The world we live in is characterized by a dramatic inequality, with 1% of the population enjoying more wealth than the remaining 99%. The riots that erupted in cities around the world have their root causes in social and economic inequalities. Inequality has become unsustainable.
Climate change exacerbates the disparities between poor and rich, with the former suffering the worst consequences even though they are the ones who contribute less to environment degradation. Loss of human as well as animal life, disappearance of the rain forest, chemical contamination, pollution and so many other destructive practices are leading to widespread environmental catastrophies.
In the face of the inequality and devastation of the planet, Pope Francis invited economists and entrepreneurs for a world meeting on a new economy entitled “Economy of Francis,” to be held in Assisi, Italy, on March 26-28, 2020.
Present will be world-renowned economists who are committed to an economy that serves the common good, and is more sustainable, fair and environmentally friendly. Experts such as Jeffrey Sachs, Joseph Stiglitz, Amartya Sen, Vandana Shiva and Muhammad Yunus will attend.
To this end, the Pope sent a message outling the purpose and objectives of the gathering.
The “Economy of Francis” initiative aims to bring together young people “studying economics and interested in a different kind of economy: one that brings life not death, one that is inclusive and not exclusive, one that is humane and not dehumanizing, one that cares for the environment and does not despoil it.”
The intention is to “enter into a covenant to change today’s economy and to give a soul to the economy of tomorrow.” For Francis, it is necessary, to “correct models of growth incapable of guaranteeing respect for the environment, openness to life, concern for the family, social equality, the dignity of workers and the rights of future generations.
At the end of the document, the Pope states that in the face of this urgency we are “called to rethink our mental and moral priorities, to bring them into greater conformity with God’s commandments and the demands of the common good.”
So, Pope Francis is leading the way once again in facing up to the tremendous challenge of reducing inequality and the rate of destruction of the planet. With his initiative around a more sustainable economy he hopes to create a platform of thinkers that can spearhead a movement towards an economy attentive to the person and to the environment.