Dear Companions on the Journey,
It has been said that Americans love campaigns but ignore policy and problem-solving. And so we’re off and running with the campaign for the Democratic nominee for president, and I will be watching along with most of you. But, in the end, it is policy that is important. And, arguably, care for our common earth is central.
Pope Francis has said, “I would like to ask all those who have positions of responsibility in economic, political and social life, and all men and women of goodwill: let us be ‘protectors’ of creation, protectors of God’s plan inscribed in nature, protectors of one another and of the environment.”
As we listen to our political candidates, I hope we can also listen to our faith and our conscience concerning, in this week’s reflection, the environment. I am aware that some consider a faith-infused policy reflection an effort to “impose our beliefs on a secular culture.” Without going into all dimensions of this perennial challenge, I would submit that is precisely as persons of faith that we have something to add to our national conversation. Our faith urges us to actions and policies; it does not disqualify us from making our contribution on this issue.
So, from Pope Francis’ letter on care for our Common Home, we can pray:
ALL-POWERFUL GOD, you are present in the whole universe and in the smallest of your creatures.
You embrace with your tenderness all that exists.
Pour out upon us the power of your love, that we may protect life and beauty.
Fill us with peace, that we may live as brothers and sisters, harming no one.
O God of the poor, help us to rescue the abandoned and forgotten of this earth, so precious in your eyes.
Bring healing to our lives, that we may protect the world and not prey on it, that we may sow beauty, not pollution and destruction. Touch the hearts of those who look only for gain at the expense of the poor and the earth.
Teach us to discover the worth of each thing, to be filled with awe and contemplation, to recognize that we are profoundly united with every creature as we journey towards your infinite light.
We thank you for being with us each day.
Encourage us, we pray, in our struggle for justice, love, and peace. Amen.
What do you think?
And let us pray for/with one another.
The Paulist Center