Friday, April 23, 2010

Faith Facts Friday -- Earth Day Late Edition

Since Earth Day was yesterday, and it was not Friday, I made an executive decision to wait and publish something in honor of creation today in Faith Facts Friday. Stewardship is treated in the 7th Commandment: Thou Shall Not Steal. Why would it be there? Well, when we have been given stewardship of creation by God, it is for our use, it does not belong to us. Thus, we have an obligation to treat creation with care and to use it wisely and in the ways God intended.

Today, our faith facts are taken from the Catechism of the Catholic Church from the section on the 7th Commandment, under the subtitle: Respect for the integrity of creation.


The seventh commandment enjoins respect for the integrity of creation. Animals, like plants and inanimate beings, are by nature destined for the common good of past, present, and future humanity. Use of the mineral, vegetable, and animal resources of the universe cannot be divorced from respect for moral imperatives. Man's dominion over inanimate and other living beings granted by the Creator is not absolute; it is limited by concern for the quality of life of his neighbor, including generations to come; it requires a religious respect for the integrity of creation. (CCC, 2415)


God entrusted animals to the stewardship of those whom he created in his own image. Hence it is legitimate to use animals for food and clothing. They may be domesticated to help man in his work and leisure. Medical and scientific experimentation on animals is a morally acceptable practice if it remains within reasonable limits and contributes to caring for or saving human lives. (CCC, 2417)


It is contrary to human dignity to cause animals to suffer or die needlessly. It is likewise unworthy to spend money on them that should as a priority go to the relief of human misery. One can love animals; one should not direct to them the affection due only to persons. (CCC, 2418)

God's creation is meant for our use. We have an obligation to use it fairly and wisely. Animals are meant under His design for creation to be food, to help man work, to also be treated with loving kindness. These things do not contradict each other. Man is also meant to love his neighbor in creation, as well; he should look to provide for the needs of others with the material goods that he has attained, starting first with his own family.

It is quite clear that what we need to make Earth Day truly resonate with all who wish to show creation respect is a lesson in Charity -- the kind of Charity that gives glory and honor to God for providing such a marvelous creation for us.

Blessings to all -- Happy Belated Creation Day! -- I mean, Earth Day.

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