There are so many different days dedicated to Environmental issues: Environment Day, 5 June; World Ocean Day,  8 June;  World Wetlands Day, 2 February; World Water Day, 22 March, and a number of others.

Today is Earth Day and the theme for this year is Invest in Our Planet.  

The first Earth day was celebrated way back in 1970, and for many years it was not acknowledged by anyone other than environmental organisations and a few dedicated environmental journalists. These days are now acknowledged and highlighted by broader society, but sadly they’re used by many merely as a marketing ploy to sell products.

The purpose of these awareness days is to  raise awareness about the ecosystems, the animals and the plants with which we share our home.

We are called upon to take action:

    • plant a tree
    • say no to plastic
    • recycle

Action is good, and there are many things that we, as individuals, can do to make a difference. However, they also provide an opportunity for us to pause and reflect.

It is a reminder for us to think deeply about what it means to be a part of the web of life. To acknowledge we are connected with nature and the world around us, and to consider the responsibility we have as living, breathing, sentient beings.  We are one with the earth and every living thing.

As part of our reflection, we ought to question the way we live. We need to question our consumption and discern ways in which we can live each day with more compassion and gratitude for the earth that sustains us.

Take a moment today to pause in silence to become aware and mindful of life around you:

    • feel the sun on your back,
    • watch birds in flight,
    • walk barefoot,
    • listen to the rain,
    • sit quietly by the water,
    • breathe deeply.


A prayer for our earth

From Laudato Si

All-powerful God, you are present in the whole universe and in the smallest of your creatures.
You embrace with your tenderness all that exists.
Pour out upon us the power of your love,
that we may protect life and beauty.

Fill us with peace, that we may live
as brothers and sisters, harming no one.
O God of the poor,
help us to rescue the abandoned and forgotten of this earth, so precious in your eyes.
Bring healing to our lives,
that we may protect the world and not prey on it,
that we may sow beauty, not pollution and destruction. Touch the hearts
of those who look only for gain
at the expense of the poor and the earth.
Teach us to discover the worth of each thing,
to be filled with awe and contemplation,
to recognize that we are profoundly united
with every creature
as we journey towards your infinite light.
We thank you for being with us each day.
Encourage us, we pray, in our struggle
for justice, love and peace.

~ Pope Francis