Good Friday

When Tree Huggers Meet Jesus Freaks

The Confluence of Holy Week + Earth Week 

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This is the week when Jesus Christ and Mother Earth collide.

For billions of Christians, it’s Holy Week, honoring the final few days of Jesus’ earthly life and ministry.

For countless environmentalists, it’s the annual campaign for promoting awareness and appreciation of the natural environment.

Both groups will commemorate sacred milestones on Friday, April 22: Good Friday and Earth Day. In fact, it’s the first time ever that these two “holidays” are occurring simultaneously.

Some might find it sacrilegious or ludicrous to compare a 2,000+-year tribute to the crucifixion of a Savior with a 40-year-old anniversary of a bunch of green fanatics.

Yet. as someone who aligns with both groups, I find the two quite complementary.

My faith inspires my desire to be a responsible steward of the Earth, and vice versa. It’s my love for God that compels me to honor His creation. Conversely, it’s when I savor the beauty and majesty of the Earth that I’m naturally drawn back to the source and ultimate sustainer of our world.

Strip away the politics and hyperbole (on both sides), and you’re left with two movements that really shouldn’t be in conflict.

And increasingly, that seems to be the case. The Green Christian movement is a growing grassroots network of faith-based environmentalists. They, too, believe their commitment to ecological principles and practices is an authentic act of worship to God.

It’s my prayer that we “Jesus Freaks” and “Tree Huggers” continue to lower our walls and open our minds and hearts to one shared reality:  we are standing on holy ground. 

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The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and to take care of it.
     –  Genesis 2:15
 

I would be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge that this week also marks Passover, which commemorates the Exodus of the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt. Although I don’t practice Judaism, it’s an important part of my heritage, as my dad’s family is Jewish. 

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Learn more about the Green Christian Network.

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