Later this month Pope Francis will release his encyclical on the environment – on God’s creation. To celebrate this I'd like to offer a few photos for your contemplation.
It is reported that he will use words from St. Francis’ Canticle of the Sun as the opening words – “Praised be…”
|Near San Damiano, Assisi|
In that Canticle, Francis praises the God of creation and addresses all that is made as his sisters and brothers –
|Water spigot in Assisi|
Brother Wind, Brother Death, and even Mother Earth.
Living in the countryside since last December, I have often been moved by the beauty of nature:
The flowering trees:
The beautiful landscapes:
The cicadas and birds that sing outside my window:
|Chiquirín - cicada|
The izote and coffee bushes in flower:
|Flor de izote|
Even the spider web, sparkling in the dew:
And so much more.
But I also see the devastation that humans are wreaking on Mother Earth:
Trees are being cut down to enlarge coffee farms.
Hillsides are being burnt – to provide for grazing lands or more coffee fields.
People build with little concern for the effects on nature. Trash is just thrown wherever.
I pray that we may begin to take seriously the call to respect all creation, which is, after all, a gift of God.