German Bishops forget the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows and call all out on climate strike on the 15th September

World Day of Prayer for the Integrity of Creation on 1 September 2023

Translated from the German Bishops Conference website

Auxiliary Bishop Lohmann: Without an intact creation we cannot have "life in abundance"

Every year on September 1, the Church celebrates the World Day of Prayer for the Integrity of Creation, on which in Christian churches liturgically the season of creation (September 1 to October 4) begins. In this regard, Auxiliary Bishop Rolf Lohmann (Münster), who is responsible for environmental and climate issues in the German Bishops' Conference and chairman of the Working Group for Environmental Issues of the Commission for Social and Societal Issues, publishes the following statement today (August 31, 2023):

In the season of creation we remember in a special way our Christian responsibility for the world, for the climate, the environment and biodiversity. Pope Francis, in his message for this year's World Day of Prayer for the Integrity of Creation, focuses on justice and peace, which should "flow [like] an inexhaustible stream of pure water." This requires of us "a right relationship with God, with our fellow human beings and with nature." The Pope warns that our use of natural resources, our way of doing business and our style of consumption are destroying God's creation. In doing so, he repeats his complaint from the encyclical Laudato si' that water "is being plundered and 'turned into commodities and subjected to the laws of the market'" (LS 30). But to promote justice and peace, we would have to change three things: first, in an inner conversion, our relationship with God and with creation; second, our lifestyle; and third, politics.

What the Pope refers to, we see every day in Germany and even more extreme in other parts of the world: the soil dries out, the forests become sick, the weather becomes extreme and the temperatures rise. All this in turn is mutually dependent and is above all a consequence of our human actions. The reckless destruction of nature causes human suffering and leads to many social problems. This summer, water shortages in many regions have shown that our actions are literally drying up our livelihoods worldwide. In addition, floods and heavy rainfall events are becoming more frequent, leading to ever new preventive measures to enable people to preserve their living space, for example in the Alps. This requires decisive countermeasures, especially by the community of states, whereby strong shoulders can carry more than weak ones. This means that the states of the Global North must act in accordance with their "ecological debt" (LS 51).

In Germany, this year's motto for Creation Time is "That you may have life in abundance" (John 10:10), with which Christians in the Association of Christian Churches (ACK) are jointly committed. It is certain that we will experience ever faster and more violent changes in nature if we do not take a radically different path in our relationship with creation as quickly as possible. In Christianity, "life in abundance" is essentially linked to an inner conversion. In our responsibility before God, we must strive for the good of all creation and change our lifestyle. Without an intact creation, neither economic profit nor technical progress are of any use to us. Then we cannot have "life in abundance" and justice and peace dry up like water.

It is our responsibility as children of God to stop the warming of the climate and the destruction of nature. To this end, we must commit ourselves as individuals and as a whole human family. I therefore expressly support the call for a Global Climate Strike on September 15, 2023. The preservation of creation requires dialogue and joint commitment. The more people speak out publicly and peacefully for the protection of climate, environment and biodiversity, the sooner we can express concern for creation to politics, business and society. It is good if we remind within the church and in the whole society and take into account the responsibility of all people.


In 2015, Pope Francis established September 1 as the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation for the Catholic Church. In choosing this date, the pope took up an Orthodox tradition, thus placing the World Day of Prayer in an ecumenical context from the very beginning. As early as 1989, the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople Dimitrios invited "the whole Orthodox and Christian world" to pray on September 1 "to the Creator of the world: with prayers of thanksgiving for the great gift of the created world and with supplications for its protection and for its redemption."


P. O'Brien said…
During a climate strike, do you sit outside and do nothing? And maybe breathw only half as much? Good grief, these bishops are idiots.