October 7, 2020
Pope Francis New Encyclical, “Fratelli Tutti, on Fraternity and Social Friendship”
Pope Francis’s prophetic new encyclical speaks directly into the lives of men and women today! This greatly welcomed encyclical is a beautiful reflection on humanity’s path forward to a deeply desired and sought-after peace. Pope Francis addresses his renewed call to universal fraternity “to all people of good will, regardless of their religious convictions.”
Be convinced that you have a crucial part in securing peace! In his letter, the pope delves into the “art and architecture” that builds peace and universal fraternity. Pope Francis studies “the symptoms of an unhealthy society” in this encyclical and has an alternative proposal: “a way of life marked by the flavor of the Gospel.” Amid the “noisy potpourri of facts and opinions” present in today’s world, Pope Francis suggests respectful dialogue and proposes that we answer with “a new vision of fraternity and social friendship.” He assures us that “no single act of love for God will be lost” and reminds us that “everyone has a fundamental role to play” in writing “a new page of history, a page full of hope.”
Reflect on what makes for lasting peace! As he considers the “universal scope” of fraternal love, Pope Francis paints a picture of a social peace of “enduring stability” that draws its sustenance from a culture of encounter and respecting “the truth of our human dignity.” He rebukes “fundamentalist intolerance” and other forms of “shameless aggression” that get in the way of fraternal peace. Pope Francis asks, instead, that we recover kindness and forgiveness, so that we could arise as “stars shining in the midst of darkness.” – USCCB
OF THE HOLY FATHER
ON FRATERNITY AND SOCIAL FRIENDSHIP
1. “FRATELLI TUTTI”. With these words, Saint Francis of Assisi addressed his brothers and sisters and proposed to them a way of life marked by the flavour of the Gospel. Of the counsels Francis offered, I would like to select the one in which he calls for a love that transcends the barriers of geography and distance, and declares blessed all those who love their brother “as much when he is far away from him as when he is with him”. In his simple and direct way, Saint Francis expressed the essence of a fraternal openness that allows us to acknowledge, appreciate and love each person, regardless of physical proximity, regardless of where he or she was born or lives.
2. This saint of fraternal love, simplicity and joy, who inspired me to write the Encyclical Laudato Si’, prompts me once more to devote this new Encyclical to fraternity and social friendship. Francis felt himself a brother to the sun, the sea and the wind, yet he knew that he was even closer to those of his own flesh. Wherever he went, he sowed seeds of peace and walked alongside the poor, the abandoned, the infirm and the outcast, the least of his brothers and sisters.