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Ecology Reflections from Fr. John Surette, SJ

A reflection by Fr. John Surette, SJ

Who is my neighbor? With whom do I have an interconnection? With who am I in communion?

The modern sciences of cosmology and ecology have given us some new insights into who we answer these questions.

The law of communion in God’s Universe finds its most elementary expression of communion in the law of gravity whereby every physical thing in the Universe attracts and is attracted to every other physical thing. It just happens. It is one way in which the Universe works.

Everything in nature is in relationship. Nothing stands alone. The most fictitious identity in all creation is that of the solitary individual or the isolated atom. We cannot stand apart and be authentically ourselves.

Life on Earth has been using the same water over and over again. The dinosaurs drank it. Abraham and Sarah drank it as did Moses and Miriam. You and I were baptized with it, and we presently drink it.

As an embryo in your mother’s womb, you were approximately 98% water. As an old person you will be approximately 65% water. Water is the gift of life.
Consider all of those people over the centuries who have consumed the same water that you and I drink and have received the gift of life. It is the same water and the same gift of life.

Can you sense how you are interconnected with them in and through the water and how all of them are in communion with you in and through the water? All those molecules of water are neighbors we are called to love.

And yet we continue to live our lives in the illusion that there is no sharing, no interconnections, no communion. To be is to be in communion or not to be at all. Communion is the secret law of life and of God’s Universe. To think otherwise or to live otherwise is to be living a lie.

Drinking water is a communion event. Breathing air is a communion event. Eating food is a communion event. Speaking a language is a communion event. Establishing a relationship is a communion event. Remembering is the communion of the past and the present.

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