Notable quotations from Pope Benedict XVI and official teachings of the Roman Catholic Church
Respect for creation is of immense consequence, not least because "creation is the beginning and foundation of all God's works, "(Catechism of the Catholic Church, 198) and its preservation has now become essential for the pacific coexistence of mankind.
The harmony between the Creator, mankind and the created world ... was disrupted by the sin of Adam and Eve, by man and woman, who wanted to take the place of God and refused to acknowledge that they were His creatures.
The ecological problem must be dealt with not only because of the chilling prospects of environmental degradation on the horizon; the real motivation must be the quest for authentic world-wide solidarity inspired by the values of charity, justice and the common good.
May this be clear to world leaders and to those ... who are concerned for the future of humanity: the protection of creation and peacemaking are profoundly linked.
The ecological crisis offers an historic opportunity to develop a common plan of action aimed at orienting the model of global development towards greater respect for creation and for an integral human development inspired by the values proper to charity in truth.
The quest for peace by people of good will surely would become easier if all acknowledge the indivisible relationship between God, human beings and the whole of creation.
Protecting the natural environment in order to build a world of peace is ... a duty incumbent upon each and all. It is an urgent challenge, one to be faced with renewed and concerted commitment; it is also a providential opportunity to hand down to coming generation the prospect of a better future for all.
I invite all believers to raise a fervent prayer to God ... so that all men and women may take to heart the urgent appeal: If you want to cultivate peace, protect creation.
(Source: Message for World Day of Peace, issued 12/08/09)
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