by Grace Wilde
When you take a deep breath, do you ever think of how important that air is in this world? Are we truly thankful to God for the air that permits us to exist? Think of all those things that could never happen without the atmosphere around us. If that air was gone and/or taken over by some other toxic gas we would never survive. The sad thing is, that unless we have a true change in our hearts and in our world, this could happen. This is called air pollution. I experienced it first-hand many years ago when I visited Shanghai with my family. Even wearing a mask, breathing felt unbearable and the city advertised as fun and shiny, was barely seen, covered in a thick layer of toxic fumes. I realized there that air pollution has become a real and dangerous problem all around the world.
The violence present in our hearts, wounded by sin, is also reflected in the symptoms of sickness evident in the soil, in the water, in the air and in all forms of life. This is why the earth herself, burdened and laid waste, is among the most abandoned and maltreated of our poor; she “groans in travail” (Rom 8:22).” (Laudato Si’ 2)
Air Pollution happens when toxic gasses or liquids such as CO2, Methane, Nitrous Oxide, and Ozone are released carelessly into the atmosphere through the burning of substances such as petroleum and natural gas, which humans over the last 100 years have come to depend on. Most of this is burned through factories, transportation, and home heating and cooling. Once these toxic fumes are released into the atmosphere they may be taken anywhere by the wind.
After this three distinct things may happen. The first one is that this toxic air falls on a city in the form of smog. This often happens “when mountains or tall buildings prevent air pollution from spreading out” . This is part of the reason why we often hear of smog in countries like China who have high population density and many cities. When this toxic air is inhaled it causes many health problems. “Ambient (outdoor) air pollution accounts for an estimated 4.2 million deaths per year due to stroke, heart disease, lung cancer and chronic respiratory diseases.” (WHO, ) And even those who survive the impacts of smog end up with very weak lungs and asthma.
The next possible outcome is acid rain. Acid rain is when some of the gasses become trapped in rain clouds. When the rain clouds let go of the water droplets, they also let go of this gas which, mixed with the water, is liquid and toxic to the environment. Acid rain does not have any immediate effects but, over time direct effects can be seen. Some effects can be, less nutrient water hurting the environment in those waters. It also affects trees, “dead or dying trees are a common sight in areas affected by acid rain. Acid rain leaches aluminum from the soil. That aluminum may be harmful to plants as well as animals. Acid rain also removes minerals and nutrients from the soil that trees need to grow.” (EPA, ) Humans are not affected directly but overtime, health problems tend to increase in influenced areas.
The final effect of air pollution, but probably the hardest to stop is Global Warming. “Global warming is the long-term heating of Earth’s climate system observed since the pre-industrial period (between 1850 and 1900) due to human activities, primarily fossil fuel burning, which increases heat-trapping greenhouse gas levels in Earth’s atmosphere.” (NASA, ) When toxic gasses in the atmospere do not fall back down in acid rain, they are trapped in the atmosphere preventing heat from escaping. We are literally smothering the earth, and it will be hard to turn back.
We show our respect for the Creator by our stewardship of creation. Care for the earth is not just an Earth Day slogan, it is a requirement of our faith. We are called to protect people and the planet, living our faith in relationship with all of God’s creation. This environmental challenge has fundamental moral and ethical dimensions that cannot be ignored.” (USCCB, )
That does not mean we ignore this climate crisis. We must take action at once before it is too late. This will not only make this world more beautiful and cleaner but it will prevent any more pandemics like this one!!! Did you know that our lack of care of the environment is what started and is nurturing this virus. It has been proven that this virus came from bats in the jungles in china. The virus did not hurt the bats, they did not even show symptoms. But then when we started in the US to buy more and more stuff from china. The people there were forced by us to cut down the forest where the bats were living in order to fill the demand. Then these bats which were living peacefully before, were forced to live among humans. And that is when the virus came to humans. All because of our own greed and selfishness. Unless we think more environmentally friendly we will have more and more viruses like this one. But how do we do this? Here are three simple commencing habits we can make to end this worldwide calamity:
Buy Prudently: One of air pollution's greatest contributors is the exhausts from factories. Now we cannot shut factories down. But we can limit the ways we are obtaining the objects these factories make. For example, before you buy something think, do you need this? Is there something you already have that could supplement this? If no, then you check resale stores for this product you might need. Then finally, if necessary you may go buy from Wal-Mart or stuff like that. This may seem like a lot of work, but because of this you are saving money and the environment.
