Sandesh Manuel will participate in the Laudato Si’ Festival “Songs for Creation.”
Laudato Si’ Festival “Songs for Creation will lift up the cry of the Earth and shed light on biodiversity problems around the world on Saturday during Laudato Si’ Week.
Saturday 22 May
13:00 New York / 19:00 Rome
Check your time zone here
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The festival will showcase artists from around the globe, including from Kenya, Italy, Spain, Argentina, India, and elsewhere. The artists will share how Catholics can better care for all members of creation and advocate for all species during this special year for biodiversity.
In October, at the UN Biodiversity Conference (COP15), the world will have the opportunity to set meaningful and robust targets to protect creation.
Before then, Catholics have a responsibility to raise our voices on behalf of all members of creation and all biodiversity. To that end, GCCM has launched the “Healthy Planet, Healthy People” petition. Sign the petition and share it on social media.
Before the festival, the Global Catholic Climate Movement spoke with some of the artists about what the opportunity means to them and what they’re most looking forward to about the “Songs for Creation” festival.
During the live event, the Vatican’s message for World Biodiversity Day also will be revealed and the winners of the #LaudatoSiMoment photo contest and Laudato Si’ story contest will be announced.
What does it mean to you to be performing in the festival?
Nancy Uelmen of Gen Verde (Italy): We feel very honored and excited to be part of this special celebration!
Francisco Andrés Flores of Filocalia (Argentina): For us it is very exciting to be able to participate and share our music. It is a moment of joy, but also of responsibility, commitment and empathy with so many people who are suffering in the world. At this moment many people are suffering, for multiple causes: violence, human trafficking, natural disasters, diseases… Our heart and our voices are with them, and with the memory of the people who have departed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. This festival is an opportunity to make our humble contribution, praying together for the care of our common home, for those who suffer, for those who sustain the effort to care for life, and for the end of violence and pandemics.
Steeven Kezamutima of the Waka Waka band (Kenya): As a group of young artists from Africa, we are trying to be the role models of other artists in Africa…. It’s good that we’ll be a part of this global platform so that we can show that African young people, artists, that we are doing it. And this will also inspire other artists in Africa… We are not just regional, we are up there.
Also, it’s an opportunity to show to the world we are doing something… We can, we have talents, and we can use those talents properly to care for our common home.
Sandesh Manuel (India/Austria): It’s a great opportunity as a Franciscan to speak and sing about Mother Nature. I am so proud to be a Franciscan and a disciple of St. Francis.
Luca Terrana (Italy): For me, being selected for the festival is a source of pride and joy. And I sincerely thank all those who made it possible.
How important is Laudato Si’ Week to you all?
Nancy Uelmen of Gen Verde: We feel this is a really special opportunity to be united with the entire Church all over the world as we try to put into practice the spirit of Laudato Si’ and help others to realize the huge importance of taking concrete action now.
Francisco Andrés Flores of Filocalia (Argentina): Laudato Si’ Week is a special opportunity that allows us to reconnect with our environment and with nature, with the life from which we come and of which we are a part. It reminds us that we are not the owners of the planet, but only guests, in which we must coexist among ourselves and with other living beings, and for that we must learn to share. And that everything God has given us carries with it an enormous responsibility: to care for and protect it, for ourselves and for future generations. Laudato Si’ Week is a beautiful opportunity to walk together towards a true ecological conversion.
Luca Terrana: Laudato Si’ Week is important to make the whole world aware of our Christian mission to safeguard, indeed save, our common home.
Sandesh Manuel: Laudato Si’ is for me very important because it’s the need of the hour and everyone is obligated to contribute something because it’s our Mother Earth and we need to keep and maintain a better Earth for our children to have a better future. This is the commandment of Jesus. To love yourself and the other. To love Mother Earth and the future generation.
What are you most looking forward to about the festival?
Francisco Andrés Flores of Filocalia (Argentina): We hope it will be the beginning of a path of shared art and faith, a celebration of life, a new space with open doors for committed artists and especially for young people, an expression of fraternity and commitment that will allow us to be part of the change. We believe that art can light the way towards a more fraternal society that cares for and defends all life.
Nancy Uelmen of Gen Verde: We’re really looking forward to joining up with artists from all over the world who are working towards the same goal: to protect and heal our common home. It’s just so powerful to think of each one there in so many different places in the world, but so united!
Luca Terrana: I look forward to watching and listening to other artists who, like me, care about the Laudato Si’ mission.