WASHINGTON – Archbishop Paul S. Coakley of Oklahoma City and Bishop David J. Malloy of Rockford, respective chairmen of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committees on Domestic Justice and Human Development and International Justice and Peace, issued a pastoral message for the annual World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation:
“September 1 marks the five-year anniversary of the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation in the Catholic Church. On this day last year, Pope Francis encouraged the faithful to observe the Season of Creation – an ecumenical initiative that begins September 1 and ends on October 4, the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi – through increased prayer and a simpler lifestyle.
“Once again, we unite in prayer with the Holy Father, who reminded us that ‘every member of the human family can act as a thin yet unique and indispensable thread in weaving a network of life that embraces everyone.’ To weave the network of life, we set our sights on the ‘Author of Life’ (Acts 3:15) and pray for help to heal our ailing planet.
“We invite every Catholic and all people of good will who care for our common home in the United States to increase efforts towards ecological conversion during this Season of Creation. May our prayers and our witness reflect the words and deeds of Jesus, who ‘went about doing good and healing’ (Acts 10:38).”
Resources for responding to the moral and spiritual challenges of the ecological crisis can be found here.
PHOTO: Children plant trees on the feast of St. Francis October 2019 in Indianapolis. Dioceses and other organizations around the world are planning to mark the fifth anniversary of Pope Francis’ encyclical on care for creation with online events and prayers during Laudato Si’ Week May 16-24, 2020. (CNS photo/Archdiocese of Indianapolis CreationCare Commission)