Students and Faculty from Colegio Cardinal Newman (Buenos Aires, Argentina), Colegio Mundo Mejor (Chimbote, Peru) and Stella Maris College (Montevideo, Uruguay) spent part of the day on the Iona campus on Wednesday, September 18. Br. Kevin Cawley, Director of the Thomas Berry Forum for Ecological Dialogue, greeted them and accepted their invitation to present current efforts to address world issues at the United Nations and in the work of Laudato Si.
Br. Kevin described in general terms the current predicament faced by Earth, Our Common Home, by framing the Universe Story of 13.8 billion years and the Earth flourishing after 4 billion years followed by the recent 300,000 years of human activity leading to our present era, the Holocene, as we approach the Anthropocene. The students, along with Br. Kevin, examined briefly the efforts at the United Nations to address the multiple challenges of the current climate crisis and the deep inequalities among and within nations. The Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Climate Agreement were also highlighted, as well as several points on the magnificent encyclical of Pope Francis, Laudato Si: On Care for Our Common Home.
The students and teachers were receptive and expressed gratitude for the work of the Thomas Berry Forum in organizing the presentation for their visit to the campus. Because of their full schedule of activities they did not have much free time to take in the sights of New York and, for many, this would mark their very first opportunity to travel from Latin America to the United States. The Christian Brothers have been present in the Latin American region since 1948 and have many connections to the ministries in that part of the world. In fact, one of the founding brothers of Iona, Br. Ignatius Doorley, spent the final years of his apostolate in Buenos Aires.
Students and Teachers from Latin America with Br. Kevin Cawley (September 18, 2019)
Photo credit: G. Bullrich