"Stewardship Has Never Been More Important"

January 22, 2019

On October 10, 2018, Elder Steven E. Snow of the Seventy participated in a panel discussion at an environmental stewardship symposium at Utah State University. He referred to scripture and past prophets who teach us our responsibility to care for the earth. You can access his words through this Mormon Newsroom release.

There are so many powerful passages. We want to highlight of few of them: 

"...God expects every one of His sons and daughters to act as good stewards of the land He created. It causes me much grief when I look outside my window and see a hazy inversion or when I hear consistent reports of Utah’s poor air quality. I am concerned for the families affected by wildfires and for the schoolchildren forced to stay indoors because of smoky skies. Algal blooms are breaking out in Utah’s lakes. We are experiencing unusually dry seasons and record-breaking warm winters."

"Climate change is real, and it’s our responsibility as stewards to do what we can to limit the damage done to God’s creation."

Elder Snow quoting President Dallin H. Oaks: "These are challenging times, filled with big worries: wars and rumors of wars, possible epidemics of infectious diseases, droughts, floods, and global warming. Seacoast cities are concerned with the rising level of the ocean, which will bring ocean tides to their doorsteps or over their thresholds. Global warming is also affecting agriculture and wildlife." 

Quoting President Spencer W. Kimball: "Too often we are a “throw-away people,” Some live lavishly in the moment without a thought for the future. Others believe that because “the earth will [one day] be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory” that we have free license to be wasteful. But that’s not how it works. God made us stewards over His creations and, as such, He expects accountability. believe it is unbecoming of a Latter-day Saint to willfully deface and defile the earth."

Quoting President Ezra Taft Benson: “Stewardship in the Church is a very important matter. The Lord has mentioned it in the revelations. We are stewards over these earthly blessings which the Lord has provided, those of us who have this soil and this water. We have no moral latitude, it seems to me. In fact, we are morally obligated to turn this land over to those who succeed us—not drained of its fertility but improved in quality, in productivity, and in usefulness for future generations.”

"...failure to care for the land on which we live means turning our backs on the heritage laid down carefully and at such great cost by our forefathers—and will leave us immeasurably poorer."

We also love Elder Snow's recommendations on ways we can be better stewards: 

  • Check with your local utility company, local community groups, or the internet to find suggestions to conserve energy.
  • Support community recycling programs.
  • Consider starting a community garden.
  • Support local civic groups that promote stewardship and conservation.
  • Be an involved citizen in government.
  • Use the resources of the earth sparingly and reverently.
  • Adopt lifestyles and personal habits that respect the Creation.
  • As you can, fix up and keep clean the places where you live, work, recreate, and worship.
  • Make your own living space more beautiful and inspirational.
  • Contemplate the ways that nature bears testimony of God and the harmony between the laws and patterns of nature and the gospel of Jesus Christ.

We encourage you to share this Mormon Newroom link to your friends and family. As members of the Church, we can have a significant influence on the world for good. And we should.