Last week, in honor of Earth Day, thousands of us in the GreenFaith community came together.
I hope you were able to feel the connection we have with each other, even as we can’t physically meet.
Were you able to join in the globally live-streamed Interfaith Call for Care and Resilience? Or maybe you participated in one of the dozens of local Circles of Care and Resilience that held online Pray-Ins to nourish each other, take action to protect each other, and fight against injustice? Or maybe you saw Reverend Fletcher holding a Pray-In himself at fossil fuel investments at global financial firm BlackRock. You may also have watched the beautiful interfaith service at the National Cathedral in Washington DC where GreenFaith board member Rev. Leo Woodberry preached.
GreenFaith members from Australia to Puerto Rico to Uganda held Pray-Ins for Earth Day --moving, meaningful, and spirited. Our sister Madeline from Rhode Island, United States, described how her group shared how important it is to “stay connected, to show care and resilience for each other in good times and in bad. They are living examples of God’s love for us as they join with the younger generation to continue to envision and work for a world where all can live in harmony with the earth.”
We know that these are unprecedented times but we also know that our work of building a loving, just, and compassionate world is more urgent than ever before.
Benki Piyako, a leader of the Ashaninka tribe, an indigenous community in the Amazonian state of Acre opposing destructive development, said during the Earth Day InterFaith Call for Care and Resilience:
“We are seeing how the earth is being destroyed….we as human beings are going through a calling, and it should be heard by each and every one who lives on this earth. I believe this calling is here for us to reflect, and we have to start now.”
Swami Dayananda, a senior Hindu monk at Yogaville ashram in the US state of Virginia, who has organized a multi-faith, multi-racial coalition in opposition to a proposed major fossil fuel pipeline, said this:
“We came together to focus on environmental justice issues, building an unlikely alliance between Baptists and Yogis. We found the very universal common value that all faiths share: Love for one another, for creation, for our families, and the environment. We are all one, in the spiritual oneness of all. Our togetherness will never be broken.”
This is the time to bring our vision to life: A world in which we are connected to each other and with all of nature; a world filled with joy instead of despair; and a world of justly distributed power instead of privilege. We, as people of faith spirit, are called to work with greater urgency than ever.
Thank you for being part of this wonderful, global, diverse, passionate, and committed GreenFaith community this week of Earth Day and every day. Thank you so much for your support, and we pray that you are safe.
P.S. Join us this week for Thursday’s Faith Community Calls for Care and Resilience at 11 am and 4 pm New York time. We hope you can join us for spiritual reflection and mutual care.