Here at the St. Vincent de Paul Center, we do our best to go above and beyond when responding to Pope Francis’ invitation to value simplicity and stewardship. He asks us to consider, “How can I become a little poorer in order to be more like Jesus, who was the poor Teacher?” - Pope Francis 6-7-14, Vatican Press Release He reminds us that “The vocation of being a "protector", however, is not just something involving us Christians alone; it also has a prior dimension which is simply human, involving everyone. It means protecting all creation, the beauty of the created world, as the Book of Genesis tells us and as Saint Francis of Assisi showed us. It means respecting each of God’s creatures and respecting the environment in which we live. – Pope Francis, Homily, 3/19/13 We Live out Pope Francis’ challenge to simplicity in the following ways:
- By being conscious of our consumption of food, water, paper products and energy.
- By preparing and providing simple and healthy meals and snacks
- By expecting our participants to live without their phones, iPods, tablets, computers and any other personal devices during their time here
- By reusing and recycling packaging like plastics and paper
- By encouraging our participants to bring re-usable bottles, so as not to promote the injustice surrounding the privatization of water
- By using and taking only what we need in every aspect of consumption
- By encouraging students throughout the week to focus on detoxing from the culture of individualism, materialism and competition