Citizen Participation


     During the October Care for the Creation worship bulletin inserts the emphasis was on "Citizen Participation and Caring for our Creation". We would like to expand on this topic in this November newsletter article.

     The Lutheran Church over many decades has organized many important programs to serve people. The church has been active through Lutheran Social Services providing help for people in need. Lutheran hospitals were built to provide health care for people. The point is that the church has organized and taken positive action to serve people. These concepts can also be used to solve issues as it related to our environment and caring for our planet.

Worldwide there are a countless numbers of man-made environmental disasters. The recent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and more recent dam break in Hungary which dumped toxic waste into the Danube River are a couple of disasters that are very polluting and will have long lasting consequences .

      Citizens around the world have done much to stop these disasters as well as other issues, but more people need to be informed and need to get involved. Much more needs to be done to prevent and stop these environment problems from happening, especially as we populate this earth with more people each year. The population growth is putting more pressure on natural resources and increasing the danger of major mistakes like what happened in the Gulf of Mexico and Hungary.

     So what can we do to reduce environmental hazards? Citizens all over the earth need to step up to the plate and get more involved and make their voices and ideas known. People in churches of all denominations need to become involved within organizations found at the international, national, state and local levels, to not only stop large visible disasters but to reduce the more obscure small scale issues such as putting small batteries in the trash. The church can be the

community organizer for change.

     What are a few examples of the work and benefits of all of these action groups? Without these action groups or organizations the world population of whales would be nearly extinct. Agricultural management practices would not have been developed which has reduced the CO2 into atmosphere. Soil erosion would be more rampant and recycling of the many consumer products

would not be happening. This list is endless and could go on and on. The world would be a more dismal place if it would not be for the many groups helping to create attitude change and actual change on how to protect our environment.

     Having said the above, it would sound that all is well, that is not the case. With the rapid growth of technological change and with the growing world population, all of us have to step up to help out where we can. Becoming an Earth Keeper is something you do NOW.