Drive Prudently: Another grave contributor to air pollution and global warming is car exhausts. How do we stop that, we have to get places? Well we can walk when we are only traveling short distances. Bike if you can, for medium distances. And when the distances are really far, take public transportation or ride with someone else. This really helps this cause and gets you a daily exercise on the way to work.
Speak Out: Now this is what over time will stop air pollution for good and it is not as hard as it looks. You can buy and drive prudently, but one person doing this does not help the overall effect of air pollution. But, if we do these things and share them with everyone you meet. We will make a difference and this world will truly be a cleaner place.
Now there are many other things you can do, but just start with this and the rest will come sooner or later.
For creation awaits with eager expectation the revelation of the children of God” (Romans 8:19)
So, air pollution is a problem even if it has not affected us yet. But, just because it does not affect us doesn't mean that we do not do anything about it. For by the time we are affected by this calamity, it could be too late to turn back. So today let us speak out for our Mother Earth whose voice has been silenced. Let us take care of this gift God has truly given us, not for personal wealth, but for us to use and reuse. So as to constantly continue in this beautiful form of praise to him.
Laudato Si’ By Pope Francis
 National Geographic on Air pollution
 WHO on Air Pollution
 NASA on Global Warming
 EPA on Acid Rain
 US Conference of Catholic Bishops on Care for Creation
by Grace, Brecklyn, and Alex Wilde
While we were on our mission trip in the Philippines, we helped in a village called Isla. Isla is a beautiful little farming village where the people spoke Vasayan. The houses are made of braided bamboo. Some of the people ate a simple meal such as rice. The roads are made of dirt, so when it would rain, it would get very muddy and slippery. Two days before the Bible study started, our friend Irene, from Isla, invited us to teach the kids from Isla a song for the children’s ministry. We decided the song should be a VeggieTales song called “I’ve got shoes”. The lyrics to the song are:
“I’ve got shoes, you've got shoes, all of God’s children’s got shoes!
When I get to Heaven gonna put on my shoes,
I’m gonna walk all over God’s Heaven, Heaven, Heaven!
Everybody’s talking ‘bout, Heaven, I’m going there, Heaven, Heaven, Yeah!"
We ran in the rain to a big pavilion by a church for the Isla Bible study. It was very muddy from the rain, and dark so it was hard to get there. This is what the pavilion looked like: There were wooden rooms with a space for doors, benches all around the edges and at the back of the benches were short walls. After a while more people came. Irene said that not as many people would come because it is so hard to get there in the rain.
We started dancing and singing to some fun Christian songs. One of the songs was called: “I wanna be a sheep ba ba ba ba”. Another song was called “This little light of mine”. Everyone was dancing and singing together. Some of the kids, including us, were running around in circles, while everyone else ran around us. The kids were then assigned to go to a separate pavilion with two nursing students, and Irene and her husband, Ricky. That was were the children’s ministry would be.
It started with us teaching the kids the VeggieTales song called “I’ve Got Shoes.” We taught all the kids how to act it out with movements. After that, we told them the story of Jonah and the whale. Irene's husband acted it out. Everyone laughed when Jonah,got eaten by the whale. He covered his head with a towel when he pretended to get eaten by the whale. Everybody was saying “Whaale, whaale.”
Afterwards, we asked them questions about the story. Some of the questions were “How long was Jonah in the whale?” and “What did Jonah say to the people?” Next, we sang another song called “The Banana Boat Song.” After that, we asked them if they wanted the next story to be David and Goliath, or Noah. Everyone said Noah, except two kids. One of them said David, and one of them said Goliath. But even though mostly everyone wanted Noah, Irene decided that the story should be David and Goliath. Alex acted out David and Ricky acted out Goliath. Then we asked some questions about David and Goliath.
