This post marks the launch of the Churches Together in Cumbria Environment Group ‘Caring for our Common Home’ blog. We’ve taken our title (with gratitude and respect) from Pope Francis’s 2016 encyclical Laudato Si’ on the environment and climate change, downloadable from the CAFOD website http://www.cafod.org.uk.
I have come to realise that caring for our environment is not an optional extra for Christians. It is central to our faith and discipleship. Our calling as Christians includes care for the earth, the ‘common home’ we share with other people and with all living creatures. That imperative springs from:
gratitude to God for creation and for life itself
awareness of the interdependence of humans and all living creatures
recognition of the inherent value of every created thing
acceptance of our responsibility to be good stewards of God’s good creation
commitment to a fairer and more just future for the whole world.
Jesus calls us to follow him in showing compassion for the poor, the weak and the vulnerable. It is clear that it is the poor who suffer first and most from environmental damage. I believe in a God of Justice, and justice demands that we take action now to put right the damage we have already caused to this beautiful planet, and make sure we leave our ‘common home’ a better place for future generations.