Everything on earth is filled with sacred presence

The first presentation in the 2019 Enrichment Series at Mount St. Benedict Monastery drew a group of people interested in hearing about “Climate Crisis and Humility: Benedict’s teaching as a guide.”

In her presentation, Sister Anne McCarthy, coordinator of Benedictines for Peace and staff member at Benetvision and Monasteries of the Heart, presented a fresh look at St. Benedict's 12 steps of humility as a foundation for deep transformation of consciousness and action.

After briefly touching on the climate crisis and its causes and pointing out that humans are actually creating the problem by uninformed choices and lack of awareness and understanding, Sister Anne was clear: “Yes, humans are creating the problem but we can fix it. It will be difficult but it is possible.”

Using the Rule of Benedict, Chapter 7 on Humility, Sister Anne outlined how Benedict’s steps of humility can lay the foundation for the personal transformation and spiritual growth that will allow individuals and groups to forge a new relationship with a planet in crisis. "By recognizing God as the ground of all being, knowing ourselves as a sacred part of creation, and acknowledging our role as co-creators, we will be more able to listen to the cry of the earth, learn from the earth, and be the voice for the earth through choice and advocacy. “If we can fall in love with all of creation we will care for it with passion,” said Sister Anne. “We must transform our consciousness to believe and act on love for creation, truly believing that everything on earth is filled with sacred presence.”

In expressing her gratitude to Sister Anne, Sister Stephanie Schmidt, Director of Ongoing Monastic Formation said: “You were able to help us understand the trouble we are in as regards the climate change reality but you did it while instilling hope that we can make a difference—that we have the power to change and make change. By sharing your passion with us we go away impassioned about our care and reverence for the earth, and our planet.”