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In the parable Jesus tells today tenants, given the task of caring for a vineyard while the owner is away, mistreat and kill a succession of servants sent to collect the produce, before finally killing the vineyard owner’s son.
We too have been entrusted with land to care for. As the great encyclical letter Laudato Si’ reminds us, the world belongs to God and we have been given the responsibility of “caring (for), protecting, overseeing and preserving” it (Laudato Si’, 67).
We, the tenants on God’s earth, have too often treated the gift as our possession to do with as we please and silenced the voices calling us to account for our stewardship.
Now, it is the most vulnerable communities who are paying the heaviest price as the climate changes.
As smallholder Rupali in southern Bangladesh says: “In developed countries, they have too many factories and cars on their roads, but the impacts are felt in countries like Bangladesh. But here, locally, we can also try together to change things, so we can leave a beautiful village or a beautiful world for them.”
This Lent, let’s resolve to be good tenants of the vineyard in our care, doing all we can to respond to the climate crisis, to prevent further damage to our environment and restore creation for the common good.
God of all,
help us to cherish the gift of creation.
May we be just and generous stewards
of all the gifts you have given us.
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