Ukrainian Catholic Church of the Transfiguration


Laudato, Si: Can we look beyond our own self-interest?

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As we begin the new liturgical year, I think of our journey together since our small family officially joined the parish family.  Together, as a community, we move in prayer towards learning how to live each day with deeper understanding of God’s love in us and around us. This learning is life-long, forever new, forever challenging, forever expanding. It is at once exciting and scary too—because real learning means we might see differently and more scary still—we might have to act differently. Living our Faith inevitably pushes us beyond our personal comfort zones. But that’s why it’s so good that we have each other—our parish family.

As the world faces climate crisis and social breakdown, Church leaders have issued an invitation to all people of good will to join forces to create effective positive action towards a better future. Last week I spoke of us joining the global “Laudato Si” movement and recognizing its holistic goals:  7 goals for each of us to embrace and actualize in the next 7 years of our life.

Pope Francis calls each of us “to undergo an “ecological conversion,” that develops our awareness of the relationships between Creator, creation, and all our brothers and sisters.” “Through this conversion, the effects of our encounter with Jesus Christ become evident in our relationship with the world around us, as we seek to protect our brothers and sisters by protecting the home we share.” (Laudato Si’, 217) Since “conversion naturally becomes action” Laudato Si will provide a plan of suggested actions for each goal on October 4th, the close of the Month of Creation. This document will help us choose concrete actions that will flow from our desire to build integral ecology in our own community and in our own lives.

Please take time to carefully read the historic joint message issued by the Pope (Catholic), the Ecumenical Patriarch (Orthodox), and the Archbishop of Canterbury (Anglican), for the “Protection of Creation”. Their words to us can begin and deepen our—your, my—ecological conversion, so that we together create peace, carry hope, and generate joy.  (SEE: Joint Message for the Protection of Creation)

This Monday we have the privilege of casting our vote for our country’s leadership. Each vote helps shape our collective response to “creation, and all our brothers and sisters.” Can we look beyond our own self-interest and beyond the political rhetoric of elections to choose politicians who care for the well-being of people more than that of the economy? The true value of a society lies in its care for those who are most vulnerable.  May we choose well.

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