On July 6 the Church in Australia celebrated the annual event of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Sunday.
“Many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have joyfully embraced the good news of Jesus, and become part of the community of his disciples,” the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference noted in its message published for that day.
“In our own land, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have a unique contribution to make as the wider Australian community is challenged to face up to the damage it is doing to God’s beautiful creation,” they said.
The message invited all to see God’s creation as something good and to appreciate God’s providence.
“The first Christian community saw the wider creation as destined to share with human beings, in an unimaginable way, in the salvation that comes to us through Jesus’ resurrection (Rom 8:18-25; Col 1:15-29).”
We belong, the statement continued, “to the one community of creation before God, and that in the Eucharist we praise God with this community– “All you have created rightly gives you praise” (3rd Eucharistic Prayer).
Quoting St Francis of Assisi the statement said that he “wanted to restore right relationships between God, humankind and all that exists.