Wednesday, May 18, 2022

“I think I shall never see…” wrote Joyce Kilmer, the World War I poet who died much too young on the fields in France.  Most of us can complete at least the first sentence of that poem, now usually dismissed as overly sentimental, even maudlin. What most of us will never see, however, are the many birds, large and small, that inhabit our forests and plains, but which still are parts of God’s creation.


On Monday, Federal Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley issued a ruling stating the Fish & Wildlife Service had not considered the full environmental impact of delisting the Sage Grouse from the Endangered Species List as fossil fuel and mining companies wanted. Most of us will only see a Sage Grouse on the internet but like trees and other birds, it is a part of God’s creation not to be destroyed.


Many videos of this bird that lives in the Eastern Sierras shows it as dancing, or hopping up and down while making sounds, part of its courtship ritual.  The females of the species seem singularly unimpressed.  One could draw some lessons from this.


Prayer for the Day


Endless is the variety of your creation, O God,
   Even among those creatures we shall never see;
Species across this earth look to us for protection, O Lord,
   And we know we must answer their plight.
Hold us fast to your command to care for the earth,
   Not to despoil it in our drives of greed.
In the name of the One who tells us to consider the lilies,
   Even Christ Jesus our Lord, Amen.


Thoughts for the Day


By simply dismissing the relevant data, rather than ‘disagreeing with or discrediting’ it, the Service ignored the best available data.
      - Jacqueline Scott Corley, U.S. District Judge, from the 31-page decision


These rare dancing birds have a chance at survival thanks to this court decision.
       - Ileene Anderson, Center for Biological Diversity, a plaintiff in the case


Ask the animals, and they will teach you; the birds of the air and they will tell you;
   Ask the plants of the earth, and they will teach you, the fish of the sea declares so.
Who among all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this?
   That in God’s hand is the life of every living thing, the breath of every human being.
    Job 12: 7-10