Then Irene gave out bread to the kids as a special snack. Some of the bread had spices. Some of them were plain, but the best ones were the ones filled with cream. Everyone loved them.
The best part about it all was when we gave some of our own stuffed animals to the kids as a present. Our friend, King, got Snoopy Small, which was a small snoopy that had a shirt on. His sister, Princess was given a stuffed animal Ballerina, and our friend Drizzle got Moosy, a puppet moose. King did not want his stuffed animal, so he traded his stuffed animal for Spotty, a dog with spots and bows on her ears. Princess got Ballerina bear, and she carried it everywhere she went. Everyone loved their stuffed animals.
When we were finished, everyone ran back to the big pavilion and played the attack of the stuffed animals. Alex asked one of the kids what he named his stuffed animal that was a Texas Tech monkey, and he said that it's name was Walla. King and his cousin taught us a handshake that was really cool.
And then we went back with our friends to Canossa. But, our friend Lolei had not come to the bible study, so we gave her our big Snoopy, (it was already like she was owning it because she loved to play with it!) She loved Snoopy so much, that when we gave Snoopy to her, she asked us “It’s mine? Really?!”
Giving our stuffed animals to people fills us up with unexplainable joy. It is the virtue Joy that just stuck to all of us. Joy is one of the best virtues ever, and it seemed to stick to us for the rest of the week, it seemed to never come off. The Joy helped us through the rest of the week to do the impossible.
by Brecklyn Wilde
You hear howling in the night and you go outside to see what it is. Then you see a figure facing towards the moon. What is it? You probably just saw a wolf. You might think that you should run back to home, but if you just leave it alone it might not attack you.
You might have heard a bunch of stories about wolves, like “Little Red Riding Hood”, but they all talk about wolves attacking people. Wolves have actually been developed to be afraid of people because people have hurt them.
Wolves are dogs just adapted. But that does not mean that you go up to it and hug it. Even though they are afraid of people, it will still attack. A long time ago, wolves were supposed to hunt and bring back food for people. In that way, the people did not have to hunt. The differences between a dog and a wolf is that wolves are not suited for being domestic. Another reason why is that wolves are bigger than dogs. Wolves are also used to hunting more than dogs.
Wolves have different colors. Some are grey, black, white, brown, or multicolored. There are a bunch of different types of wolves such as the Red Wolf, the Arctic Wolf, and the Grey Wolf. Wolves have different names for each of their teeth, such as incisors, canine, molars and carnassial.
Wolves travel in packs. That way when they see prey, they can attack from all sides. I'll give an example. Let’s say that the wolves are traveling in a pack and they see a moose come by. The wolves cluster and come from all directions and they get the moose. Now let’s say the wolves were not travelling in a pack, they were traveling in a straight little line and that moose comes by. The wolves come from one direction and the moose reaches safety in the water and swims to the other side. The wolves won’t have any dinner that time.
When wolves run, it is called a marathon. They run for miles and miles each day almost without stopping. Wow! You would think that the wolves would never have a break! But they do. They rest when they eat and come back to their den to sleep.
Wolves are able to breed at 9-10 months old. Wolves can adopt other wolf babies when they alloparent. When wolf babies are just born, they are blind, helpless and have almost no sense of smell. They start to open up their eyes when they are between 11 and 15 days even though their eyesight is very faint. When they reach 12 weeks, they start to join the pack even though they don’t participate.
Whenever wolf packs are being spied by other animals, they move to a different den. Wolves find dens anywhere: in hollow river banks, or even other animal’s dens. When the wolves are cubs, the mother always stays with them in the den so that the cubs do not get hurt or even eaten. The mother has to be very protective.
When wolves show how they feel they use their body. For example, when a wolf wants to show that it is offended, it puts its ears and tail down. When a wolf wants to show that it is playful, it rolls on it’s back and kicks its feet in the air.
I love wolves. I think that when they howl, they sound beautiful. I think wolves are pretty.
by Alex Wilde
Hello! I’m Alex. I am going to tell you about cats. Here are all the types of cats I know: Persian, Snow Leopard, Tabby Cat, Lion, Jackal, Tiger, Siamese Cat, Bobcat, Cheetah, Jaguar, Leopard, Canada Lynx, Cougar, and Ocra.
