Every Earth Day gives us an opportunity to remember that we are called to care for God’s creation, and are deeply dependent on its well-being. Today, on the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, that remains as true as ever. Indeed, in the age of COVID-19, humanity’s impact on and relationship with the natural world have never been more apparent.
Grace Cathedral has long advocated for climate justice and for protecting our environment. In recent years, we have used both art and activism to highlight our commitment to a healthier planet. In 2018, the cathedral’s Year of Truth, we hosted Sukey Bryan as our Artist in Residence. Bryan focused on telling the truth about climate change through painting and visual art.
Earlier, in 2017, Bryan had created Sky Steps to celebrate Easter and Earth Day at the cathedral. This work of art draped the Great Steps in sky and cloud, greatly impacting our visitors. Images were widely shared on social media and The Economist magazine even seized upon it to illustrate an article about faith, climate change and the upcoming Global Climate Action Summit.
Sukey’s Earth Window hung on the cathedral’s façade during the Global Climate Action Summit that took place in San Francisco in September 2018. Grace welcomed thousands of guests and ambassadors from all faiths for the opening interfaith service of the three day international conference.
While the current health crisis prevents us from gathering in person this year, the climate crisis still demands our prayers and action. So we still observe Earth Day and renew our commitment to car for creation. Today at 5 p.m., we invite you to join us in prayer and reflection at The Vine. The Rt. Rev. Dr. Marc Handley Andrus, bishop of the Diocese of California and a leading Episcopal voice for climate justice, will preach on the connection between our spiritual beliefs and creation care.
Wherever you are this Earth Day, we hope you are happy, healthy and safe.