’s. This is both a motivation and a deeply sincere concern. 

#Laudatosiweek

Click Here to learn more about our Integral Ecology Ministry.

Friday, May 27: Our local efforts

“Give us the grace to feel profoundly joined to everything that is…You embrace with your tenderness all that exists.  Pour out upon us the power of your love, that we may protect life and beauty.” adapted from Prayer for our Earth, Pope Francis

Locally, in Aberdeen, we partner with Green Aberdeen on efforts to help our common home. We work to raise awareness and education of the interconnectedness of all creation. We listen to our Loving Creator, Jesus, and Spirit IN whom all of creation Is held together—IN whom all is nourished and LIVES.

To the best of our ability, we journey with all of creation by being faithful to the practice of contemplative prayer, listening, and dialogue.

#Laudatosiweek

Everything and everyone is connected. Let us care for all.

Saturday, May 28: Indigenous Connection

For them, land is not a commodity but rather a gift from God and from Their ancestors who rest there, a scared space with which they need to interact if they are to maintain their identity and values. LS 146

We recognize our place in history and remind ourselves that we are not the first inhabitants of the ground our Convent sits on in Aberdeen (or other places we reside). The Lakota were before us and lived in balance with the land. Their cultural spirit, along with our motivation and concerns are leading us to continue our prairie restoration project. We hope provide opportunities for education as a community, as we all learn together.

We are thankful to our Mother the Earth, for she gives us everything that we need for life.  She supports our feet as we walk about upon her.  It gives us joy that she still continues to care for us, just as she has from the beginning of time. *
* excerpt taken from the Thanksgiving Address of the Native American Onondaga Nation, Braiding Sweetgrass, author, Robin Wall Kimmerer

#Laudatosiweek

Sunday, May 29: Our challenge

Pope Francis challenges everyone to steward their resources for the common good.  The Presentation Sisters have given of themselves for the good of the people of God for the past 136 years.  We’re not stopping now!

In March 2022, our Chapter delegates discerned that the Presentation Sisters will build on the Chapter Calls of 2018 over the next four years. We expressed our commitment to live into the Catholic understanding that earth and all its people are one, sacred, and interconnected and in right relationship with the Mystical Body of Christ. Where we have broken this sacred trust of unity, we ask forgiveness, seek reconciliation, and celebrate restoration. Through contemplative living and dialogue, we open ourselves to the Spirit, who will lead us to see and actin new ways. As we grow into this commitment, Presentation People and others will be invited to partner with us.

#Laudatosiweek

Click Here and join us in reflection of the Common Prayer for the 7th Anniversary of Laudato Si’