Laudato Si’ Week: Covid-19 Commission hosts event on health and ecology
By Devin Watkins
As the Church celebrates Laudato Si’ Week, the Italian city of Aquileia is playing host to the “1 Health 4 All” event on Wednesday.
Held in the Basilica of Santa Maria Assunta, the event is broadcast on national Italian TV and on Vatican Media’s channels.
According to a press release from the Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Human Development, the event seeks to “deepen reflection on the connection between global health, just development, and integral ecology.”
The “1 Health 4 All” event sees the participation of a host of international public figures, and features an operatic performance by the tenor, Francesco Grollo.
Participants also include several activists and leaders in healthcare, finance, politics, and the environment, including Bernice King, Andrew Morlet, Sharon Stone, and Nobel Peace Laureate Tawakkol Karman.
The event has garnered support from international organizations, including Intesa Sanpaolo, Fiat, Snam, and Mitteleuropa Association.
One highlight is the celebration of the renovation and rededication of a hospital in South Sudan.
The Rumbek hospital was redone as a Laudato si’ hospital with the help of Doctors with Africa CUAMM.
According to the press release, the upgrades will allow the hospital to improve care for mothers and children and showcase that concrete, local actions “can be taken to address global challenges”.
Doctors with Africa drew inspiration for the hospital’s renovation from Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato si’.
Dialogue toward healing common home
Cardinal Peter Turkson, prefect of the Dicastery for Human Development of which the Covid-19 Commission is a part, recalled that the Pope’s encyclical invites all people to enter into dialogue to protect our common home.
“As members of the common human family,” said Cardinal Turkson, “we are here to reflect on the precarious state of our common planetary home, and to articulate concrete responses to heal and rebuild it.”
As the press release makes clear, “1 Health 4 All” is inspired by Laudato si’, which calls for a new, universal solidarity.
“The encyclical helps us to understand that ‘health for all’ relies on transforming our current (take-make-dispose) economic model to a circular (renew-remake-share) approach to economic development that is designed to benefit businesses, society, the environment, and people,” it reads. “It demonstrates how enterprises and institutions can strongly choose to change direction, act for the common good, and respect the delicate balance between care for creation, for others and our common home."