Advent with The Economy of Francesco:

ESPERAR. There is a time for peace and a time for peace.

Four online meetings from Nov. 30 to rediscover the reasons for hope and waiting.

A new economy, inspired by Francis of Assisi, today can and must be an Earth-friendly economy and an economy of peace. It is precisely this commitment to peace that the young men and women of The Economy of Francesco (EoF) have put at the center of the initiative organized for Advent 2023 entitled Esperar. There is a time for peace and a time for peace, starting Nov. 30 with four online meetings, every Thursday of Advent, at 9:00 pm (CET).

“Being economists and entrepreneurs ‘of Francesco’ necessarily means being women and men of peace: not resting until there is peace.” These were the words of Pope Francis at the IV EoF Global Gathering last Oct. 6. In this time of disorientation and in this dark hour of the world, young economists and entrepreneurs, involved in hundreds of activities and projects worldwide, have decided to dedicate four meetings to reflection and listening, on the occasion of Advent, a time of waiting and hope, for everyone.

A collective exercise to rediscover the deep meaning and real reasons to hope, dream and commit to a new world, and to relearn together that hope – civil, social, political – which gives courage, meaning and direction to human action. “It is this hope that today we must exercise daily and rekindle, especially together, in order to start anew in politics, in markets, in businesses that cannot remain places of despair“- the organizers say. “We need to increase virtuous acts and exercises of hope, that must be told to one another and be amplified by the media, because hope is contagious, more than discouragement and a civil despair.”

Thus, a path, amidst reflections, art, music, and spaces for dialogue also to rediscover that other form of hope, which is not achieved through exercise and commitment, because it is, simply, a gift and gratuitousness. “This hope can neither be computed nor predicted, but expected and desired. In fact, there is – the young people recall – a profound link between hope and waiting, as the verb esperar of the Spanish and Portuguese languages suggest in its double meaning of hoping and waiting. We do not generate this hope, it is a gift and as such it cannot be stolen from us by any sadness and despair of the present.”

It is precisely in the light of hope and awaiting that the four meetings will be set up, starting with four reflections-themes that will come from an equal number of significant places. The first theme has been entrusted to the economist Luigino Bruni, who from the Shrine of the Nativity in Greccio will propose The Hope not in vain in the land of the not-yet. From FlorianĂłpolis, the second appointment by Brazilian Father Vilson Groh, dedicated to the theme The poor will always be with you (Mk 14). Directly from Bethlehem, the economist Fadi Kattan and the Caritas Baby Hospital will give testimony to the meaning of Not to be at peace for peace’s sake. Lastly, from St. Peter’s Square, which has long been home to the monument dedicated to the migrant “Angel Unwares”, Amaya Valcarcel, from the Jesuit Refugee Service, will give a reflection on Mt 25: I was a stranger and you welcomed me.

The four meetings, open to all, will be held on a digital platform, in multiple languages.