In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
… God saw all that he had made, and it was very good (Genesis 1: 1, 31).
Totally dependent on Earth, humans are called to live sustainably so that future generations may enjoy the plenitude of God’s creation. Living sustainably is rooted in CSA’s history and mission. Father Caspar Rehrl, earliest founder of the Congregation, once said “Oh, how I wish that the Sisters of St. Agnes might someday live on this beautiful land watered by springs.” That land eventually became CSA’s St. Joseph Springs Farm and is the current location of our Motherhouse.
For more than 160 years the Sisters tended this land by:
• Caring for the soil through farming and gardening
• Protecting the woodlands
• Preserving the integrity of springs and streams
• Maintaining open prairies to preserve native wildflowers, plants and grasses
• Installing solar panels which generate clean energy
In addition, members have reduced, reused and recycled in order to better steward the resources of Earth. Various spiritual, social, and educational expressions among the members reflect their love and care for Earth and for the most vulnerable.
Caring for creation is an urgent responsibility, Pope Francis wrote in Laudato Si’ (2015). In response, the Sisters of St. Agnes have intensified their commitment to sustainability by adopting a corporate stance to Care for Earth (2016).
Corporate Stance on Care of the Earth
In light of the growing impact of climate change on the global community, we, the Congregation of Sisters of St. Agnes, honoring our interdependence with all of God's creation and in a spirit of nonviolence, personally and communally renew and recommit to care for Earth, home of all living creatures.
We commit to actions that:
- Flow from a spirituality of integral ecology (Laudato Si’ – Chapter 4) that expresses interconnections among environmental, economic, scientific, social and cultural systems,
- Respect Earth and the interdependence of all life,
- Consume less of Earth’s nonrenewable resources through the six R’s: refuse, reduce, reuse, recycle, repurpose, and restore,
- Educate ourselves and others about the equitable development of renewable, cleaner energy sources in order to
- mitigate the impact of climate change and
- enable the most vulnerable to adapt to climate change
- Promote a low-carbon economy especially in Nicaragua and the USA where we serve,
- Cooperate with governmental and non-governmental organizations that are committed to care for Earth.
Developed by the Justice Peace and Integrity of Creation Committee
Adopted by the Congregation May 31, 2016
Affirmed by the CSA USA Associate Community November 30, 2020