Every year from 1st of September to 4th October, Christians mark what has come to be known as the Season of Creation (SOC) – It is the time that is set aside for all people of goodwill to reflect on their relationship with all the created things in this common home of ours. The theme for this year is Jubilee for the Earth and it coincides with quinquennium celebration of the Laudato Si, and Fiftieth anniversary of the Earth day.
As Salesians, we continue to be challenged by the statement that was made by Pope Francis in his encyclical Laudato Si, where he stated that “young people demand change. They wonder how anyone can claim to be building a better future without thinking of the environmental crisis and the sufferings of the excluded. It is quite logical that we should not pretend to be preparing the young for a future that we continue to disfigure even in front of their eyes.
Our Rector Major has as part of the congregation six year plan directed that as educators and pastors we cannot be indifferent to this reality. We are all called to do something. Together with Pope Francis, we recognize the evidence provided by science that the acceleration of climate change coming from human activity is real. Air pollution, water pollution, improper waste disposal, loss of biodiversity and other environmental issues that have a negative impact on human life are increasing. Unsustainable production and consumption are pushing our world and its ecosystems beyond their limits, undermining their ability to provide resources and actions vital to life, development and regeneration.
We at Don Bosco Tech have taken the lead through a project titled Green TVET where we are promoting the use of renewable energy, the management of waste, the management of Water resources as well as the promotion of the green campus with a special focus on greening the curriculum and the human resource.
We invite all our friends and associates to pause for a while during this period of SOC and reflect on what as individuals and as groups they have done that continue to make the world inhabitable either by acts of commission or by omission. Secondly take a resolution to do something that the future generations will appreciate more. if you plant more trees today, the future generations will have cleaner air that we do, if you reduce industrial waste and sending affluent to the rivers and oceans, the water quality will be higher that it is today and the marine life will be more vibrant that it is today, still if you start practicing sustainable consumption, the future generations will find plenty of resources that they will need for their livelihood.
DBTA reaffirms her commitment to make sure that every Province and Vice Province in Africa will make our schools, education centers, oratories, and parishes, educational models of care for the environment and for nature. As far as possible, we shall expand the network of Salesian institutions to be included in the Don Bosco Green Alliance, fostering the participation of the young in global campaigns on behalf of the sustainable environment and ecological causes for the care of creation and human life. Lastly we shall undertake to achieve 100% transition to renewable energy for all TVET Centers in Africa before 2032.
The time to act is now, let us allow ourselves to enter into the arena of ecological conversion that we may live as ecological citizens. May the simplicity of St. Francis of Assisi and his love for all creatures continue to inspire us in our journey towards ecological citizenship where we will feel and experience how interconnected we are with each creature whether living or nonliving. We need the environment to live healthier, happier and holier.