Gratitude and Responsibility for Creation

Thu, 11/01/2007

The month of November is a time when we remember in a special way the many blessings God has bestowed upon us. This November let us be especially mindful of the gift of creation. For the next several months, Bread for the World in Louisiana will feature articles regarding our responsibility to protect the gift of creation and how our mismanagement of creation is a direct cause of hunger and poverty. In September 1986, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) celebrated its 25th anniversary by bringing together, for the first time in history, five major world religions to declare how their faith leads each of them to care for nature. What resulted were the Assisi Declarations: calls from Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Jewish and Islamic leaders to their own faithful. After Assisi, three more faiths – Baha’i, Jainism and Silhism – produced declarations to accompany those of the other religions. Their messages are of tremendous significance for the future of the environment. In these calls, the interconnectedness of religious and environmental concerns was acknowledged, along with the fundamental importance to all traditions of safeguarding the planet as a common inheritance. “We have entered a new age. An age where all of us will have to sign a new compact with our environment…and enter into the larger community of all living beings. A new sense of our communion with planet Earth must enter our minds.” -Klaus Topfer, Executive Director, UN Environment Programme, 1999