Pope Francis: All People Have a Right to Clean, Safe Water

via Vatican Radio:

“All people have a right to safe drinking water.  This is a basic human right and a central issue in today’s world (cf. Laudato Si’, 30; Caritas in Veritate, 27).  This is a problem that affects everyone and is a source of great suffering in our common home.  It also cries out for practical solutions capable of surmounting the selfish concerns that prevent everyone from exercising this fundamental right.  Water needs to be given the central place it deserves in the framework of public policy.  Our right to water is also a duty to water.  Our right to water gives rise to an inseparable duty.  We are obliged to proclaim this essential human right and to defend it – as we have done – but we also need to work concretely to bring about political and juridical commitments in this regard.  Every state is called to implement, also through juridical instruments, the Resolutions approved by the United Nations General Assembly since 2010 concerning the human right to a secure supply of drinking water.  Similarly, non-state actors are required to assume their own responsibilities with respect to this right.

The right to water is essential for the survival of persons (cf. Laudato Si’, 30) and decisive for the future of humanity.  High priority needs to be given to educating future generations about the gravity of the situation.  Forming consciences is a demanding task, one requiring conviction and dedication.

The statistics provided by the United Nations are troubling, nor can they leave us indifferent.  Each day a thousand children die from water-related illnesses and millions of persons consume polluted water.  These facts are serious; we have to halt and reverse this situation.  It is not too late, but it is urgent to realize the need and essential value of water for the good of mankind.”

Republicans Pull Trumpcare Bill, Will Move on From Healthcare

In a huge victory for social justice and whole life advocates, who warned of the disastrous impact Trumpcare would have on the common good, the Republicans announced today that they are pulling the bill and moving on from healthcare, leaving Obamacare in place for the foreseeable future. Republican lawmakers lacked the votes to pass the measure, which caused deep internal divisions within the party and faced sharp criticism from the public.

Jesuit Superior General: Self-Sufficiency is West’s Most Dangerous Idol

Fr. Arturo Sosa, SJ, the Superior General of the Society of Jesus, in an interview with La Stampa:

What do you consider the most dangerous idol of contemporary West? 

“Self-sufficiency, the idea of doing and knowing by yourself and for yourself, as individuals and as a society. Western society is convinced it can accomplish happiness, the fullness of humanity, on its own and by excluding the others. For this reason, it builds walls instead of bridges, and tries to isolate itself and withdraw into itself. This attitude is a great danger. The persuasion of being able to build humanity autonomously, without the need to learn and receive from others, leads to not respecting different cultures and peoples, nor creation, which is our common home. Self-sufficiency shuts off the possibility of intercultural and interreligious dialogue and stands in the way of our future. It is an idol that isolates and ends up being paralyzing. “

Archbishop Wilton Gregory: We Must Raise Our Voices Against Bigotry

via The Georgia Bulletin:

Recently the Jewish community in our country has been disturbed by a number of aggressive and offensive actions, including the desecration of cemeteries and sending of threatening messages to Jewish institutions. Such behavior is totally unacceptable and humanly pathetic. We should all be offended and repulsed by these actions. Wherever they occur, they threaten us all.

The rise of these activities embarrasses us as a nation and diminishes our worldwide public image. Especially, these actions should incite us all not only to denounce them but to stand shoulder to shoulder with our Jewish neighbors in calling for a strong legal response and action against the perpetrators. To ignore this behavior or to minimize its impact on our neighbors is a betrayal of our Christian heritage and social dignity.

There is no question that the current climate of increasingly bitter public discourse has invited such conduct on the part of some people. Hatred and bigotry are sins that continue to afflict too many people and can occasionally erupt violently in the public arena.

Whether our Jewish friends are the targets of violent hostility, or whether the victims are Muslims, Sikhs, immigrants, Christians or people who simply appear to be of a particular ethnic or racial class, we cannot remain silent—for such silence becomes consensus.