Our Sister Mother Earth

Barb Spies, OFS, Director of Mission Services and Pastoral Care

St. Francis wrote a canticle that has been recited for more than 800 years, praising God for each aspect of creation. “Laudato si’, mi’ Signore, per sora nostra Madre Terra:” Praised be You, my Lord, through our Sister Mother Earth. This phrase begins one of the stanzas. Pope Francis took the beginning of that phrase for his enclyclical on Care for Our Common Home, “Laudato si’.”

On Earth Day, we are reminded of the care for creation that should be at the forefront of our minds and our actions each day. I have written before at how St. Francis spoke of “Sister Water, which is very useful and humble and precious and chaste.” Francis offers beautiful imagery in his canticle.

The Felician Sisters of North America have taken a coporate stand that “We will care for our common home.” They note, “As a Franciscan community, we are dedicated to being responsible stewards of the environment. We advocate for responsible public policy and implement “green” initiatives at our convents and ministries, including:

Using Materials Wisely: When possible, we repair, reuse, recycle and compost.

Preserving the Outdoors: We promote rainwater preservation, maintenance of green spaces and organic gardening.

Speaking Out as Investors: In 2021, we worked with Green Century Capital Management and filed a shareholder proposal for a commitment to not engage in mining for titanium on Trail Ridge along the Okefenokee Wildlife Refuge — the world’s largest intact freshwater wetlands. An agreement was reached but the fight continues

Using Solar Power: Since 2017, the solar power used at Felician properties across the United States is expected to avoid 110 million pounds of CO2 emissions over its 35-year lifetime.

Joining with Others: As a congregation, we have committed to developing a Laudato Si’ Action Plan.”

On Earth Day and every day, may we closely examine the way we affect God’s creation and how we can work to protect what God has provided for ourselves and for future generations.  

Blessed Angela: “Everything which God wants is good. We should desire that what he wants.”

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