This morning, Pope Francis spoke to the heart of the 2030 Global Agenda and in the center of what Ban-Ki Moon called the "sacred space", the chamber where world leaders speak to humanity.
Today, Pope Francis spoke not only to humanity, but about humanity... true humanity. He called us back to our naturally intelligent roots of fraternity and sorority, to consider a future world where our core motivation and behavior stems not from our limited self interest or political agendas, but from solidarity with our human family. He encouraged us to now with the new Global Agenda signed today -- live the Golden Mean and build a world based on the UN pillars of peace, environment and the people. This world he described as one that operated and acted first upon a fundamental, universal "spiritual" principle that values the inherent dignity and integrity of every living being... "beyond our political differences and individual material prosperity."
He called us to tap into our human nature... Yes, human + nature = natural intelligence. He reminded us that our essential "being" on earth is tied to the earth, and tied to its health. He urged us to reclaim our love of nature and stewardship responsibility for the biosphere's health and well-being, lest we condemn our "common home" to a "pile of waste"...as he famously quoted in the Encyclical.
Indeed, it is time for us to live in relation to one another as if our common future depended on it... because it does! Integral ecology (and I would add integral economy) naturally becomes the way forward for humanity to thrive together into the next century. Pope Francis emphasized that "there is a moral law written into the natural law itself". In essence, it is our Natura Vera (our true nature) to steward a peaceful, plentiful and prosperous planet, so Pope Francis (Papa Francesco) is merely calling us home, like a good loving father, as we've gone too far astray.
And having said that, Pope Francis also honored the UN for its extraordinary peace-keeping efforts around the world for the past 70 years and called every achievement of the UN as "a light that dispelled the darkness." He thanked those who gave their lives to the just cause of peace. Then he went on to highlight that in this UN appeal for the future, he was talking as a world leader to the world community; to every global citizen, reminding us that our future narrative lies in the hearts, minds, hands of everyone, not just those inside the UN system of global governance.
So, as Pope Francis and the 193 national delegations represented in the UN today showed up in the UN's sacred space to do their job and to sign the Global Goals, it is now our turn to: first, learn about the Global Goals; and second, to resolve to take personal, communal actions to reach those goals. As Jeff Sachs, (special advisor to Secretary General Ban Ki Moon and Director of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) )said yesterday at the International Conference on Sustainable Development, "the Global Goals are a framework to guide our actions, policies, agendas", lifestyle choices forward. The only way to reach those goals is truly for each of us to take actions- practical, purposeful, effective actions in our homes and communities- grassroots-style, to correct the socio-political, environmental injustices addressed in the goals.
All world leaders recognize that it will be impossible to overcome social disparity, lack of access to food-water-home, climate change, extreme poverty, biodiversity loss. If we do not each one of us become channels of peace, no one institution, government, company, organization can realize the aims of the Global Goals alone. It is time for us as Global Citizens in a Global Human Family to show up collectively, collaboratively, in service to its Sustainable Development for All.
And to do so, it's time to unlock our natural intelligence... where there is hatred, bring love; where there is injury, pardon; suffering, peace; exploitation, justice; hunger, food. It's a crucial time to be alive with the opportunity and responsibility to re-build our common church... inclusively.
Thank you Papa Francesco for your leadership and vision.