Ecological Economics

Laudato Si' Action Platform Goal

Atrocities committed against people and the Earth for the sake of profit are not only immoral but self-destructive. Stripping away natural resources and thoughtless production and development will inevitably lead to planetary depletion and global economic collapse. To redirect our course, we need to recalibrate our thinking and attitudes to accomplish the change we need. This is an immense and critical enterprise, as its aim is nothing less than the flourishing of the entire world community.

This work starts with an awareness of the part each of us play with every dollar we spend and invest and the businesses that we support. With our purchasing power, we can endorse either mindful business practices with fair and just policies or gluttonous and destructive commercial structures.

“We are all too slow in developing economic institutions and social initiatives which can give the poor regular access to basic resources.”

Laudato Si' 109

Ecological economics is a system of commerce, production and consumption shaped by the regenerative ideal of elevating quality of life for all people and the planet. Built on the human-environment relationship, it promotes and supports sustainability, ensuring adequate resources for today but also for future generations.

Think of it as the long view for true global economic prosperity—the opposite of many of today’s major economies motivated by short-term gain and characterized by exploitive practices and greed.

Action items for achieving an ecological economy include:

  • phasing out fossil fuels and developing renewable energies,
  • reusing and repurposing materials and structures,
  • modifying purchasing and distribution practices,
  • reducing pollution in production,
  • implementing a just wage,
  • increasing energy efficiency,
  • and adopting socially responsible investment practices.

“Therefore, we support and… will initiate efforts that: secure the rights of the poor and disenfranchised; ensure affordable housing, especially for the poor; provide fair economic exchange between work and the fruits of the land; make persons aware of unjust use of the land to the detriment of the poor; challenge the structures that hold the poor captive to the greed of institutions, conglomerates and individuals of wealth; and preserve and restore the land.”

—Sisters of the Holy Cross Corporate Stand on Land Use and Reform

Learn.   Pray.   Discern.

Sisters of the Holy Cross invite you to continue the journey with us as we actively practice and promote ecological economics for the health and wholeness of the Earth community.

Start by downloading Laudato Si'  for free or purchase a copy from your favorite bookseller. Consider inviting others into this dialogue by sharing these resources, leading group discussions, or share on social media.

Suggested readings from Laudato Si' :

Take the time to read the following paragraphs from Laudato Si’ (on care for our common home). 

  • Danger of Deceptive Economic Interests, paragraph 38
  • Influence of Economic Interests, paragraph 45
  • Financial Gain Over Human Dignity, paragraph 56
  • Need for an Economic Ecology, paragraph 141
  • Rethinking Economic Benefits, paragraph 191
  • Compulsive Consumerism, paragraph 203
  • Purchasing as a Moral Act, paragraph 206

Ecological Economics Workshop

Ask Yourself

What about each reading stands out to you?

In what ways might your lifestyle contribute to the issues in the readings?

How are people who live in poverty adversely affected by some actions businesses take for financial gain?

What can you do on a personal level to be a more socially responsible consumer?

Prayer for Prosperity

Provided by Holy Cross International Justice Office

In your infinite love, O God, you have blessed us with the richness of creation,  the gifts of which hold the promise of prosperity for every being—brothers and sisters all. 

Yet in our blindness and greed, we have forgotten the true meaning of prosperity, that it is our relationship to you and to one another that gives us purpose. 

In our apathy, we have allowed harmful systems to take root, systems that overpower people and planet for the privilege and greedy appetites of the few. 

Grant us, Loving Creator, the wisdom and strength to right these wrongs, to give the economy its proper place in the service of people and planet, that we might fulfill our duty to care for our common home, ensuring that present and future generations might share in your bountiful love.

Amen. 

Continue this Journey with Us

We invite you enter your own commitment as an individual, a family or a community, and to join us in this seven-year mission on care of our common home. To stay up to date and receive additional resources, please sign up below.

Together, we can journey toward a better future.

Our time is now.