A flourishing humanity on a thriving earth in an evolving universe all together filled with the glory of God: such is the global vision of creation we are called to at this critical age of earth’s distress. The immediate aim is to establish and protect healthy ecosystems where all creatures, including poor human beings, can thrive. The long term goal is a socially just and environmentally sustainable society in which the needs of all people are met and species in the natural environment can prosper, onward to an evolutionary future that will still surprise. Ignoring the urgent call to be converted to the earth keeps people of faith and our churches, synagogues, mosques and temples locked into irrelevance while a terrible drama of life and death is being played out in the real world. By contrast, living the ecological vocation in the power of the Spirit sets us off on a great adventure of mind and heart that expands the repertoire of our love.
Lift up your eyes and behold who has created these things.
Visit the site A Billion Acts of Green. What can you do to work to restore the health of earth?
Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand.
Simply put ecological conversion means falling in love with the earth as an inherently valuable living community in which we participate, and bending every effort to be creatively faithful to its well-being, in tune with God who loves it unconditionally.
The Spirit of God is present within the world continuously sustaining its existence; the natural world is the dwelling place of God’s Spirit, able to speak in its own voice about the glory of its Maker.
In our day, a new awareness of the magnificence of Earth as a planet that hosts life is growing among people everywhere. It is an ecological consciousness, pervaded by wonder at earth’s living beauty and, simultaneously, by distress at its despoiling.
The natural world enjoys its own intrinsic value before God. It is not created simply for human use; nor is it only an instrument to serve our needs. We can no longer reduce divine care to one newly arriving species, homo sapiens. Far from being a mere backdrop for our human lives or a stage for our drama, the natural world is a beloved creation valued by God for its own sake.
The ecological crisis makes clear that the human species and the natural world will flourish or collapse together. But given the long eclipse of interest in other species, the mandate now is to bring the buzzing, blooming world of life back into focus.