This past year has provided many examples of the urgent need to take bold action to protect God’s Creation. From floods and wildfires to record-breaking heatwaves, we have seen climate-impacted weather events across North America and around the world. We have heard the warnings from the latest report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and the concerns coming out of the most recent UN Climate Change Conference, that the global community is not doing enough to mitigate further impacts. With so many overwhelming challenges, it can be tempting to despair. Our Christian faith, however, offers hope for new possibilities and resurrection.
God’s Creation is a sacred gift that we are invited to share in, and to care for. Indigenous communities around the world are at the forefront of efforts to protect the lands they hold sacred. As followers of Jesus, we are called to do our part in sustaining the life of the Earth we all share, to be active in caring for our shared home. We are also called to stand with those who have been made particularly vulnerable to the impact of this ecological crisis because of colonialism, institutionalized poverty, and systemic racism. Partners in low-lying coastal areas, island nations, and arctic regions have been sounding the alarm about the drastic impacts of climate change in their communities. We recognize this leadership and commit ourselves to working in solidarity toward our shared goal of renewing and sustaining the life of the Earth.
As we recognize Earth Day this year (Friday, April 22), let us be hopeful in the face of grief and despair. Let us be committed in our actions in the face of extreme weather events and climate anxiety. Let us demand accountability from our elected leaders in the face of unprecedented challenges. Our faith recognizes the importance and the power of community, of people working together toward a shared vision. We can each take individual steps towards addressing our ecological impact, however we can only fully address the need to mitigate the current crisis we find ourselves in together.
We commend these resources to encourage you on your journey:
- Faithful Climate Conversations prepared by For the Love of Creation
- Season of Creation worship resources
- ELCIC Greening Faith Communities
- Anglican Church of Canada Reconciliation Toolkit
Please join us in reflecting on the ways we can take action together to tackle the challenges we face. As you reflect, please pray with us:
God of Creation, give us hope for the new life we know is possible. Renew our commitments to one another, and to the Earth we share. Help to shoulder our burdens so that we may continue to walk in the ways that you have called us, together; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
The Most Rev. Linda Nicholls
Archbishop and Primate, Anglican Church of Canada
The Rev. Susan Johnson
National Bishop, Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada
The Most Rev. Mark MacDonald
National Indigenous Anglican Archbishop, Anglican Church of Canada