Saturday, September 2, 2017

World Day of Prayer for Creation 2017

In 1994 in one of the first sessions to prepare for my confirmation, I remember our instructor teaching us to repeat after her a phrase that went something like this: ‘I am a unique, wonderful masterpiece of God’s creation.’  What a beautiful and profound message for a teenager to think about as he began to prepare for the sacrament of confirmation.  It is a message we should all reflect upon too today.

 Today we celebrate the World Day of Prayer for Creation (September 1) started by Pope Francis. God’s creation is wonderful, rich and diverse.  Usually we associate today’s celebration with the environment. Just looking around our campus, we see it teeming with plants, trees, flowers, and fields and are thankful for these gifts of God.  Or when we think of God’s creatures we first think of animal life.  

The other night I attended “Bark at the Park” at Arm & Hammer Park in Trenton, an event where dogs were invited to attend the Trenton Thunder baseball game that evening. There were many amazing breeds of dogs, large and small.  All of these things are part of the fabric of God’s wonderful design. 

And at the top of God’s creation on earth stands the human person.  With his hands, mind, heart and will, man is able to carry out so much good for others in our world and is able to glorify God.  What a masterpiece of God’s creation!

Our care for our neighbor is part of what the last three popes have referred to as “human ecology”.  “[T]here is … an ecology of man. Man too has a nature that he must respect and that he cannot manipulate at will” (Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, Address to the German Bundestag, 22 September 2011).   

May we be caretakers and protectors of nature and of all the wonderful things and persons that God has brought into this world!  What a lofty calling on this day of prayer for Creation.

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