September 4

Reflection

When we speak of the “environment”, what we really mean is a relationship existing between nature and the society which lives in it. Nature cannot be regarded as something separate from ourselves or as a mere setting in which we live. We are part of nature, included in it and thus in constant interaction with it. Recognizing the reasons why a given area is polluted requires a study of the workings of society, its economy, its behavior patterns, and the ways it grasps reality. Given the scale of change, it is no longer possible to find a specific, discrete answer for each part of the problem. It is essential to seek comprehensive solutions which consider the interactions within natural systems themselves and with social systems. We are faced not with two separate crises, one environmental and the other social, but rather with one complex crisis which is both social and environmental. Strategies for a solution demand an integrated approach to combating poverty, restoring dignity to the excluded, and at the same time protecting nature.
Pope Francis, Laudato Si

Prayer

Grant us the grace to respect and care for Your creation.
Bless all of your creatures as a sign of Your wondrous love.
Help us to end the suffering of the poor and bring healing to all of your creation.
Help us to use our technological inventiveness to undo the damage we have done to Your creation and to sustain Your gift of nature.
O God, hear our prayer.

Action

Be informed and take action. Google September 20 Climate Strike.
Go to: https://350.org/support-climate-strikes/

Suggested Reading

Never have we so hurt and mistreated our common home as we have in the last two hundred years.
Laudato Si (53)

True statecraft is manifest when, in difficult times, we uphold high principles and think of the long-term common good.
Laudato Si (178)

Obstructionist attitudes, even on the part of believers, can range from denial of the problem to indifference, nonchalant resignation or blind confidence in technical solutions. We require a new and universal solidarity.
Laudato Si (14)

Living our vocation to be protectors of God’s handiwork is essential to a life of virtue; it is not an optional or a secondary aspect of our Christian experience.
Laudato Si (217)

Young people demand change. They wonder how anyone can claim to be building a better future without thinking of the environmental crisis and the sufferings of the excluded.
Laudato Si (13)

Reducing greenhouse gases requires honesty, courage and responsibility, above all on the part of those countries which are more powerful and pollute the most.
Laudato Si (169)

=ery solid scientific consensus indicates that we are presently witnessing a disturbing warming of the climatic system. In recent decades this warming has been accompanied by a constant rise in the sea level and, it would appear, by an increase of extreme weather events, even if a scientifically determinable cause cannot be assigned to each particular phenomenon. Humanity is called to recognize the need for changes of lifestyle, production and consumption, in order to combat this warming or at least the human causes which produce or aggravate it.
Laudato Si (23)

If present trends continue, this century may well witness extraordinary climate change and an unprecedented destruction of ecosystems, with serious consequences for all of us.
Laudato Si (24)

Along with the importance of little everyday gestures, social love moves us to devise larger strategies to halt environmental degradation and to encourage a “culture of care” which permeates all of society.
Laudato Si (231)

The entire material universe speaks of God’s love, his boundless affection for us. Soil, water, mountains – everything is, as it were, a caress of God.
Laudato Si (84)

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