While Christians worldwide meditate upon the crucifixion of their savior this Good Friday, the Episcopal Church has suggested that the faithful also reflect upon whether they’re doing their part to reduce C02 emissions.
Two of the world’s holiest religious holidays are set to fall on April 22 this year — Good Friday for Christians and Earth Day for environmentalists — and some religious leaders are preparing their flocks to celebrate both.
The Episcopal Church’s office of Economic and Environmental Affairs released a statement urging followers to stay mindful of global warming, recycling and reducing carbon dioxide emissions while celebrating the ancient Christian holiday in 2011.
“This year Earth Day falls within Holy Week, specifically on Good Friday, a profound coincidence,” said Mike Schut, a church spokesman. “To fully honor Earth Day, we need to reclaim the theology that knows Earth is ‘very good,’ is holy. When we fully recognize that, our actions just may begin to create a more sustainable, compassionate economy and way of life.”
Christians observe Good Friday, the day reserved to remember the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, on the Friday before Easter, which is not celebrated on a fixed date. First observed on April 22, 1970, Earth Day is celebrated to raise awareness about efforts to protect the environment.
Schut continued: “On Good Friday, the day we mark the crucifixion of Christ, God in the flesh, might we suggest that when Earth is degraded, when species go extinct, that another part of God’s body experiences yet another sort of crucifixion — that another way of seeing and experiencing God is diminished?”
The church set up a website for the celebration of Earth Day, complete with links to resources on how to best get involved on the extra special day.