Chaplain's Chat Term 3 Week 9

Wednesday, 13 Sept 2023

Hi everyone, Rev Lisa here, writing my very first ‘Chaplain’s Chat’. Thank you so much to everybody who has welcomed me so warmly to BDC. What a blessing for me to be joining such a friendly and vibrant community! It’s also a big community, so I have definitely not had a chance to meet everyone yet. Whether we have met or not, though, please know that my door (and inbox) are open to you, if you ever want to have a chat.

In our chapel services at the moment we are joining people of faith around the world in celebrating the Season of Creation. The theme for this year is ‘Let Peace and Justice Flow’. Often when we think of peace and justice, we have human beings at the front of our minds.

How do we share power, resources, land, and wealth? How do we resolve conflict when someone thinks ‘That’s not fair!’? In our care for creation, there are many things that are not fair. Some people have great power to impact the environment - either positively or negatively - while others have very little. Often, those with the least power are also those with the least resources to withstand environmental crises. The poor go hungry as their crops fail and their land becomes unliveable – while the rich buy all they need from the supermarket. Small island nations are under threat from rising sea levels, while larger nations continue contributing to climate change.

On a deeper level, though, the Season of Creation encourages us to consider what justice and peace would look like if we extend them beyond human beings. How can we offer justice to threatened species like koalas and pygmy possums, or make peace with the forests, sand dunes, and waterways of the land we live on?

The Season of Creation finishes each year on October 4th, the date we remember St Francis of Assisi. St Francis is remembered for his sense of fellowship with all of God’s creation – other human beings, including the most poor and vulnerable, but also the plants and animals he regarded as brothers and sisters. I hope that a sense of fellowship will also flow through our college as we seek to do justice and bring peace in the world.

Blessings to you all,
Rev Lisa Williamson