ASSISI Formation Program: Animators for Sustainability – October 9th-12th 2012

Assisi Program

Catholic Earthcare will offer the Assisi Program in 2012 and there is more information on their website.

“…someday, after mastering the winds, the waves, the tides, and gravity, we shall harness for God the energies of love, and then, for a second time in the history of the world, humanity will have discovered fire.”

(Pierre Teilhard de Chardin)

Are you wondering …

  • What would it take to animate the call to justice, peace and integrity of creation such that we learn together how to live and work sustainably on our planet?
  • What is required for your organisation to take the transformative journey to ecological sustainability?
  • What wisdom exists in Catholic Teaching that may help you and your organisation respond to the call for ecological conversion and sustaining God’s Creation?
  • What would it take to truly harness the energies of God’s love?

I would like to invite you to participate in the ASSISI Animator for Sustainability Program and, secondly, to pass this invitation to others in your network for whom this might be applicable.

The Animators for Sustainability program is intended for those who are in leadership positions and those who have the capacity to lead change. Our experience in offering this program to date, has taught us that the ideal number of participants from any given organisation would be three or more.

Catholic Earthcare Australia offers ASSISI as a comprehensive and holistic sustainability initiative for organisations to achieve ecological sustainability. This intensive residential program is central to the formation experience for Animators. Participants are required to do some individual preparatory work prior to the program and some follow-up work with peers after the program.

During the course of the formation experience, participants are exposed to contemporary ecological theology, scientific understandings of sustainability and transformative social processes that are aimed to inspire and support you and your organisation on the journey of ecological sustainability. Participants will be invited to become part of Catholic Earthcare’s national network and the participant group will be invited to form a learning community for sustainability as a source of ongoing support.

Would you like to join with others to seek, discern and transform a new way of being that responds to the call for ecological conversion through participation in our ASSISI Formation – Animators for Sustainability program?

“…someday, after mastering the winds, the waves, the tides, and gravity, we shall harness for God the energies of love, and then, for a second time in the history of the world, humanity will have discovered fire.”

(Pierre Teilhard de Chardin)


Desired outcome for all ASSISIwork:

Enabling development of an ecological worldview that manifests in sustainable relationships with God, Earth and all Creation.

Overall purpose of the ASSISI animator formation program:

To build institutional capacity and capability in a range of organisations to facilitate the design and delivery of ASSISI

 Program objectives:

  • To introduce participants to leading social technologies and social processes for transformation
  • To provide an experience of these social processes and of using them to design and deliver a transformational program in their own context. This program will engage the whole system in response to the call for ecological conversion.

Learning outcomes:

  • An understanding of what is required to shift from a fragmented to a systemic way of thinking and being that provides the basis for ecological praxis[2]
  • Capacity to design and deliver a program that is informed by this understanding and that engages the whole system
  • A framework for forming a collaborative learning community[3] in your organisation and for linking to other learning communities to prototype new forms of ecological practice
  • An understanding of how to function as a national network of nodes and patches as a means of building critical mass across Australia.

Three organising frameworks for the program

  • ASSISI as organising framework (building the container)
  • The ASSISI journey as organising framework for my organisation (the outer journey)
  • My own journey as organising framework (the inner journey)

Pre-reading – Book [core reading – please source copies]

  1. Kitchen Table Sustainability: Practical recipes for community engagement with sustainability.2009. Wendy Sarkissian et al. Earthscan, Dunstan House, London
  2. Jesus and the Natural World, 2012, Denis Edwards, Garratt Publishing, Melbourne [Garratt Publishing]

Pre-Reading – Journal articles  [see to download these readings]

  1. Addressing the Blind Spot of our Time An executive summary of Theory U. C. Otto Scharmer.
  2. Seven Acupuncture Points for Shifting Capitalism to Create a Regenerative Ecosystem Economy. 2010. Otto Scharmer. Oxford Leadership Journal. June 2010 • Volume 1, Issue 3
  3. The Blind Spot of Institutional Leadership: How To Create Deep Innovation Through Moving from Egosystem to Ecosystem Awareness. 2010. Otto Scharmer. Paper prepared for: World Economic Forum Annual Meeting of the New Champions 2010 Tianjin, People’s Republic of China, 13-15 September
  4. Planetary Spirituality: Exploring a Christian Ecological Approach. 2011. Denis Edwards
  5. Ecology and Faith in Jesus Christ: Recent Catholic Teaching. 2011. Denis Edwards

Program facilitators:

Jacqui Rémond – National Director, Catholic Earthcare Australia

Megan Seneque – Social Process Advisor to Catholic Earthcare Australia

Luke Edwards – Program Manager, Catholic Earthcare Australia

Additional information:

Please email Sr Mary-Ann Casanova rsj for any additional information – – or visit the Catholic Earthcare website.