Summer is more than half over, and harvest is happening around us, earlier than usual, and with our farmers facing all kinds of difficulties caused by the hot and persistently dry conditions. At harvest we will give thanks for this beautiful earth and especially its fruitfulness, mindful this year of the fragility of the environment, and the many issues arising from global warming, often as a result of our poor stewardship of this great gift.
For many this harvest it is the cost of living crisis which will be their greatest concern. Several things have combined to make this a particularly difficult time in the world economy, including the war in the Ukraine and the after effects of the pandemic. This has led to sharp rises in many basic necessities. The bounty of the earth has never been fairly shared, but rarely before have we seen so many worried about the costs of basics like fuel, food and the weekly shop. While we pray for wise leadership, and imaginative and compassionate help for the neediest here in our own country, we don't forget the many around the world for whom daily hunger and life-sapping poverty are not exceptional, but the norm. Let us pray that the harvest will be fairly shared, that we treat the world better and we give thanks for those whose work it is to keep us supplied with life's necessities, for a happier year to come.