Planned Activities to Celebrate Annual Month-long “Season of Creation” Event in Africa

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Planned Activities to Celebrate Annual Month-long “Season of Creation” Event in Africa

 

By Magdalene Kahiu

NAIROBI , 31 August, 2020 / 11:12 PM (ACI Africa).-

As Catholics across the globe plan to join other Christians to be part of the month-long annual event dubbed Season of Creation, an official of the Global Catholic Climate Movement in Africa (GCCM Africa), one of the organizations participating in the event, has outlined some of the planned activities to mark the ecumenical initiative in Africa.
Scheduled to begin 1 September, the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, and conclude 4 October, the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi, the patron of animals and the environment, this year’s event has been organized under the theme, “Jubilee for the Earth: New Rhythms, New Hope.”
“On 1st September, we will have an outdoor Mass called the Laudato Si’ Mass. We’ll also be launching a Laudato Si’ Garden in St. Jude Friary, Nairobi” the Programs Manager of GCCM Africa, Fr. Benedict Ayodi told ACI Africa Monday, August 31.
Linking the “Laudato Si’ Garden in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi with the theme of the event, Fr. Benedict described the venue of the 1 September Mass as “a symbolic act that encourages us to let the environment to rest as we celebrate the Jubilee.”
The rooftop garden that will have flowers, fruits and other plants will be, the Kenyan Cleric said, “a place where birds can come drink water; where people can relax and view the environment.”
The garden “will also have a place where you can read the scripture and meditate,” he said.
On the same day, September 1, Christians across Africa are expected to join in the worldwide prayer that will be initiated in Italy to start off the season, Fr. Benedict told ACI Africa.
On September 10, a webinar session on investing in green energy  rather than in pipelines such as the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) has been scheduled.
On September 12, GCCM Africa will lead a tree planting initiative aimed at restoring the Kakamega Forest, Fr. Benedict told ACI Africa, adding that toward the end of the month, on September 28, animals will be blessed at Nairobi’s St. Mary’s School.
“I hope this season will steer up our Brothers and Sisters in Africa to pray and go back to their spirituality, the ecological conversion, and be closer to God, others and the environment by not exploiting it but using the environment for our upkeep and caring for it and letting what we have exploited to recover,” Fr. Benedict said during the August 31 interview.
The period, during which Christians across the world use to renew their interaction with God the creator and His creation, is important for the people of God in Africa “given the issues that we are currently dealing with,” he said.
He highlighted some of the challenges the people of God on the continent are experiencing saying, “We have the COVID-19 pandemic, projects like the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) and the conflict between Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan on the sharing of the Nile.”
Fr. Benedict described the coronavirus as “a blessing in disguise” and added, “The COVID crisis has disrupted the pattern of our usual consumption. It forced us to rest and also presents us with a unique chance to change course towards a just transition.”
“After resting from all that consumption and exploitation of the environment, we have a chance to change course towards what we call the just transition,” the member of the Order of Franciscans Minor, Capuchin (OFM Cap.) further said.
He added, “We have a unique opportunity to transform the present way that we use our resources, the way we exploit the environment and treat the environment with compassion and solidarity to build a more harmonious relationship with nature which according to Pope Francis, is our common home.”
“We are presented with a unique opportunity to look at how best we can avoid mistakes that happened in the past and also how best we can help our continent to move from conflict and war, to move from hunger, to move from extreme pollution and such issues,” Fr. Benedict, said.
On May 24, the Secretary in the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, Monsignor Bruno-Marie Duffé invited Catholics across the world to “join the ecumenical family in celebrating the​ Season of Creation.”
“This special season offers us the chance to work towards the renewal of our Earth and the precious relationships we share,” Monsignor Duffé said in his May 24 letter.

Credit:
www. aciafrica.org

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