Laudato Si 

Tips on Caring for Our  Common Home:

Pray with and for creation in your daily prayers: Include a prayer of thankfulness for creation, a prayer for protection of our common home, or perhaps a prayer for people suffering impacts of climate or ecological issues. Take time periodically to pray outdoors.

Set aside one day a month - or better yet, a day each week - to leave the car parked and instead walk, ride a bike or use transit to get where you are going. It's a small step that can benefit the health of the Earth, and yours as well.

Try to limit the use of disposable wet wipes, which are sold for a variety of purposes. Many are made with plastics or synthetic fibers that can disintegrate into micro-plastics that become harmful to wildlife in aquatic environments. Some wipes also have been shown to damage sewer systems. Search the internet for instructions on making reusable wet wipes for various purposes around your home.

Whenever possible, buy products that originate as close to home as you can. In addition to supporting local businesses and workers, you also will be helping to reduce the environmental impact of product transportation.

"Disinterested concern for others, and the rejection of every form of self-centeredness and self-absorption, are essential if we truly wish to care for our brothers and sisters and for the natural environment. These attitudes also attune us to the moral imperative of assessing the impact of our every action and personal decision on the world around us.”    Laudato Si # 208

Engage in forthright and honest discussions about environmental problems and policies, understanding that issues cannot be dealt with once and for all. Ongoing discussion will allow issues to be continually reframed and enriched with a variety of valid viewpoints and possible solutions.

Look for way to recycle protective materials from packages you receive. Some local package-shipping offices will accept materials such as plastic peanuts and bubble wrap. Bubble wrap also can be packaged in a plastic grocery bag and placed in your recycle cart. Find out where to recycle in your area at

As much as 95 percent of clothes, shoes and linens thrown in the garbage could be reused or recycled. A number of local organizations will accept all clothes (except those that are wet, mildewed or contaminated with hazardous materials) — even damaged or mismatched items. To learn where you can take these items, see


When shopping, look for items made as close to home as possible as a way to help reduce the carbon footprint of global shipping. Also look for items that have a reputation for durability — you will save money as well as help to preserve natural resources.

Familiarize yourself with life-affirming legislation and with church teaching on the sanctity of life, including St. Pope John Paul's “Evangilium Vitae,” which is available online.

Designate certain rooms in your home, or certain hours of the day (or both!), as tech-free zones. This allows more time for contemplation, reading books or newspapers, or praying. It also allows more time for meaningful interaction with family members and friends, all of which leads to a greater appreciation of our world. 

Instead of buying bottled water, buy reusable water bottles and fill them from the tap at home, work or school. You can also carry empty water bottles (even metal ones) through airport security and fill them once you have passed security. This will help remove non-biodegradable plastic from the waste stream and help keep it out of our waterways. 

Heed the old saying “less is more” by avoiding needless consumption. Reduce, reuse, recycle — preserve resources whenever possible, use them more efficiently and limit the use of non-renewable resources. 

Whether alone or with family or friends, take some time for a leisurely walk in a park or along a waterfront and appreciate the great beauty God has given us in all aspects of creation.

Save water by taking shorter showers and not letting the water run continuously while brushing teeth or shaving. In this way we can help bring a future in which impoverished populations around the world will have affordable access to a clean source of this God-given necessity of life.

On Care for Our Common Home (Laudato Si') 

Laudato Si' is an appeal from Pope Francis addressed to "every person living on this planet" about how we are shaping the future of Earth. Pope Francis calls the Church, the world, and each person to acknowledge the urgency of our environmental challenges and to join him in embarking on a new path.  The last three popes have all called these challenges “a moral issue.”  This encyclical (Papal letter), the first to focus solely on ecology and human’s place within and relationship with God’s creation, is written with both hope and resolve, looking to our common future with candor and humility. Pope Francis, emphasizing the importance of the document, has explicitly stated that the encyclical is now added to the body of the Catholic Church’s social teaching. Learn more about the Holy Father’s statement and how you might respond in faith by exploring this website.

Pope Francis' TED Talk


In a 2017 TED Talk, the Pope spoke on Why the only future worth building includes everyone.  He is a strong advocate of global action against climate change, to which he has devoted his powerful 2015 encyclical, Laudato sì ("Praise be to you"). He invites us to practice "tenderness," putting ourselves "at the level of the other," to listen and care. 


