Pope Francis's letter : All brothers

Feast of St Francis. The Pope publishes a third encyclical Fratelli Tutti, in Italian, "all brothers". It is a letter on human fraternity and social friendship. In a situation of pandemic and global ecological crisis, it is more important than ever to learn to live together. Pope Francis states: "Without the fraternity that Jesus has offered us, our efforts for a more just world run out of steam and even the best projects run the risk of becoming soulless structures".

Of course, placing fraternity in the Word of Jesus, "the first born of many brothers" (Letter to the Romans, 8, 29) opens up an infinite horizon, in space and time, to the depths of our existence, to each other. Francis of Assisi was a living witness to this. Think of his meeting with Sultan al-Malik al-Kāmal. In the Canticle of Creatures, he exalts the brotherhood of all creatures, in everything and even in "our sister Death". It shows the foundation of the common house. He sketches out the architecture of this house, through systemic bonds of brotherhood.

Here we recognise the thought of Laudato Si' of Pope Francis.

Laudato Si' has become a reference text on ecology. Published five years ago, it is "Act 1 of a call for a new civilization" wrote Edgar Morin at the time. Since then, we have moved into "integral ecology" mode.

In this perspective, other acts have been made which inspire the letter "All brothers" published on the feast of St. Francis, acts which concern religious plurality as an expression of fraternity. Religious plurality is a call, in multiplicity and difference, to "enter together, as a single family, into an ark that can cross the stormy seas of the world: the ark of fraternity". These words of the Pope were pronounced in 2019, when the "Common Document on Human Brotherhood" was signed with Ahmad Al-Tayyib, the great Imam of Al-Azhar, a prestigious institution of Sunni Islam. Al-Azhar and the Catholic Church ask that "this Document become an object of research and reflection in all schools, universities and institutes", "in order to contribute to the creation of new generations that bring good and peace and defend everywhere the rights of the oppressed and the last". 

Like the dove, peace needs wings to take flight and be sustained, "the wings of education and justice" according to Pope Francis: "Fraternal coexistence is based on education, justice and development" (4 February 2019, Address by Pope Francis at the Interfaith Meeting in Abu Dhabi).