25 May 2023
For a Laudato Si’ Future, Prayer is Central

by Jennifer Kryszak, Director of Strategic Planning for the Franciscan Peace Center


In 2023, six of the Clinton Franciscan sisters are turning 90 years old. These women have lived lives dedicated to active nonviolence and peacemaking. They have ministered to the Church and society in direct service and advocated for systemic change. I am inspired by them and their fellow sisters who continue to challenge themselves to affect change in the world around them. At 90 years old, you might think that these sisters have completed their work, that they need not be concerned about the Laudato Si’ Action Plan. And yet, the Sisters would disagree with you as they are involved at all levels of our work on these goals.


Our Laudato Si’ Action Plan committees welcome the participation of the entire Clinton Franciscan family. Some committee members meet regularly to attend to specific goals. Others conduct research on single-use plastics or how to divest from companies that support nuclear weapons. Still others represent the congregation and the Franciscan Peace Center at programming events. Perhaps the most important role that the Clinton Franciscan family fulfills is praying for those working on these goals and the success of our Laudato Si’ Action Plan. Prayer sustains our efforts and reminds us of the reasons for our commitment to a Laudato Si’ future.


There is much to pray for.


We pray for the abolition of the death penalty. Recognizing the dignity of each person, we pray for those affected by executions, including victims, families of victims, death row victims, prison personnel, and execution workers. We pray for healing in relationships, that individuals and communities undertake the process of reconciliation. We pray for all those who work for healing in our communities, especially those who model and extend restorative justice.


We pray for nuclear disarmament and a change of heart and mind in government officials across the globe that they might work to eliminate nuclear weapons, enact no first-use policies, and limit presidential power to launch a nuclear attack. We pray for individuals and communities that they will divest from the companies that support the production and use of nuclear weapons. We pray for the healing of humanity’s relationship with the vulnerable of the Earth so that we recognize the disastrous effects of nuclear weapons and their production.


We pray for an end to human trafficking. We pray for the healing of the victims of human trafficking that they may find wholeness and communities that honor their well-being. We pray for individuals and organizations working to end human trafficking that they may remain committed to this work and recognize the complexity of the systems that enable trafficking. We pray that individuals and communities become aware of how their choices enable the continuation of human trafficking so that we might change our behaviors to protect all people.


We pray for an end to income inequality and the protection of basic human rights.  We pray that all people have access to housing and that we are moved to work for the development of affordable housing. We pray for all legislators that they craft and support legislation that protects the most vulnerable in our communities. Recognizing the need for the representation and voice of all, we pray that legislators are moved to protect voting rights for all people. We pray for all people who are harmed by systemic racism and for all who benefit from systemic racism that they experience a conversion of heart and mind and take action to end systems that fail to fully value all of humanity.


We pray for immigrants and those who serve them. We pray that we respond to the needs of immigrants and provide them with a welcoming community. We pray for federal legislators that they support federal immigration reform that honors the value of each person and enables pathways for citizenship. We pray for state governments that they work to protect the human rights of immigrants. We pray for a conversion of heart and mind of community members that they come to understand the reasons for migration and are moved to welcome immigrants into their communities.


We pray for the healing of the Earth and of humanity’s relationship with the Earth. We pray that our efforts to reduce our impact on Earth will come to fruition. We pray that people will alter practices to reduce greenhouse gases through energy generation and transportation. We pray that communities responsibly assess land use and the needs of wildlife. We pray that people will recognize the negative impact of plastics on the Earth and work for a global plastics treaty.


We pray that we recognize God in the world around us and our connections to all of creation. We pray that we work to eliminate all false senses of separation from the Earth. May we recognize our relationship with all parts of creation and be moved to honor the presence of God in creation.


Please join our Clinton Franciscan family in prayer on these issues. May we all be moved to work for a Laudato Si’ future.


Want to learn more about these ecological and societal issues? Sign up for the Franciscan Peace Center’s Action Alert Digest to receive a weekly newsletter that includes recent news articles on items related to the Clinton Franciscan’s corporate stands.

Back to Laudato Si Week Reflections 2023