"All Praise be Yours, my Lord,

through Sister Water,

so useful, lowly, precious and pure",

St. Francis of Assisi

"In Saint Francis' Canticle, as in nature, everything is connected and interrelated. Water, like blood in a living organism, seems to be the element that connects all creatures. Water is in all forms of life. Water is the true source of life.

Whenever we look at water, we admire its beauty and are enchanted by it. We try to understand its mysteries and recognize its importance. We also realize that we need to stop degradation, pollution and the waste of water. We need to reject without compromise the act of transforming water into a consumer product because water is a gift of God and a precious common good. We are called to guarantee access to water.

We should call on governments and institutions to do their part. But we must all do our part. Even small daily actions will add up in the fight to protect water resources and to guarantee life now and tomorrow. The key word is shared responsibility. In the struggle to protect water, not only do we have to keep in mind waste, deterioration, pollution and consumption, but also other dangers such as privatization and the interest of transforming water into merchandise."

by Pilato Pereira OFM Cap

Water and Dignity for All: A challenge for All Nations,

In: World Poverty - Franciscan Reflections, 2007.

The Soetendorp Institute


Jacob Soetendorp Institute for Human Values
Van Wijngaerdenstraat 21
2596 TW The Hague
The Netherlands