By Robin Gomes
“Protect All Life” is a phrase in “A Christian prayer in union with creation”, the second part of the final prayer that concludes Pope Francis' 2015 Encyclical, “Laudato Si”.
The lyrics of the theme song are by Jun Inoue who also scored the music together with Amadeus Code Ai. Arranged by Gyo Kitagawa it was performed by Dreamers Union Choir.
Releasing the theme song, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Japan (CBCJ) explained on the website that each of us has received the gift of life, created in the image of God, and is being led to our eternal homeland together with all people. Creation, they said, is also designed and maintained by God “to be lived in” (Isaiah 45,18). Hence, in order to “protect all life”, we must respect not only each person’s dignity but also the environment.
However, the bishops expressed concern that the earth, “our common home”, is being trampled by humankind and groans with pain that overlap with the distress of all the abandoned people of the world.
The bishops noted that in Japan today, there is a multitude of problems related to life and peace in addition to issues such as economy, environment and relations with neighbouring countries. Recovery from natural catastrophes and nuclear plant accidents remains a persisting problem.
The Church in Japan is making every effort to protect each life and respond to the various issues related to human life. “This theme of the Pope’s visit to Japan,” the bishops said, “expresses our determination to proclaim the Gospel of life brought by Christ, and to pray and work for the peace of Christ.”