With the season of Lent approaching, parishes and schools across Iowa are invited to journey towards a greater understanding of our state’s ecological and environmental issues, with the help of a new reflection book titled Caring for our Common Home: A Lenten Reflection for Iowans. Inspired by Pope Francis’s ecological encyclical Laudato Si’, this new work takes a uniquely Iowa perspective in exploring the science of the world around us, while contemplating God in the web of creation.
Caring for our Common Home: A Lenten Reflection for Iowans delves into the science, reflects on the encyclical letter Laudato Si’ (Praise Be to You), and explores small and large ways to grow in faith and act for the goodness of our common home. Each day of the Lenten journey sheds light on a different ecological concept, ranging from water and wetlands to agriculture, soil, biodiversity, and climate change.
Bishop Richard E. Pates of the Diocese of Des Moines, writes, “This resource, Caring for our Common Home: A Lenten Reflection for Iowans, is a way to re-imagine our place in the created order and put us in touch with Iowa’s bounty and the world’s needs. By reflecting on the connections between land and water, cities and farms, wildlife and humankind, the resource draws upon both lessons from science and teachings from our faith, especially from Pope Francis’s ecological encyclical, Laudato Si’.”
Caring for our Common Home: A Lenten Reflection for Iowans was produced collaboratively by Jacqueline Comito and Ann Staudt, with assistance from Jamie Benning, Tom Chapman with the Iowa Catholic Conference, and Susie Tierney with the Center for Social Ministry. Dr. Comito is an anthropologist and director of the Iowa Learning Farms and Water Rocks! programs at Iowa State University. Staudt, an environmental engineer, and Benning, an agronomist, both collaborate with Comito at Iowa State University.
This new Lenten booklet is now available for statewide distribution. The pocket-sized booklet can be utilized as an individual Lenten journey or as part of a small group study during the season of Lent.
To obtain printed copies of Caring for our Common Home: A Lenten Reflection for Iowans for your parish or school, contact the Iowa Catholic Conference with your postal address at [email protected] or 515.243.6256. The booklets cost $4.75. Orders for Lent 2017 must be submitted by noon on February 10 to ensure printing and delivery in time for Ash Wednesday.
Copies of the accompanying DVD series, A Culture of Conservation, are available free of charge upon request (one per parish or school, please). To request the DVD set, contact Iowa Learning Farms at 515.294.4878.