Other continents often admire our African continent because of the natural resources we have been blessed with, like different types of trees, rivers, lakes, mineral and our unique animals. But it is sad to note that many a times, we have failed to take care of these gifts due to our increasing demand of our lifestyle just as Pope Francis has written in Laudato Si: On Care For Our Common Home that “the economy accepts every advance in technology with a view to profit, without concern for its potentially negative impact on human beings.”
We exploit our natural resources due to our selfish desire at the cost of our lives. We do things with the view of what it will bring for us today and not what it will bring tomorrow. Most of our land has become bare due to the cutting down of trees in our forests hence causing wild animals to move into our communities. This is caused by the great desire to develop our big cities, while ignoring the poor who living on the outskirts of town.
We have forgotten the amount of profit a live animal brings into the country hence we kill them. We have disturbed the natural way of our climate pattern yet we still complain about the impacts of climate change that keep intensifying and increasing in frequency every year.
I come from a country (Zambia) where agriculture and charcoal burning are believed to be the only source of income for a person living in the rural. But with the climate patterns that are not predictable it is now impossible to plant maize by November.
On the other hand, thousands of trees are being cut down every day and being sold to those in urban areas as charcoal yet no one thinks of planting any trees. All Christian communities have an important role to play in the ecological education in caring for our environment.
Local individuals and groups can make a real difference. They are able to instill a greater sense of responsibility, a strong sense of community, a readiness to protect others, a spirit of creativity and a deep love for the land.
As young people, let us take care of our common home because our children will inherit this one day. As Pope Francis says “Everything is connected. Concern for the environment thus needs to be joined to a sincere love for our fellow human beings and an unwavering commitment to resolving the problems of society”.
Core Team Member, CYNESA Zambia.