Cats can jump almost 7 times their own height. Cats balance so good just because of their tail. Cats have soft pads on their feet that makes them quieter. Cats are carnivores because they eat meat. Smaller cats eat birds, fish, mice, and rabbits. Bigger cats eat deer and gazelles. Jackals can jump up high and can catch a flying bird!
Cats have sharper teeth than humans. We have flatter teeth then cats. Have you been bitten by a cat? I have. It hurt for a minute and then it was better. But don’t mess with cats that much because some bites hurt!!!!!!!!!!
Have you ever seen a cat? I have. My favorite cat is a Tabby cat because I have a Tabby cat. His name is Mr. Lover. Do you have a cat? Have you seen a kitten? They are baby cats. Our cat, Mr. Lover, is black and gray. If you have a cat, what color is he or she? What is your favorite type of cat? Persian, Snow Leopard, Tabby Cat, Lion, Jackal, Tiger, Siamese Cat, Bobcat, Cheetah, Jaguar, Leopard, Canada Lynx, Cougar, or Ocra?
This is how you say cat in Chinese: mao[猫]. This is how you say Tabby Cat in Chinese: Dà huāmāo [大花猫].
I think that cats are cute.
by Brecklyn Wilde
You see a panda at the Beijing Zoo in China. It came right towards you and is analyzing you. Awesome! That was my experience when I went the zoo. I think that you know what pandas are, and probably you have seen pictures of them, but have you ever wondered about the facts about pandas? Have you ever seen a real panda?
Hi, it’s me again, Brecklyn. I am going to talk about pandas. Pandas seem so cute and cuddly. Pandas are one of the most popular animals in the world! Pandas live in the cold, mountainous bamboo forests in China. The Panda’s thick fur helps them keep warm in the cold snowy mountains. The panda’s fur actually has three layers. The first layer is the black and white pattern that you can see. The second is pink, the inside one. The third one is the skin. Have you ever heard of pink fur!?
Pandas were endangered until last week. There were only 2060 pandas left. Pandas were endangered because their habitat, bamboo forests, were cut down by people. They were also endangered because people used to shoot them for their fur. China said that it is illegal for people to keep hurting the pandas. Zoos are trying to increase the population of the pandas. Humans found the first panda on November 9, 1927. Ming-Ming was the first panda born in captivity. She was born in the Beijing Zoo in China.
Scientists are still trying to figure out about pandas so that they can save the pandas. It is hard to find out about pandas because of their habitat and what people did to the pandas. Pandas are still a mystery to the world.
Pandas eat about 10-20 kg (20-40 lb) of bamboo in one day. That is a lot! Pandas spend more of their time eating than playing. Even though pandas seem to be carnivores, pandas only eat bamboo. The only way pandas eat meat is if they are in captivity. In zoos, pandas are fed yams and ham.
Pandas have babies at 4-8 years old. When Panda cubs are newborns, they are very tiny, hairless, and weigh 85-140 grams. When a panda is 7 months old, they weigh 20 pounds and can already climb trees. Also, when cubs are born, the father leaves the mother panda with the cubs. Pandas give birth mostly to twins. Usually, only one will survive in the wild. Panda mothers choose the stronger of the twins, leaving the younger one alone thinking that she does not have enough milk to feed both of her cubs.
Panda in Chinese is dà xióng maõ, which means “big bear cat”. There are more pandas being born at the Beijing zoo than in the wild. I remember when I went to the Beijing Zoo in China. I remember seeing the cute rolly-poly pandas in the zoo. The pandas were my favorite part of the zoo.
In the past, pandas have been thought of as rare and noble creatures. The red panda was actually the first panda found. The giant panda was discovered 48 years later. The Empress Dowagner Bo had a panda skull in her vault when she died. Sima Xiangru wrote that the panda was the most treasured animal in the Emperor's garden of exotic animals. The grandson of Emperor Taizong of Tang gave Japan two pandas and panda skin as a sign of goodwill. Even today pandas are popular creatures. Panda toys are one of the most popular toys.
