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Augustinians Support World UN Environment Day, June 5, 2013

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Augustinians of the Midwest are encouraged to mark the United Nations' World Environment Day, June 5, 2013, in their communities and ministries. The Augustinians invite and encourage all who identify with Augustinian spirituality and traditions to do likewise.

Augustinians of the Midwest are encouraged to mark the United Nations' World Environment Day, June 5, 2013, in their communities and ministries. The Augustinians invite and encourage all who identify with Augustinian spirituality and traditions to do likewise.

Stewardship of God's Creation is one of the major themes of traditional Catholic Social Teaching. The Catholic Church teaches that the goods of the Earth are gifts to everyone from God, and they are intended by God for the common good of everyone.

Stewardship finds its basis in the Book of Genesis in the Bible, which relates that God entrusted all creation to humans, who are to have dominion over it and care for it as stewards. (--See Gen 1: 28-32; Gen 2: 15)

The concept of Stewardship fits well with the Augustinian idea of communality of goods, one of the basic principles of St. Augustine's vision and spirituality of religious community life.

The Rule of St. Augustine says, "Call nothing your own, but let everything be yours in common. . . For so you read in the Acts of the Apostles that 'they had all things in common. . .'" (Acts 4:32,35) and ". . .whenever you show greater concern for the common good than for your own, you know that you are growing in charity."

The principle of Stewardship says that because the world is ours in common, all people have a responsibility to care for the Earth as stewards or trustees. We are more than just consumers and users of natural resources.

How we care for the common good of all through our respect for the environment is a measure of our stewardship, our charity toward others and our respect for the Creator.

World Environment Day, celebrated each June 5, is one of the ways in which the United Nations works to make the world's population aware of the environment and to encourage people and governments around the world to take actions that promote the common good by promoting a healthy environment.

 

2013 World Environment Day Theme

Think - Eat - Save is the theme of World Environment Day for 2013. 

The world is capable of producing enough food to feed its population. but distributing adequate food to all people in all places is a challenge.

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that every year 1.3 billion metric tonnes (1.43 U.S. tons) of food -- equal to the entire food production of sub-Saharan Africa -- are lost or wasted each year world-wide.  

Much food is lost along the entire chain of food production and transport.  Consumers, retailers and the hospitality industry are responsible for a large amount of food waste.

Meanwhile, one in seven people in the world go to bed hungry each day, and 20, 000 children under 5 years old die of hunger daily, according to F.A.O. estimates.

"Given this enormous imbalance in lifestyles and the resultant devastating effects on the environment, this year's theme -- Think - Eat - Save -- encourages you to become more aware of the environmental impact of the food choices you make and empowers you to make informed decisions," the U. N. World Environment Program said.

"This year's campaign rallies you to take action from your home and then witness the power of collective decisions you and others have made to reduce food waste, save money, minimize the environmental impact of food production and force food production processes to become more efficient," World Environment Program said.

 

World Environment Day Prayer

World Environment Day Prayer Services
             Suggested Augustinian prayers from International Justice and Peace Secretariate, Rome:

World Environment Day Prayer Service - Model 1

World Environment Day Prayer Service - Model 2

World Environment Day Prayer Service - Model 3

 

More World Environment Day Resources

 

-- Permission is granted to download, duplicate and distribute Prayer Service Model 1 and Prayer Service Model 2 for World Environment Day for use as an aid to prayer. Please credit the Augustinian Secretariate for Justice and Peace and www.midwestaugustinians.org/justice-peace.  Include the words “Used with permission” if printed or otherwise published.  Permission inquiries for Prayer Service Model 3 should be directed to the copyright holder at J.P.I.C.