April 8

 

Earth Month Series
Water
Reflection

There has always been an intimate relationship between human beings and water.  Life began in the waters and, sacred water is used in rites and ceremonies at the heart of many religions. In nature, water is beautiful, refreshing and calming; yet, its power can be frightening and destructive. Its moods react to the moon and the winds. Life is dependent on water. It nourishes life and it can destroy life. In our region, underground geologic formations called aquifers contain, transmit and yield water for our use. Water is their precious gift stored from the rain and the snow. Life cannot continue without water, yet, we have thoughtlessly used it and abused it without thought of the consequences to living creatures and the earth.

Prayer

May we not take the sustaining gift of life-giving water for granted.

Action

Be careful and not wasteful in the use of water. Become familiar with the effects of plastics and other pollutants on the oceans and other bodies of water.  Consider the effects of pesticides on our drinking water especially on Long island where we rely on aquifers. Be aware of the damage of pesticides and chemical fertilizers on our drinking water.

Suggested Reading

For I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground.
Isaiah 44:3

You visit the earth and water it abundantly, enriching it greatly this way… You soften it    with showers and bless its growth, soaking its furrows and leveling its ridges.
Psalm 65:9-12

Everywhere water is a thing of beauty, gleaming in the dewdrops; singing in the summer rain; shining in the ice-gems till the leaves all seem to turn to living jewels; spreading a golden veil over the setting sun; or a white gauze around the midnight moon
John Ballantine Gough

If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water.
Loren Eiseley

We forget that the water cycle and the life cycle are one.
Jacques Yves Cousteau

In one drop of water are found all the secrets of all the oceans.
Kahlil Gibran

Water is the basis of life and the blue arteries of the earth! Everything in the non-marine environment depends on freshwater to survive.
Sandra Postel

In an age when man has forgotten his origins and is blind even to his most essential needs for survival, water along with other resources has become the victim of his indifference.
Rachel Carson

Water is life’s mater and matrix, mother and medium. There is no life without water.
Albert Szent-Gyorgyi

We have the ability to provide clean water for every man, woman and child on the Earth. What has been lacking is the collective will to accomplish this. What are we waiting for? This is the commitment we need to make to the world, now.
Jean-Michel Cousteau

 

Video:   Water

Note:

Many of Suffolk County’s rivers, estuaries, and bays are impaired as a result high levels of nitrogen emanating from residential septic systems and cesspools. The Sisters of St. Joseph are attempting to improve the sewage disposable system at our facility in a cost-efficient sustainable manner while reducing the nitrogen threat to the groundwater.  The sewage disposal system on the Brentwood property is a an old system.  Acceptable modeling indicates that nitrogen would most likely infiltrate from the system into the groundwater.  Utilizing a grant the Sisters of St. Joseph received from the Long Island Community Foundation, a study of alternative sewage treatment options for the Brentwood campus was conducted and it evaluated the requirements for replacing the existing on site wastewater treatment system with innovative alternative wastewater treatment systems. This is now in process. The project will address a threatening environmental issue prevalent in Suffolk County and the region as whole.

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