October 8: After a silent breakfast at Romita di Cesi, we made our farewells, and until mid-afternoon we took to mountain paths, not so severe as the climb up, but still, for me, hard on my knees, which required attention when we settled in Spoleto that evening. The last part of the walk was on roads to Baiano, where we took a bus to complete our journey into Spoleto where we stayed at the Catholic Centro di Pastorale Giovanile – our first night on the floor – i.e. no beds or bunks but sleeping mattresses. (The evening was occasion to celebrate AG’s birthday.) In Spoleto Benedict Avodi, (pictured below) who works for the office of Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation, (JPIC) of the Franciscan Capuchin friars in Rome joined the pilgrimage for a few days until Assisi, (he hope to return later if possible). Here he writes his reasons for taking part: “I joined this walk because of several reasons. First, being a Franciscan friar, I follow the values, charism and spirituality of St. Francis who loved and promoted the care of creation. His cosmic fraternity was based on treating creation with respect and dignity for each creature as our own brothers and sisters. As such he wrote the canticle of creatures that refers to each creature as brother or sister, eg. Brother sun, sister moon, etc. Second, I am on this pilgrimage because I believe that the effects of climate change affects us all and as such we need to advocate for climate justice. Being from Kenya, Africa, I have witnessed change of climate including lack of rain, droughts, high temperatures, etc – this has led to hunger, extreme poverty, and also internal displacement of peoples, migration and subsequently climate refugees within and outside the country. This is also indirectly causing conflict and wars in Africa. For example in Kenya, the pastoralist can no longer find pasture for their animals, so they have to move south where they could water their animals, this makes them to enter into conflict with the farmers who are mostly along the rivers. Third, being a Catholic, I follow the call of our pope Francis who recently released his encyclical on the “Laudato si, the Care of our common home”. In this letter to the faithful, the pope appeals to all Catholics and people of good will around the world to listen to the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor. Thus the effects of climate change affects all of us but more specifically the most vulnerable, the poor.
Read moreAssisi – October 12