Why care for our common home? Musician Fr Rob Galea, a Maltese priest living in Australia, shares a few words about Pope Francis’ letter “On Care For Our Common Home” and its relevance in today’s scenario dominated by Covid-19.
The heart of a Pope who loves the heart of a loving God
“When I first read this letter, I thought ‘oh my goodness! this is another letter about the environment, what we need to do, why don’t we focus on the Church, on things that matter.
But as I read this letter and reflected on it I just understood the heart of a Pope who loves the heart of a loving God! You see, God has given us this planet, not because of anything else but just the fact he loves us. He wants us to be people who are happy and full of life. But we have taken this mansion, this planet, and we have abused it, we have destroyed it. In that we have also destroyed the beauty of it that is a reflection of who God is.
The Church has a history of advocating for beauty
The Church has a history of looking after beauty, the Sistine Chapel, all these beautiful works of art and ornaments we have in the Church. She is the biggest advocate for beauty and we love to promote beauty. So it makes sense for me that the Church is the loud voice here advocating for this beauty which is our planet. It’s not only the beauty of this planet, but it is also who it is affecting, that is more important than the rest of creation, that is affecting you and me, but ultimately it is also affecting the poorest of the poor.
So even though we might destroy things and think it doesn’t affect us, actually it does. Everything you do affects me, just as much as anything done in Brazil affects me here, in Australia, and affect you in Malta. The thing is, we impact one another, that is the nature of humanity, the nature of living on a shared planet. But we can do something about it, we can restore this beauty if we put our heads together to make something beautiful, even out of something so desperate.
“On Care For Our Common home” and Covid-19
We are in a place of a pandemic, a place of isolation, and the planet has had a chance to breathe. Let’s take this opportunity now, a time where we have isolated ourselves and used less fossil fuels, used less resources, travelled less. Let’s try to continue this streak to look after this planet.
We don’t do it because we love the planet only, but because we love God, who has given us this planet. We love God who is Beauty and in this planet we see the beauty of God. So let us make a difference, get our heads together, and look after what God has given us just to give glory to God. In doing so, we’re worshipping and honouring the God of Beauty, the God who loves us and the God who wants to give us life and beauty to the full.”