Human ecology

The Christian Ecosystem

“God blessed them and God said to them: Be fertile and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it. Have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, and all the living things that crawl on the earth. God also said: See, I give you every seed-bearing plant on all the earth and every tree that has seed-bearing fruit on it to be your food; and to all the wild animals, all the birds of the air, and all the living creatures that crawl on the earth, I give all the green plants for food. And so it happened. God looked at everything he had made, and found it very good.” (Genesis 1:28-31)

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came to be through him, and without him nothing came to be.” (John 1:1-3)

Those of us who have the privilege of living in this region of the country brag about our evergreen environment due to the abundance of rain even during summertime. The growth of our cities, however, is reducing the green areas of the mountains and surrounding fields.

The urban environment congregates crowds as our economic systems have broken the balance of life and work opportunities in rural areas, to the point of continuous and alarming destruction of every human’s common home: planet Earth.

The Word of God wanted to be born on our earth, in our human flesh, to teach us an ecosystem that comes from our intelligence and our heart. An ecosystem with our intelligence, to discover through science and technology new ways to make the land to produce abundantly. An ecosystem in our hearts, that makes us discover each human being on this earth as a brother or sister with the same needs and desires that each one of us has. An ecosystem that is capable of stopping our tendency to accumulation to the point of depriving others of basic needs and leads us to provoke irresponsible waste that damages our beautiful common home: our earth.

The ecosystem of Jesus teaches us to ask only for our daily bread (Luke 11: 3) and to accumulate treasures only in heaven, where there are no thieves or moths to fear. (Matthew 6:19) Only by learning this perennial revolutionary ecosystem can we preserve the beauty and fecundity of our common home, according to the wisdom of our Creator and universal Father.

Our amazing intelligence has created the means to be aware of the many millions of men, women and children in so many regions of the world who have been displaced from their homeland as a result of hunger, persecution or unjust economic inequality. As disciples of Jesus, we have a loving obligation to promote with our lives that this Christian ecosystem is possible, and that it is the only permanent solution for each human being to obtain all the greatness and happiness the Creator desired when bringing us to this world.

In his encyclical Laudato Si’, Pope Francis continues with the solid social doctrine of the church as his predecessors did. Emphasizing the need to care for creation is everyone’s responsibility when creating new sources of work. It is also our obligation not to abuse our earth’s resources and not contaminate the environment in which we live, work, develop and share.

As citizens in this world, each one of us is called to exercise and promote this in our different social environments, when voting in the making of new laws, and in our daily life at home or at work while earning our daily bread.

By putting our faith into practice every day, we certainly risk being excluded or being labeled as too radical. God as Father, who did not abandon Jesus, Mary and Joseph in his pilgrimage on this earth and through Jesus taught his disciples to trust in his doctrine, will not abandon us in our audacious attempts to be his witnesses.

Let us trust in the wisdom of the Holy Spirit of God, who has guided his followers throughout the centuries and will continue guiding us in our daily walk to be a joy and blessing for our world.

Read the Spanish version of this column.

Northwest Catholic - September 2019

Bishop Eusebio Elizondo

Eusebio Elizondo, M.Sp.S., is auxiliary bishop of Seattle and vicar for Hispanic ministry.

Eusebio Elizondo, M.Sp.S., es obispo auxiliar de Seattle y vicario para el ministerio hispano.