Please read our most current update as of August 9, 2022, HERE. The purposes of this communication are to introduce ourselves, share our intentions behind building a participatory fund, update the community on our progress, and discuss our current grant capacity. As always, we seek to be transparent and are grateful for your patience and support as we continue to learn and navigate our rapidly changing circumstances.
The FSM philanthropy program is the latest chapter in the congregation’s many years of work in compassionate care and embodies our Focus to care for creation in collaboration with others.
Our philanthropy is deeply rooted in our Catholic faith and Franciscan values. We believe that all of creation is interrelated and interdependent. We believe that humankind has a responsibility to serve as stewards of our common home. In Pope Francis’ 2015 encyclical letter Laudato Si’, he highlights that care for the vulnerable and for the earth are necessarily in tandem. We recognize that environmental degradation is linked to social injustice, and we support those who advocate for systemic change.
“Today, however, we have to realize that a true ecological approach always becomes a social approach; it must integrate questions of justice in debates on the environment, so as to hear both the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor.”
Pope Francis, Laudato Si’ (49)
Collaborating with Communities
As we stand for justice for our earth and the marginalized, we know that those people most impacted by poor environmental health hold the wisdom to craft solutions for their communities. Our philanthropy program primarily supports grassroots organizations led by and accountable to those on the frontlines of climate change and environmental degradation, who are disproportionately communities of color and low-income communities.
FSM Grant-Making Strategy
While all issues related to care for creation are deeply interrelated, our efforts are concentrated into three areas where we believe FSM is most uniquely positioned to be supportive and make an impact in communities. These are:
- Inspiring Catholic action on climate justice globally
- Advancing the environmental justice movement in the Midwest
- Growing a just, sustainable food system locally
We express the FSM presence and spirituality through a deeply relational approach to grant-making, providing not only dollars but also our time, energy, prayers, and presence.