Do you want to hear a panda legend now? Here it is: Zouou is a creature, a righteous animal. These were thought of as fierce as a tiger but vegetarian. It is described in some books as “white tiger with black stripes”. I guess that this is a panda. What do you think?
Adult pandas are 1.2 to 1.9 m in length. Pandas have black fur on its ears, around its eyes, nose, legs, arms, and shoulders. The rest is white. Pandas seem to be gentle even though it has been caught to be attacking people. The panda probably does not mean to be aggressive. It probably just does it because it thinks that it is going to get hurt. In zoos when people give the pandas toys, even the strongest toys are no match for the panda.
To help pandas eat bamboo they have “thumbs”. The panda’s “thumb” is not really a thumb at all! It is really just a large wrist bone called a radial sesamoid. A panda does not wrap its thumb around the bamboo like we hold a pencil. It actually wraps its five fingers around the bamboo. It puts the radial sesamoid forward to jam the fingers across the bamboo. It is very hard to break bamboo even with an ax! Pandas can break and eat bamboo because they have very wide, tall, and thick teeth. Pandas also get two sets of teeth like humans: the baby teeth and the adult teeth. Unlike humans, pandas have 42 teeth.
Pandas, just like cats, have slits in their eyes to protect them from the sun. Do you remember me talking about Mr. Lover having the slits in his eyes?
I want to be a vet when I grow up. I want to invent the I.A.C. which means International Animal Center. I am going to help animals all over the world. I am going to put centers everywhere in the world. I am also going to volunteer at places that are already there. I think that the first animal that I am going to help is the pandas in China. Some of the animals will be in cages, and some of them will be in the place where the animals are going to exercise. Each animal will have what they need, and some things that they want.
Pandas are smart, fun, creative, and beautiful animals. I just love pandas. I love how they act and play. I hope you learned a lot that time, and I hope you will see the pandas in one of the zoos in China. That is all for now!
By Brecklyn Wilde
I have a pet cat, and his name is Mr. Lover. Mr. Lover is a domestic, shorthair, indoor, tom tabby cat. Mr. Lover is striped black and grey. Mr. Lover is Chinese because he says “Mao”, and in Chinese mao means “cat”.
Mommy and Daddy got Mr. Lover in June 2004 when they got back from their honeymoon. When they went to a pet store, a lady held out a kitten for them. He turned out to be Mr. Lover. Mr. Lover actually chose Daddy instead of Daddy choosing him because Mr. Lover reached out for Daddy.
Every morning, Mr. Lover does his morning exercises and runs around the house pouncing at everything that goes past him. Mr. Lover loves lying next to the window. He likes looking outside and basking in the sun.
One time, he was stretching on the windows when the windows opened up! Mr. Lover fell beside the couch! After that happened, sometimes it looks like he thinks that the house is attacking him. He goes around the house with eyes alert, tail up, and looking like he is expecting something. He goes around the house smelling all the furniture and everything.
Mr. Lover plays with Daddy in the morning before breakfast in the rocking chair when Daddy holds out his hand and disturbs Mr. Lover. Mr. Lover tries to bite Daddy when he does that. Whenever someone cries or yells, Mr. Lover comes to whoever is making noise. He tells Mommy or Daddy about it like he wants one of them to do something about it. We used to chase Mr. Lover around the house until Mr. Lover found a safe place underneath Mommy and Daddy’s bed.
When Grace was born, Mr. Lover was the announcement. He had a bib on that said “Mommy says ‘we have to make room for a real baby now’” Mr. Lover sometimes sleeps on Grace's bunk bed and eats her hair. When Grace is asleep, she kicks Mr. Lover and he bites her. When Grace gets up sometimes she has bite marks on her. One time it was on her nose!
I like cats, but Mr. Lover is my favorite one. I do not know why other cats are not the same as Mr. Lover. I love Mr. Lover. He is the best, most playful, and funniest cat in the world.
🐱 😊 🐱
On a Mission
Two passionate parents and their four children are excited to bring His Word to everyone in need while living a life of Gospel poverty as missionaries. They invite you to join them on a journey to encounter our global neighbors that Jesus commands us to love through works of charity and service.