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Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation: message from the Italian Bishops’ Conference (CEI), “learning to look at biodiversity to look after it”

“Learning to look at biodiversity to look after it”: this is one of the calls made in the encyclical Laudato si’ and relayed by the Italian Bishops’ Conference (CEI) for the National Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, that the Italian Church will celebrate on September 1st. In addition to Pope Francis’s encyclical, the Message – written by two of CEI’s Episcopal Commissions: the Commission for social problems and work, justice and peace, and the Episcopal Commission for ecumenism and dialogue – refers to the Synod that next October will focus on the Amazonian region, which is “a lung of the planet and one of the places that hosts the greatest biodiversity in the world”. Therefore, this year, for the Italian Church, the National Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation is “an opportunity to learn about and understand that fragile, precious world of biodiversity that our land is so full of, as well”. The Italian regions “host a wide variety of aquatic and terrestrial living organisms and species, creating ecosystems that spread from the magnificent woods on the Alps – Europe’s highest mountains – to the heat of the Mediterranean”. There is, at the centre of biodiversity, the message says, “a contemplative glance at some of the key areas of the planet, from the Congo basin to the coral reefs through to the Amazonian forest – homes to a luxuriant, varied life, a key feature of the Earth’s ecosystem”.  “Letting ourselves be involved in such glance to contemplate ourselves – grateful, impressed and blessing, like Francis of Assisi – the creatures of the Earth, in particular the world of life, so varied and luxuriant”, the Italian Bishops’ Conference urged.

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