Pope Francis Laments ‘Mother Earth Violated and Devastated’

In his annual message for the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, the pontiff urges people of faith to embrace “creation as an earthly paradise, mother earth, which is meant to be a place of joy and a promise of happiness for all.”

Harmony among men and women “should also be extended to creation,” he writes in the message released Thursday, “in a sense of responsibility for a humane and integral ecology, the path to salvation for our common home and for us who inhabit it.”

Through sin, creation “was enslaved, albeit through no fault of its own, and finds itself unable to fulfill the lasting meaning and purpose for which it was designed,” he states. “It is subject to dissolution and death, aggravated by the human abuse of nature.”

Therefore, the Holy Spirit “continually guides us and calls us to conversion, to a change in lifestyle in order to resist the degradation of our environment,” he contends.

This conversion “entails leaving behind the arrogance of those who want to exercise dominion over others and nature itself, reducing the latter to an object to be manipulated,” he adds, “and instead embracing the humility of those who care for others and for all of creation.”

To claim the right to possess and dominate nature “represents a form of idolatry,” Francis declares, “a Promethean version of man who, intoxicated by his technocratic power, arrogantly places the earth in a ‘dis-graced’ condition, deprived of God’s grace.”

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