This week in honor of Earth Day (April 22) and with a recognition of the hope of Easter, three ecumenical organizations in Canada released a video featuring a “collective collage of voices” lamenting and grieving over damage done to the earth and committing to action toward repair.
The Canadian Council of Churches (CCC); Citizens for Public Justice; and KAIROS, an ecological justice and human rights mission, created the production jointly. “We received submissions from over 15 churches and organizations with close to 20 voices,” said KAIROS executive director Jennifer Henry in a letter of thanks to participants. The Christian Reformed Church, which is a member of CCC, was represented by Canadian ministries director Darren Roorda and by Danielle Steenwyk-Rowaan and Cindy Stover, who both work for the CRC’s justice ministries, including the Centre for Public Dialogue and the Office of Social Justice.
Peter Noteboom, general secretary of CCC, who is also a member of First CRC in Toronto, Ont., said in the video, “We commit as faith leaders to play our part to honestly and directly name our crisis, to raise awareness of its urgency, and to encourage transformative actions.”
The Centre for Public Dialogue is raising awareness with education, resources, and advocacy through its website. An April 18 action alert asked constituents to contact their Member of Parliament to ask for further reductions of greenhouse gas emissions and consider ending subsidies to the oil and gas sector.
In his clip, Roorda talked about positive changes we see when “our lifestyles align with God's better way.” He referenced the book of Genesis and “one of the earliest directives God gave us, which is to be good stewards of the earth.”
“That is the most compelling reason for me,” Roorda said of making changes for creation care. “If God desires it, it's for good reason.”
“What I mean by this is the theology should drive behavior first,” Roorda explained to The Banner. “We may have all sort of scientific or other motivation (including fear), but as Christian people ,,, it is God who should chart our path.”
Steenwyk-Rowaan, in her clip, said, “I hope that Christians can come together across political and theological lines at this moment of urgent need for creation, to care for creation the way God has called us to.”
The #ForTheLoveOfCreation video can be streamed from the websites of the three launching organizations. Here’s the link from the Canadian Council of Churches.