Pope Francis: ‘Let us not forget that crises are also windows of opportunity’

CNA Staff   By CNA Staff

Pope Francis, pictured on July 30, 2016. / Mazur/catholicnews.org.uk.

Vatican City, Nov 2, 2021 / 12:00 pm (CNA).

The world is facing ecological, social, and healthcare crises, but it is vital to remember that “crises are also windows of opportunity,” Pope Francis has said.

Writing in the foreword to the e-book “Laudato si’ Reader. An Alliance of Care for Our Common Home,” the pope noted that the world’s challenges had multiplied since the publication of his environmental encyclical in 2015.

He wrote: “The ‘Cry of the Earth and the Cry of the Poor’ that I present in Laudato si’ as the emblematic consequence of our failure to care for our common home has been amplified lately by the COVID-19 emergency that humanity is still struggling to control.”

“Thus, an ecological crisis, represented by the ‘cry of the earth,’ and a social crisis, represented by ‘the cry of the poor,’ have been made deadly by a healthcare crisis: the COVID-19 pandemic …”

“Nevertheless, let us not forget that crises are also windows of opportunity: they are a chance to recognize and to learn from past mistakes.”

The preface, published by Vatican News on Oct. 31, appears in a volume issued in print by the Libreria Editrice Vaticana in conjunction with the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26), currently taking place in Glasgow, Scotland.

The e-book will be available for free download from Nov. 12 on the website of the Vatican’s Dicastery for Integral Human Development.

The text also features an introductory message by U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres, a Catholic who served as Portugal’s prime minister from 1995 to 2002.

He wrote: “This is a moment of truth. If we persist with the old ways of inequality, injustice, hatred, and heedless dominion over the Earth, we face disaster. Just as we need a ceasefire on traditional battlefields, so must we end our war on nature…”

“Making peace with nature must be a priority for the 21st century. The recovery from the pandemic offers a chance to pull back from the abyss.”

In his preface, the pope said that the new e-book marked “a fitting conclusion” to the Laudato si’ Anniversary Year, which ended on May 24 this year.

He also expressed joy at the encyclical’s “positive impact” within the Catholic Church, other Christian communities, and religious groups.

“The present crisis should make us ‘turn what is happening to the world into our own personal suffering and thus to discover what each of us can do about it,’” he wrote, quoting Laudato si’.

“They are also a time for us to change gear, to change bad habits in order to be able to dream, co-create, and act together to realize just and equitable futures.”

“It is time to develop a new form of universal solidarity that is grounded in fraternity, love, and mutual understanding: one that values people over profit, one that seeks new ways to understand development and progress. And so, it is my hope and prayer that we do not come out of this crisis the same way we entered it.”

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  1. Surely China, Russia and Saudi Arabia will eventually embrace fraternity and sign the new climate accord.

    So, the remaining question is how to deal with such as these bad actors once the invitation to dialogue falls short. The hope is that a new grassroots and trans-boundary consciousness might emerge, perhaps even under a Synod on Synodality which reaches beyond the Church and into a world of fallen-aways and atheists and such.

    But then, on the other hand, this is a big wager with multiple abysses of all types now on the poker table…In addition to the named ecological crisis, the social crisis, and the health crisis, the underlying, enabling and post-Christian “culture of death” also comes to mind. As does the duty and “window of opportunity” for laymen in the secular world to at least not aggressively make the disinterred culture of Baal even worse. Biden, of course, reports that he’s a good boy and that government funding of Aztec-like fetal dismemberment is a non-issue, and no one says otherwise. Thus, it cometh to pass that the “window of opportunity” to deal with Cupich’s “rabbit hole” catastrophe yet again passes us by.

    Best not to shine a light on the Church’s spiritual crisis of Eucharist incoherence. All crises are equal, but some crises are more equal than others.

