• September 10, 2021

Vatican Encourages “Transitioning to Plant Based Diets” – Laudato Si’ Action Platform

 Vatican Encourages “Transitioning to Plant Based Diets” – Laudato Si’ Action Platform

Photo: Tatjana Baibakova

This article gives an overview of the Laudato Si’ Action Platform. It describes its goals and its proposed set of actions. various entities around the world are implementing them.

The Laudato Si’ Action Platform, is an online platform through which the Vatican’s Dicastery Promoting Integral Human Development is promoting a 7-year action plan with clear goals and concrete actions, in favour of integral ecology. Families, educational institutions, economic entities, healthcare organisations, parishes, dioceses, organisations/groups and religious institutions can implement this plan. Certainly, both the Catholic Church and other non-religious entities can adopt it.

Pope Francis, in 2015, wrote a letter to all people of goodwill entitled Laudato Si’ – On Care For Our Common Home, is a letter. This letter encourages us to be “stewards of creation”. Pope Francis writes that urgent action needs to be taken to re-examine and restore our relationships. He mentions our relationship with our Divine Creator and our relationship with our fellow human beings especially the poor. Finally, our relationship with Mother Earth. He believes that these three are connected – “everything is connected.” (Par 91)

Laudato Si’ goals and concrete action

The Laudato Si’ Action Platform is based on the goals outlined in Laudato Si’. Most noteworthy, these goals emphasise redefining and rebuilding our relationships with each other and with our common home. These seven holistic goals call for a spiritual and cultural revolution to achieve integral ecology. They are found in a document within the Laudato Si’ Action Platform website entitled Overview of Goals and Action. In addition to each goal, a set of actions is being proposed in the coming months. These can be implemented by various entities around the world.

Some of the proposed actions include:

– “Improving sustainability in diets by reducing food waste before and after market, composting, buying food from local producers when possible, transitioning from meat-based to plant-based meals.

– “Protecting waterways and land by ensuring sensible fertilizer use, instituting drop irrigation and other conservative irrigation models, planting waterway buffers, avoiding the installation of impermeable surfaces around buildings.”

– “Promoting and protecting Indigenous leadership by ensuring Indigenous communities have the rights to their land and by elevating Indigenous leadership.”

– “Sharing resources and wisdom by learning from elders, sharing social resources, sharing monetary resources, and holding community-wide action days.”

– “Ensuring financial investments are ethical and sustainable by divesting from fossil fuels, investing in socially responsible enterprises, and choosing ethical banking and insurance companies.”

– “Practicing fair and sustainable purchasing by supporting ethical businesses, taking a “total cost of ownership approach” to purchases, making a sustainability shopping list, and purchasing from local retailers.

– “Improving sustainability in consumer purchases by eliminating the use of disposable plastic and styrofoam, correctly recycling as much as possible, and reducing purchases of new consumer goods.

– “Delivering equitable access to education by ensuring under-represented groups are educated, shaping education programs with a wide variety of people, offering culturally appropriate and/or alternative forms of education, and ensuring that education promotes human rights and dignity.”

These actions and many more are listed under the 7 goals which are: adoption of sustainable lifestyles, community engagement and participatory action, ecological economics, ecological education, ecological spirituality, response to the cry of the earth and response to the cry of the poor.

Endorsement in the community

This 7-year action plan is being endorsed by 150 organisations around the world so far. These include CAFOD, Caritas International, EcoJesuit, the Don Bosco Green Alliance, the Focolare Movement, and The Office of Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation of the Franciscan Minors. Moreover, many more organisations are still enrolling.

What is the Laudato Si’ Action Platform?

The Laudato Si’ Action Platform provides an action-oriented 7-year ecological conversion journey in the spirit of integral ecology. All people of goodwill, are guided by the seven crosscutting Laudato Si’ Goals mentioned above, to learn, grow together and respond to Pope Francis’ letter On Care for Our Common Home. Furthermore, the platform offers inspiration, resources and a flexible framework. This helps translate the values and knowledge of Laudato Si’ into communities of action around the world. This platform is still open to new individuals and groups who wish to join this community and pledge their commitment to developing their own Laudato Si’ Plan.

There is hope

In spite of the social and environmental crisis we are facing, Pope Francis believes that there is still hope. He calls us to develop a “loving awareness” of the common home we share. Furthermore, he encourages us to act on the values we hold dear. He also calls us to urgently embark on new ways of living with “creativity and enthusiasm”, to promote integral ecology. (Par 220 and 221)

For more information and FAQs on the Laudato Sì Action Platform, please visit:
https://laudatosiactionplatform.org/more-information/

Read more:
– Astronomy and Faith
– Ecological Conversion Definition

Suzanne Vella

Suzanne Vella has a Masters' Degree in Theology, a Diploma in Spirituality and a Diploma in Digital Marketing.

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