Pope raises expectations of forthcoming document at Angelus address
VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis on Sunday said that he hoped his upcoming encyclical on the environment, to be released on Thursday, will be received by everyone for the benefit of our common home.
Speaking after the Sunday Angelus in St. Peter’s Square, Pope Francis said: “As announced, an encyclical letter on the care of creation will be published. I invite you to accompany this event with a renewed attention to the situation of environmental degradation, but also of recovery in one’s own region. This encyclical is addressed to everyone: let us pray so that all may receive its message and grow in responsibility toward the common home that God has entrusted to us all.”
The highly anticipated papal document, entitled “Laudato Si’, on the care of our common home,” will be presented at a press conference on Thursday, June 18th, in the Vatican’s Synod Hall.
The Pope’s appeal followed a reflection on the Gospel parable of the seed that sprouts and grows in the earth, and the mustard seed which is the smallest of all seeds yet becomes the largest of trees. Through these parables, Pope Francis said, Jesus speaks to us about the strength of God’s life-giving Word, and of how Christ’s love transforms what is small into something that makes the whole world and all of history great.
The Pope also reminded the faithful once again to carry a pocket-sized copy of the Gospel, and to read a passage every day. Doing so will help the Kingdom of God to grow within us, he said.
The two parables contained in Sunday’s Gospel teach us above all that the Kingdom of God is the Lord’s gift. But its growth requires our collaboration. Although our contribution may appear meagre when faced with the complexity of problems in the world, nonetheless, with God’s love, each seed of goodness will sprout and grow. This, he said, gives us reason to hope.Despite the injustice and suffering we may face, the seed of charity and peace will yield its fruits thanks to the mysterious love of God.