Tuesday, April 20, 2010
A few thoughts toward Earth Day
Nah, it's not on the Church Calendar, although there have been discussions of building a Creation theme into the fall/early winter - the end of the long, green Pentecost season and the preparation for Advent's prophecies of the new creation in Christ.
If a fond memory is right, a copy of this tapestry ^ was the backdrop of a chapel dedicated to prayer for the environment at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in NYC. It represents a scene from the Acts of the Apostles, in which Paul and Barnabas dissuade a crowd from offering animal sacrifice.
Generally speaking, when Christian faith is put into the service of any movement (Divine Right of Kings, Civil Rights, you name it) the Christian content eventually leaks out and something all too worldly is left. Christians tend to be the original "useful idiots" of many causes. So it would be with "Christian Environmentalism." Everything pointing to God will be removed and we'll be left with the occasional picture of Jesus (or some vaguely spiritual guy with a beard) composting in Birkenstocks while we write hymns and prayers to shrubs.
But the Bible's message, taken as a whole, is that the creation is a good gift from the Creator, for our responsible and reverent use. Sane efforts to manage, preserve and share the world's resources can engage all people of good will - Christians add to this a special vocation to lift up thankful prayer to the Creator.