by Liz Kerwin, CSJ.

Recently I was sent an article supporting the small percentage of scientists who say that human behavior is not responsible for global warming because these changes have always been happening throughout earth’s history. It also implied that all the concern among environmentalists and legislators is about power and money. I was appalled and angry because the person knows that I have been teaching and trying to live ecological and evolutionary principles for the past fifty years.

Upon reflection I realized that it is not so important which scientists one sides with. What is obvious to all of us is that our water, air and soil are becoming significantly polluted because of human behavior and this is causing health problems such as cancer, asthma, allergies and early deaths.

In the book of Genesis we are told that all of creation comes from the hand of God and that humans are to tend and care for it. We are made of the same stuff, all connected and dependent on all of it. Is it not our moral obligation to care for all of creation and to hand it on to future generations in healthy good condition?

Our use of water and what we put into it, our food production and what we eat, our travel and energy use are all really spiritual practices with moral implications. We all have a degree of consciousness about these things. The question as we come up to the first anniversary of Pope Francis’ “Laudato Si” on care for creation might be “What more can I do?” or “What more am I being asked to do?”

For the past two years I have worked with a group of Sisters of St. Joseph from across the country to prepare materials for reflection and action. Click here for the reflection guide at

Liz is a spiritual director at Loyola. Read her bio here.