  2. Never let a good crisis go to waste is a principle for antithetical action found in Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals [also Never waste a crisis adopted by ex Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel]. Is it unusual that Pope Francis perceives the Covid crisis as an opportunity to advance an agenda? “Thus, an ecological crisis, represented by the cry of the earth, and a social crisis, represented by the cry of the poor, have been made deadly by a healthcare crisis, the Covid-19 pandemic” (Francis). Ecology and poverty are made deadly, the antithesis to their neutral character, which is the thesis. Although it seems difficult to make that dual inference, the pontiff explains that the disease amplifies the disturbance of our global ecology presumably by industry and the high morbidity among the poor as compared to the affluent. While there is statistical indication that holds for the poor Francis somehow finds correspondence of disease with ecology. “Making peace with nature must be a priority for the 21st century” is the clue. “Heedless dominion over the Earth”, Mother Earth is the realization of his thought, a warfare with nature as if Earth mother were retaliating. His Holiness makes the added inference that Covid is that retaliative punishment on Mankind. True to Alinskyan subversion rules, the antithesis advances his agenda. His supporting premise is that the Covid virus is a product of nature rather than a biological weapon engineered by the CCP at China’s Hunan lab. Despite that all the evidence points to the lab. The resolution is found in economic equanimity and ecology, rather than correcting China’s inhumanity to Man. And of course the abeyance from the current issue of globalized abortion.

  3. An addendum. Hunan is famous for its cuisine, Hunan chicken a specialty. Whereas Wuhan is notorious for its virus research.

  4. I still believe that this Wuhan Epidemic is Divine Punishment in part to Pope Francis allowing, and participating in, the worship of the disgusting Pachamama Demon Idol in the Vatican Gardens in 2019. Is it coincidence that the Virus appeared to have originated in Wuhan at almost the exact same time? I think not.

    • Yes, and consider modern man’s moral degradation. The number of persons participating in contraception, abortion, gender-mutilation and other unnatural acts continues to grow. Younger and progressively younger members are recruited to such practices. The appalling horror should be clear and our lenses should magnify. We witnessed (in Loudoun County, Va.) the father of a daughter ARRESTED for his ANGER because NO ONE IN AUTHORITY NOTIFIED HIM THAT HIS DAUGHTER had been RAPED in her public school bathroom.

      Scripture has it: God chastises those He loves. If man continues to act against God’s glory, against the goodness and purpose of our and His nature, man shall continue to witness greater crises of nature where God appears not to dwell. Scripture and God’s prophets have said so.

      As Fr. Peter says, to claim that poverty and industrialization are to blame is an inference (Meiron adds: suggestive of egregious logical error). I reassert: Francis needs a bedside Bible, a good spiritual director (He is always available to those who knock), and a course in Thomistic metaphysics. For a start, a pure, humble, chastened heart will work wonders.

      • Addendum: That one is far from a pure, humble, chastened heart does not bode well for a peaceful future. We are in the thick of it with more clouds and crises forecast.

  5. With just one exception, I agree with our Pope regarding his concerns.
    Right from the beginning, man had a simple religion. It was a God-inspired one. The tenets were simple. Revere God and be good stewards of creation. And this is how they did live. This God-based humanism ensured that they lived in a paradise. But then their relationship with God was completely ruined when, under Satan’s influence, selflessness gave way to self-centeredness. All disobedient actions have consequences and, in this case, the Garden became a wasteland. It was then that death, confusion, disorder and other damaging consequences set in. Paradise was lost. Adam’s sinful action badly affected nature.
    It happened also in Noah’s time. The affect of sinful ways was enacted through nature. And nature again played a devastating role in Sodom. We do not really know what the full extent of the consequences of our wrongdoings. Only God knows.
    The problem I do have is the connection that is being made between our CO2 and climate. I do not believe that CO2 has heat-generating capacity. I am worried because CO2 is vital for plant survival, and plants do make food for all living things. Satan, who out of hatred of God, has attacked our marriage and family, and also our nature by playing with our two genders. Now, by attacking CO2, is he trying to deprive us of food? If anyone can prove that CO2 does generate heat, that it causes global warming and consequently climate change, I will rethink my views.

    es of our disobedient actions are. Only God knows his laws. When Jesus walked the earth, he emphasized the same

    Loving neighbor obviously includes his living conditions.
    Besides these examples,

    it is so easy for us to see how polluted waters and air can cause us, the flora and fauna problems. We know that people living in slums and unhygienic conditions ca

    The problem I have is the connection that they are making between our CO2 and climate. Carbon, which is so important for our ecosystem is being made into a villain. I just wonder if this is part of Satan’s strategy to “hurt” God by attacking CO2. Satan has got us to harm family (abortion), marriage (divorce and SSM), our nature (the two genders that are vital for our survival) and now CO2 (vital for plants and the food they make for all living things). If anyone can prove that CO2 causes global warming and subsequently climate change, then I will rethink this issue.

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