‘Heal the brokenness’ – a young Catholic on the future of our planet

Leah Ng is a cradle Catholic born and raised in Singapore. She is currently doing her undergraduate studies in Religion and Theology at the University of Oxford.

I’ve been extremely blessed and privileged in my life to be greatly charmed by the beauty, imperfect perfection and majesty of nature. I would watch Blue Planet with my siblings when we were younger, marvelling at the strange creatures and their habitats.

While the intricacies of how each plant and animal relate to each other have remained a happy mystery to me, the significance of these connections and of the interdependence in ecosystems were of interest to me in my post-Secondary studies in Geography.

While my experience of climate change has been of intense heat and unexpected weather patterns, I know that there are many who suffer far worse consequences – losing their homes and their lives.

Often the looming threat of this crisis that seems to be spiralling beyond the control of any individual, corporation or even country leaves me with a deep feeling of helplessness and hopelessness. Yet I know that to resign myself to what seems inevitable is choosing to let my fear turn into a reality. 

Remember our brothers and sisters in need and choose to forgo our own comfort for their good.

My vision for the future is of a world in which we, individuals, corporations and countries, cooperate with each other and with our Creator to re-shape, renew and heal the brokenness we face.

In an ideal world, free of sin, we could experience total harmony and healing. A more realistic perspective, for a foreseeable future, would be a transformation of heart and of mind of those in power.

For those wielding positions of power in governments to let themselves be humbled in ambitions for national progress for the sake of humanity’s survival.

For those wielding power in corporations to let themselves be moved by compassion for the cry of the earth and the poor and to forgo the model of economic growth for the model of love for one’s neighbour.

For each of us wielding power in our free will, that we may remember our brothers and sisters in need and choose to forgo our own comfort for their good.

In Laudate Deum, Pope Francis talks of “large processes of transformation rising from deep within society”. I cling to the hope that we can and will bring about these processes of transformation. My vision for the future is one which is pinned onto the goodness of God, that He who has created this world and each of us in it will lead us in our attempts to repair the damage we’ve done.

Maybe a better way of framing my hope for the future is that we will begin to learn to let go of the control we cling to and trust that in surrendering this, the Lord will do unimaginable wonders through us and for us.

This is not a future that is free of hard work on our part, but one which is directed by God and embodied in our actions of love and self-sacrifice. My vision for the future is one which is built upon love for God and for each other and filled with hope that we may be able to turn to Him in this time of crisis and entrust each decision in His hands.

Leah’s post is part of a series for our Justice at COP28 campaign, where a series of contributors will look at the impact of climate change on our world. Visit our campaign page to sign-up for regular updates and discover a host of resources.

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