By Charles Câmara
The spiritual reflections for practical actions offered by Pope Francis in his encyclical letter “Laudato Si, mi Signore” (Praise be to you, my Lord) published seven years ago in May 2015, outlines a Christian view on the environment, about the humans’ place on earth and our relation with and responsibility towards all beings. The Pope, along with many other religious leaders, exhorts us as individuals, groups and institutions, including the faith-based organisations, to praise the Creator of heaven and earth, and love His creation by caring for all beings on earth. Such reminder is urgently needed, as the world continues to experience increased global warming, climate-related disasters and biodiversity loss. There is still a long way to go before the objectives of the Paris Agreement are attained. While we are involved in humanitarian actions and with influencing the national and global political and economic power-holders to act in ways that benefit all beings, especially the world’s most vulnerable members, we may ask ourselves:
- To what extent have we imbibed Christian spiritual views and values pertaining to creation in the work we are involved in, thereby letting God’s spirit permeate everything we do to become faithful stewards and animators involved in transforming the world?
- Through renewed discernment, could we reconsider some of our strategies and actions, so that more of our work will address the structural root causes of human-induced global warming at the local, national and international levels?
- Isn’t it time for us as people of faith to leave our dogmatic differences aside and instead focus upon that which unites us in our profound desire to combat material poverty, inequalities of various kind, and global warming?