June 22, 2015: My Response to LAUDATO SI’

~by Susi Pittman

It is with the greatest of “joy” that I read our Holy Father’s encyclical! I have so longed to hear these words come forth from the Holy See in such a definitive and clear statement.

Under my current ASK SUSI column, I have an answer to a question from our readers about the Redemption of Creation. This was written in 2014. Needless to say, Pope Francis’ new encyclical resounded with affirmation.

There were particular paragraphs that I wanted to share with you, following up with just a short commentary to each:

  • the awareness that each creature reflects something of God and has a message to convey to us, and the security that Christ has taken unto himself this material world and now, risen, is intimately present to each being, surrounding it with his affection and penetrating it with his light… May the power and the light of the grace we have received also be evident in our relationship to other creatures and to the world around us. In this way, we will help nurture that sublime fraternity with all creation which Saint Francis of Assisi so radiantly embodied.

Yes indeed, all creatures have a message to share with us. Christ is intimately connected to all creation, because through Him all enters this realm and exits this realm of existence. He knows you and I, our pets, the wildflowers, the wind, the stars, ALL THINGS that exist, INTIMATELY…He is God!

  • The Eucharist joins heaven and earth; it embraces and penetrates all creation. The world which came forth from God’s hands returns to him in blessed and undivided adoration: in the bread of the Eucharist, “creation is projected towards divinization, towards the holy wedding feast, towards unification with the Creator himself”. Thus, the Eucharist is also a source of light and motivation for our concerns for the environment, directing us to be stewards of all creation.

There has never been a time at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass that I have not felt an immediate and intuitive connection to the whole of creation. It fills me, moves me and inspires me in my mission to share the glory of redemption for the whole of creation. Jesus loves ALL that the Father has given Him and indeed is present, body, blood, soul and divinity in the transubstantiation of the bread and wine. It is in this amazing, miraculous and ineffable moment that heaven and all earth are united.

  • Everything is interconnected, and this invites us to develop a spirituality of that global solidarity which flows from the mystery of the Trinity.

It is truth on its highest level! Everything IS interconnected. It is the mission of this website to acknowledge that truth weekly and to bring to you our readers great joy and hope in the beauty that we share not only here in this realm, but, also what will await us in the life to come. We can prepare for the glorious reunion by taking care of what is present to us in creation in our state of life at the present moment. Perhaps you have the opportunity to work with an ecological group in protecting sensitive wildlife areas, or perhaps volunteering at a dog or cat rescue operation, or maybe even caring for the birds and butterflies in your own backyard. It is your call, your vocation if your will, to respond to that which you see. You may not be drawn to it, but you are aware of it…perhaps you have been made aware of it for a reason. Reach out. Assist in the way that you can. As a steward you are asked to respond to that inner calling.

  • At the end, we will find ourselves face to face with the infinite beauty of God (cf. 1 Cor 13:12), and be able to read with admiration and happiness the mystery of the universe, which with us will share in unending plenitude.

We will all pass away from this world. We will all stand before the Great I Am whether we want to acknowledge that or not. Our eyes will be opened to knowledge beyond our wildest imaginings. I can’t help but think about words from the dying that echo that presence of pure truth. Saint Joan of Arc said, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus! Saint John Crysostom said, Glory to God in all things! St. Ignatius of Loyola said, O, My God! Perhaps one of the most recent and profound words from the dying came from Apple CEO, Steve Jobs; OH WOW, OH WOW, OH WOW! What was he seeing? Each crossing over into the presence of The Almighty is unique to each and every soul that exists. But what awaits on the other side you can be sure will take you beyond anything you could have prepared for. Saint John Bosco, who was shown the “glorified natural” was completely amazed and stated that words could not describe what he truly experienced.

  • Even now we are journeying towards the sabbath of eternity, the new Jerusalem, towards our common home in heaven. Jesus says: “I make all things new” (Rev 21:5). Eternal life will be a shared experience of awe, in which each creature, resplendently transfigured, will take its rightful place and have something to give those poor men and women who will have been liberated once and for all.

It is the scripture that appears again and again in my book, Animals In Heaven? Catholics Want To Know!…BEHOLD, I MAKE ALL THINGS NEW! If this were not important to the whole of creation, it would not have been included and emphasized in sacred scripture. I love the Holy Father’s figurative speech…resplendently transfigured. How wonderful to prepare for such as that!

  • In the meantime, we come together to take charge of this home which has been entrusted to us, knowing that all the good which exists here will be taken up into the heavenly feast. In union with all creatures, we journey through this land seeking God, for “if the world has a beginning and if it has been created, we must enquire who gave it this beginning, and who was its Creator”. Let us sing as we go. May our struggles and our concern for this planet never take away the joy of our hope.

Many times in praying for those who come to our Pet Prayer page, I acknowledge in prayer that Jesus receives back all the “good” that He has sent forth…which includes our pets who share their beautiful, unconditional love with us. Why wouldn’t he? Unconditional love for us is Jesus’ very essence! We see in the actions of our pets, the loving, Creator-God who loves us unconditionally, sharing Himself uniquely through creation to that truth.

Thank you Holy Father for this beautiful encyclical!

Thank you for reminding clergy and layman alike…Redemption is cosmological and that salvation came for the whole of creation.

~Written 12/6/2014~

Read the entire encyclical LAUDATO SI’ HERE.

*** Please know that where the Holy Father’s words are underlined, that is of my own designation.


Susi Pittman is founder of CatholicStewardsofCreation.com and Owner-President of Twin Oaks Publishing; she is author of Animals in Heaven? Catholics Want to Know!; an advocate for the Florida Catholic Conference; a member of the St. Joseph’s Catholic Council of Women in Jacksonville, Florida; an Associate of the Sisters of St. Joseph, St. Augustine;a member of the Florida Publishers Association, Independent Book Publishers Association, the National Association of Professional Women, the ASPCA, the Humane Society of the United States and the National Audubon society.

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