To make the Pope’s encyclical a springboard for building a professional future based on respect for nature and creation so as to guide the younger generations toward safeguarding and protecting our common home: the Earth. This is the call that 9 carefully-selected young communications professionals accepted when they gathered together in India for a 3-month-long Global Fellowship Program organized by SIGNIS, the World Catholic Communications Association, in collaboration with Jesuit-run Xavier University in Bhubaneswar. The course focused on the meanings, messages and proposed action strategies found in the Laudato Si’ encyclical.
Coming from Italy, India, Philippines, Africa and Latin America, the participants were trained to utilize the encyclical’s communication strategies concerning integral and lasting human development in order to create a public and popular culture around Laudato Si’ over time and across faiths.
The objective of the course was to sensitize young communications professionals to the critical challenges facing the Earth today so as to shape action strategies aimed at nurturing our common home. The subjects treated in the 3-month program included the social teachings of the Church at the basis of Laudato si’, input concerning the stance of different religions to preserving the earth, conferences on the foundations of communication, alternative communication paradigms and sustainable communication design. The result of this intensive experience was the group project Unfold Nest–an interactive, multi-narrative, transmedia flip book that gives the public the chance to listen to the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor and undergo an eco-conversion leading to the conservation and protection of our planet. At the end of the course, the participants received a certificate in Compassion and Social Communication.