View the following short videos 

Learn more about Praise Be to You the Papal Encyclical (Laudato Si’) of the Holy Father Francis On Care for Our Common Home.   Use the video icons with “play” arrows.


Laudato Si’

This 6-minute, un-narrated, bilingual video is the official Vatican video about On Care for Our Common Home

Top 10 Things You Need to Know about Pope Francis'  Laudato Si’

This 4-minute video narrated by Fr. James Martin, SJ, editor-at- large of the Jesuit magazine America presents highlights of On Care for our Common Home.

Live Wisely, Think Deeply

This 4-minute animated video by the Catholic Agency For Overseas Development (CAFOD) presents highlights of On Care for Our Common Home for children.


  What you can do to care for our common home and still shop …  Guide to Green Shopping


For more about On Care for Our Common Home, visit


Responding to Pope Francis: What parishioners are thinking? 

(Meeting Summaries)

January 4, 2018

Nov. 30 & Oct. 16, 2017


Laudato Si: Tips on Caring for Our  Common Home continued:

To help keep waterways clean and safe from pollutants, take steps such as using biodegradable detergents at home and in business and eliminating the use of disposable plastic whenever possible. Also, be aware that synthetic pesticides and herbicides can harm birds and insects that benefit agriculture. 

If possible, use email and text-messaging to reduce paper consumption. If you must print a document, use double-sided printing if you can. These steps will help conserve natural resources and save money as well. (Laudato Si’, 211)

There is a nobility in the duty to care for creation through little daily actions, and it is wonderful how education can bring about real changes in lifestyle. Education in environmental responsibility can encourage ways of acting which directly and significantly affect the world around us..”

Try to eliminate as much disposable plastic from your life as possible; it breaks down into tiny particles that enter streams, lakes and oceans, harming harm fish and other wildlife. Instead, keep a reusable water bottle; wash and reuse plastic sandwich and snack bags, or try replacing them with waxed paper or waxed-paper bags, which can be composted.

Buy used items whenever feasible, and if possible repair rather than replace broken items. In most cases this saves money, but it also preserves resources and reduce overall consumption.

Familiarize yourself with life-affirming legislation and with church teaching on the sanctity of life, including St. Pope John Paul's “Evangilium Vitae,” which is available online.

Even if we don't see immediate impact from our stewardship efforts, we must continue them and keep in mind that they will ultimately benefit society “for they call forth a goodness which, albeit unseen, inevitably tends to spread.”     (Laudato Si’, 212)

Make it a priority to increase your use of public transportation. Buses and light rail are operating anyway, so making use of them instead of your car - even just two or three times a month - is a step in reducing emissions and congestion. You might find it easy enough to do even more often.

It is important to learn lessons that first present themselves in family life: how to show love and respect for life; the proper use of things; order and cleanliness; respect for the local ecosystem and care for all creatures; how to learn and mature; how to ask without demanding; saying “thank you” in genuine gratitude; controlling aggressiveness and greed. “These simple gestures of heartfelt courtesy help to create a culture of shared life and respect for our surroundings.” (Laudato Si’, 213)

Pope Francis writes that the disappearance of an entire culture “can be just as serious, or even more serious, than the disappearance of a species of plant or animal.” We should strive to listen to indigenous peoples, protect their lands and involve them in processes and decisions that affect them.

Practice observing, and appreciating, the beauty in all aspects of creation that surround you. “If someone has not learned to stop and admire something beautiful, we should not be surprised if he or she treats everything as an object to be used and abused without scruple.” (Laudato Si’, 215)


 “How can we genuinely teach the importance of concern for other vulnerable beings, however troublesome or inconvenient they may be, if we fail to protect a human embryo, even when its presence is uncomfortable and creates difficulties?” (Laudato Si’, paragraph 120) 

“… In some places, where the facades of buildings are derelict, people show great care for the interior of their homes, or find contentment in the kindness and friendliness of others. A wholesome social life can light up a seemingly undesirable environment.” — Pope Francis, Laudato Si’, paragraph 148.

Encourage prayer before and after meals to express gratitude to God for His generosity in meeting our daily needs, but also as a reminder of our duty to be good stewards of His creation so that it may continue to serve the needs of all His creatures.


When eating at a buffet restaurant, or even at coffee and donuts after Mass on Sunday, you can help conserve natural resources and reduce waste by taking just one plate, one napkin and only the utensils you need. Encourage others to do the same.