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Care for creation is an ancient Catholic concern that has taken on renewed urgency in recent decades. Catholics are examining their faith-related responsibility to protect the environment. Earth Day and the legacy of St. Francis of Assisi share the goal of protecting the environment and all of God’s creation.

Seasonal Features
Earth Day
See all of our Earth Day e-cards at CatholicGreetings.org

Explore the Ecology and Faith News area

Catholics are examining their faith-related responsibility to protect the environment and the connection between ecology and other issues, including food security, climate change, peace and justice, and consumption and production.

Why Catholics Care for Creation
In this issue of Catholic Update, Joan Brown, O.S.F., looks at how the Church has understood creation through the centuries. While exploring such issues as global warming, she also explains how the Spiritual and Corporal Works of Mercy can serve as a guide for the care of creation.

Care for Creation: A Franciscan Spirituality of the Earth
A book from St. Anthony Messenger Press!

Was Jesus a Tree Hugger?
This issue of Every Day Catholic focuses on how we can cultivate and care for the earth. Easy words in theory and wholly holy, but being good stewards of creation isn’t as easy as it sounds.

Francis, Faith and Ecology
The October 2007 issue of St. Anthony Messenger explored the many connections between Franciscan spirituality and our stewardship of the earth, including:

St. Francis of Assisi: Why He's the Patron of Ecology
The saint who composed the ‘Canticle of the Creatures,’ preached to the birds and prayed in the woods can teach us about caring for creation.

Species Preservation Matters
As the Poor Man of Assisi appreciated the biodiversity that God built into creation, humankind today needs to reclaim St. Francis' kinship ethic.

The ‘Our Father’: Our Environmental Teacher
This prayer can be a guide to saving the God-given planet.

The Tragedy of Mountaintop Removal
An Appalachian Catholic committee works with interfaith leaders to expose the full cost of coal-generated electricity.

Going Green: For the Sake of God's Creation
Dioceses, parishes and individuals are finding new ways of fulfilling the moral responsibilities toward creation.

Learn More About the Patron of Ecology
St. Francis of Assisi, lover of all creation, champion of justice, patron saint of animals and the environment, founded the Franciscan order.
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Jeanne Jugan: 
		<p>Born in northern France during the French Revolution—a time when congregations of women and men religious were being suppressed by the national government, Jeanne would eventually be highly praised in the French academy for her community's compassionate care of elderly poor people.</p>
		<p>When Jeanne was three and a half years old, her father, a fisherman, was lost at sea. Her widowed mother was hard pressed to raise her eight children (four died young) alone. At the age of 15 or 16, Jeanne became a kitchen maid for a family that not only cared for its own members, but also served poor, elderly people nearby. Ten years later, Jeanne became a nurse at the hospital in Le Rosais. Soon thereafter she joined a third order group founded by St. John Eudes (August 19).</p>
		<p>After six years she became a servant and friend of a woman she met through the third order. They prayed, visited the poor and taught catechism to children. After her friend's death, Jeanne and two other women continued a similar life in the city of Saint-Sevran. In 1839, they brought in their first permanent guest. They began an association, received more members and more guests. Mother Marie of the Cross, as Jeanne was now known, founded six more houses for the elderly by the end of 1849, all staffed by members of her association—the Little Sisters of the Poor. By 1853 the association numbered 500 and had houses as far away as England.</p>
		<p>Abbé Le Pailleur, a chaplain, had prevented Jeanne's reelection as superior in 1843; nine year later, he had her assigned to duties within the congregation, but would not allow her to be recognized as its founder. He was removed from office by the Holy See in 1890. </p>
		<p>By the time Pope Leo XIII gave her final approval to the community's constitutions in 1879, there were 2,400 Little Sisters of the Poor. Jeanne died later that same year, on August 30. Her cause was introduced in Rome in 1970, and she was beatified in 1982 and canonized in 2009. </p>
		<p> </p>
American Catholic Blog The joy of the Lord is our strength. Therefore, each of us will accept a life of poverty in cheerful trust. We will offer cheerful obedience from our inward joy. We will minister to Christ in the distressing disguise of the poor with cheerful devotion. If our work is done with joy, we will have no reason to be unhappy.

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