At the Franciscan Family Day , an annual celebration for various Franciscan orders that follow the spirituality of St. Francis of Assisi the patron of ecology, Apostolic Nuncio in Kenya and South Sudan has reminded them to care for creation.
Addressing the religious presents the Nuncio said, “You cannot take care of creation while being absent from your community. Our care must include our brothers and sisters in our community. Otherwise our so-called care of creation is mere expression of our whims and desire for glory. Our life turns into a lie if we disconnect care of creation from care of Religious Life,” Archbishop Megen added.
He reminded the Franciscan family of the need for faithfulness in caring for creation and religious community saying, “If we desire to become true stewards of the cosmos which the creator has entrusted to us, we need to first and foremost be true stewards of that micro-cosmos in which we live that is our religious community because whoever is faithful with very little is also faithful with a lot, and whoever is dishonest with the little is also dishonest with a lot.”
Archbishop Megen underscored the need to cherish the memory of our existence within relations during the Season of Creation citing St. Francis of Assisi who said, “We exist only in relationships with God the creator, with our brothers and sisters as members of a common family and of all God’s creatures within our common home, and it is only within community that we find salvation.”
He further said that St. Francis teaches that we are “intrinsically connected to the universe and that we are part of the great design of creation in which each and every one of us has his proper place and role.”
Quoting Pope Francis’ encyclical letter Laudato Si’ Archbishop Megen emphasized that “If we want to play a role in the salvation of creation, we must first and foremost work for our personal salvation,” hence “the genuineness in our relationship with nature is inseparable from fraternity, justice and faithfulness to others.”
On the theme of the celebration which happens to be the same theme for the Season of Creation, an annual event to be commemorated from September 1 to October 4 the feast of St. Francis of Assisi,” the Apostolic Nuncio said, “We are celebrating the Jubilee for the earth, which is a sacred time to remember, to return, to rest, to restore and to rejoice.”
Reiterating the Holy Father’s message on World Day of Prayer for Care of Creation Archbishop Megen said, “the Holy spirit is inspiring individuals and communities around the world to come together to rebuild our common home and to defend the most vulnerable in our midst.”
The Apostolic Nuncio further said reminded the Franciscan family of who said the message of Pope Emeritus Benedict XIV, “The growth of consumption of creation begins where God is missing, where matter has become simply material for us, where we ourselves are the ultimate measure and everything is simply our property. So, the Season of Creation should be a moment of reflection to see how many times we have used our fellow human beings for our own selfish purposes.”
“Let us continue to grow in awareness that we all live in a common home as members of a single family as members of a single religious community in Christ,” concluded the Nuncio.
From Sr. Jecinter Antoinette Okoth, FSSA ( Read original Post)
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