In Laudato si’, Pope Francis calls us to ecological conversion, and writes that “living our vocation to be protectors of God’s handiwork is essential to a life of virtue.” Watch our conversation with Sister Damien Marie Savino, a Franciscan Sister of the Eucharist and Dean of Science and Sustainability at Aquinas College, as we explore:
- This call to ecological conversion and its meaning;
- The Catholic idea of integral human ecology, and its synthesis with the health, environmental and ecological sciences; and,
- The way forward for integrating care for God’s creation into our daily practices of discipleship.
MEET OUR GUEST
Sister Damien Marie Savino, FSE, Ph.D., is a Franciscan Sister of the Eucharist and currently serves as the Dean of Science and Sustainability at Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Michigan. In this position she oversees the Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Geography and Environmental Studies departments and the college’s Center for Sustainability. Sister Damien Marie received her Bachelor of Science degree in Biogeography from McGill University, her Master of Science degree in Soil and Plant Science from University of Connecticut, her Master of Arts degree in Theology from The Catholic University of America and her Ph.D. degree in Civil (Environmental) Engineering from The Catholic University of America. She has lectured and written widely on Laudato Si’ and integral ecology, as well as on themes related to ecological restoration and resilience theory, ecological health, ecology and theology, and science and faith.
LINKS TO FURTHER VIEWING AND READING
The Interdisciplinary Encyclopedia on Religion & Science: https://inters.org/
Placuit Deo – A letter to the Bishops on Salvation: what fulfills us and the tendencies of Gnosticism and Pelagianism: https://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20180222_placuit-deo_en.html
Trans Mission: What’s the Rush to Reassign Gender? https://youtu.be/rUeqEoARKOA
FROM SISTER DAMIEN MARIE SAVINO
- The Mutual Ennobling of Science and Faith: From Rev. John Zahm, CSC to Laudato Si’, University of Notre Dame Founders’ Day lecture, 2021: https://foundersday.nd.edu/events/2021/10/12/keynote-event/
- Christian Imperatives for Environmental Care, The Grand Dialogue in Science and Religion, Kaufman Interfaith Institute, Grand Valley State University, Allendale, MI, 2021: https://www.gvsu.edu/interfaith/grand-dialogue-8.htm
- An Approach to Pope Francis’ Encyclical Laudato Si’, Talking with Francky, Salt and Light Media, 2021 (podcast): https://slmedia.org/blog/an-approach-to-pope-francis-encyclical-laudato-si
- Dismantling Environmental Racism: Promising Tools in the Laudato Si’ Toolbox, The Catholic Information Center, Grand Rapids, MI, 2020: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RzCzGKK7f2s
- Faith in a Time of Crisis: Salt and Light TV Special on Laudato Si’, 2020: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3O00lptJFe0
- Banana Peels and Climate Change: A Daily Examen, with Dr. Phil Sakimoto, 2019: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5SCcqVUUhBE
- Evangelizing through Land-Based Experience and Dialogue with Science, McGrath Institute for Church Life, University of Notre Dame, 2018: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f4e_wd7-EEU
- Entrusted with the Environment: GIVEN Institute, 2016: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5q3A2m5i2dY
- Sr. Damien: Pro-Life, Pro-Creation, The GIST, the CatholicTV Network, 2016: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WyJ6VDmAMtU
- Women in the Church, Salt and Light Media, Vatican Connections, 2014: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=079344gGupE
- Savino, Sister Damien Marie (2021, in press). “Evangelizing through Land-Based Experiences and Dialogue with Science.” In John Cavadini and Donald Wallenfang, eds. Global Perspectives on the New Evangelization, Volume 3. Eugene, OR: Pickwick Publications.
- Savino, Sister Damien Marie (2021, in press). “No Such Thing as Catholic Chemistry? The Catholic Difference in Teaching Science,” Review for Religious, Special issue on Science and Religion.
- Savino, Sister Damien Marie and Clarage, James (2021). Reconnecting Catholicism with the Sciences: A Model for Teaching Science and Religion Core Texts. In Bridging Divides, Crossing Borders, Community Building: The Human Voice in Core Texts and the Liberal Arts, Selected Papers from the 23rd Annual Conference of the Association for Core Texts and Courses (ACTC), Dallas, April 20-23, 2017, eds., Tuan Hoang and Daniel Nuckols (ACTC Publications, ACTC Liberal Arts Institute).
- Clarage, James, and Savino, Sister Damien Marie (2021). Teaching the Big Bang and Cosmological Education in the Core. In Bridging Divides, Crossing Borders, Community Building: The Human Voice in Core Texts and the Liberal Arts, Selected Papers from the 23rd Annual Conference of the Association for Core Texts and Courses (ACTC), Dallas, April 20-23, 2017, eds., Tuan Hoang and Daniel Nuckols (ACTC Publications, ACTC Liberal Arts Institute).
- Savino, Sister Damien Marie (2018). Proposing an Examen for Living the Ecology of Daily Life and Building a Culture of Care. The Trumpeter: Journal of Ecosophy. Vol. 34, No. 1. Special issue on Laudato Si’.
- “Disputatio on the Distinction between the Human Person and Other Animals: The Human Person as Gardener.” Paper presented at Expanded Reason Congress in Rome, co-sponsored by the Benedict XVI Foundation and the Universidad Francisco de Vitoria, European University of Rome, September 24 -26, 2018.
- Savino, S. D. M. and Hittinger, J. P. (2016). Loss of Creation and its Recovery Through Aquinas and Bonaventure. New Blackfriars, 97: 5–21. doi:10.1111/nbfr.12161
- Savino, Sister Damien Marie (2015). Facilitating Social-Ecological Transformation of a Vacant Lot on an Urban Campus: the Houston-Congolese Connection. Cities and the Environment (CATE): Vol. 8: Iss. 2, Article 4. Available at: http://digitalcommons.lmu.edu/cate/vol8/iss2/4
- Savino, Sister Damien Marie (2015). Nature, Soil, and God: Soils and the ‘Grammar of Nature.’ In Peter Casarella, ed., Jesus Christ: The New Face of Social Progress (pp 311-323). Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.
- Savino, FSE, Sister Damien Marie (2009). Atheistic Science: The Only Option? Logos: A Journal of Catholic Thought and Culture,12(4), 56-73.