Caring for our common home

When in Rome… 

We came together 

As people of all faiths and beliefs 

Moved by the need for 

Humanitarian and planetary relief 

And we pledged

To work together, to care

And repair

Our Common Home

When in Rome… 

We spoke 

Of Greater Manchester’s history

Of revolution 

And industry 

And of our region’s call 

To enable good lives for all

To grow from our roots

A place that’s green and fair 

We looked to the future 

To generations to come

And to the need
To protect our planet mum

We shared our values  

Of equity and humanity

And our wish to

Eliminate injustice and poverty 

When in Rome…

We found home 

In a humble gurdwara 

A magnificent mosque

A great synagogue 

In stunning churches

Of all denomination

Places of teaching 

Science and spiritual formation

We felt belonging

In warm welcomes

The sharing food 

Hands, arms, doors held open to include

We talked

As we walked

And reflected, by old thrones 

And trails of stumble stones 

When in Rome…

We grew knowledge 

And understanding 

Of each other, of faith  

And of place

We shared laughs 

And tears

Some Aperol 

Some beers!

We had fun

Shared rituals and runs

Rode e-bikes and scooters 

In the sun

When in Rome…

We named the challenges 

The social and planetary fragility 

And instability 

The culture flaws and wars

We talked 

Of consumption, distraction 

Planetary extraction  

And the call, for action

We spoke of the need

To heal divisions and scars

That separate people 

Behind walls and bars

We sowed hope

A boy 

And his bucket

And the teachings of a humble Pope

We discussed 

How integral ecology 

Is deeply rooted in our values

Beliefs and theology 

When in Rome…

We acknowledged 

Our influence and responsibility

To use and grow power 

For change, at this critical hour

We committed to act

With courage and hope

To lead change and fulfil 

Our three pledges to the Pope

We explored 

How to mobilise communities 

At scale and pace, in place

And retrofit our buildings and space

We held hands 

And pledged to take a stand

To increase biodiversity 

Across our lands

We debated

Divesting, from fossil fuels

And investing, in green energy

Green skills, jobs and tools

…Some may say what happened in Rome 

Should stay in Rome, but 

There’s so much we’ve brought home

Including the wish to do more

To put climate and social justice 

At the core

The need to spread and share

The human impulse to care

And our collective longing

To nurture people’s sense of safety and belonging 

We return home...

With greater

Clarity and conviction

Of our purpose and role 

With increased 

Weight of responsibility 

And sense of possibility 

With new language and words

To help us reach 

Beyond eco-nerds!

With a stronger sense 

Of togetherness

Of unity, and community 

And of course

The greatest gift

Of the trip

Is our friendship

Which I know I’lll treasure 


We return home...

From Rome

More spiritually whole

With greater depth to our soul

Greater breadth to our thinking 

With love bursting from our beating hearts

And collectively 

As, oh, so much more 

Than just the sum of our parts

And this is where our real journey 

Now starts...

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