Answering the call to be good stewards of Earth and all Creation by building a faith-based movement of environmental stewardship and conservation action.
Who We Are
Mormon Environmental Stewardship Alliance (MESA) is an independent, tax exempt 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, and not an official website or organization affiliated with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
We are a community of Latter-day Saints, friends and supporters, who find faith-affirming work in caring and advocating for God’s Creation, and acting as grateful beneficiaries and wise stewards of the earth to further His eternal purposes and instruction to care for all living things.
We strive to work in a manner consistent with this statement of principle by the president and prophet of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Russell M. Nelson: “As beneficiaries of the divine Creation, what shall we do? We should care for the earth, be wise stewards over it, and preserve it for future generations. And we are to love and care for one another.” (See here).
“We are stewards, not owners” (see “Our Home”). Latter-day prophets, apostles and other Church leaders have equated the environmental degradation of the earth as a symptom of the greed and lusts of society. Many people in the world have abandoned God’s purposes as it relates to our stewardship, and adopted instead the foolish precepts of mankind. Wanton consumerism has diminished our spiritual wealth and social capital. Misappropriation of the abundance of the earth’s resources to the wealthy harms the poor and disenfranchised of the earth, whom Christ commanded us to love, serve and support. When we pollute our air, our land, our water, and our atmosphere, we make the earth ugly and offend Him (see here for more on these themes).
Often, doing the right thing requires political and civic action and activism. This includes encouraging political leaders to take appropriate actions, and holding our elected officers “accountable for their acts in relation to them, both in making laws and administering them, for the good and safety of society.” (Doctrine & Covenants 134:1).
We are inspired by Church leaders who ask us to work together, build unity, and improve our communities, which includes educating and advocating for public policy and governmental action. We draw from the courage and conviction of advocates from across the political spectrum who are engaged in finding reasonable, appropriate and sustainable solutions to the enormous environmental challenges of our time (see here).
What We Do
Our faith leaders counsel us to do good. Joseph Smith said, “I teach them correct principles, and they govern themselves.” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith, (2011), 281–91). President Gordon B. Hinckley admonished us to, “…stand strong, even to become a leader in speaking up in behalf of those causes which make our civilization shine and which give comfort and peace to our lives. You can be a leader. You must be a leader, as a member of this Church, in those causes for which this Church stands” (see here).
The Church has well developed and carefully documented sites that give clear direction about the doctrines, beliefs and values related to caring for the earth and for each other:
- Gospel Topics : Environmental Stewardship and Conservation
- Church Newsroom : Environmental Stewardship and Conservation
The environmental challenges we face locally and globally are growing in both intensity and impact. There is great power in what we do individually, but societies and systems must also be aligned to facilitate individual choices and better collective outcomes. Based on the beliefs and values that we find in scripture, and statements of past and present Church leaders, MESA is directing our efforts toward ten key environmental stewardship and conservation opportunities, challenges and threats:
- Air quality
- Climate change
- Disaster recovery and resiliency
- Environmental justice
- Farm preservation and food security
- Public lands preservation and conservation
- Recycling, waste and litter
- Sustainable community development and beautification
- Water quality and conservation
- Wildlife and habitat preservation
Our goal is to amplify our collective actions, and magnify the efforts of advocates and leaders who are guiding better laws, public policies and best practices wherever they may be.
Since we launched this grassroots movement in 2013, we have accomplished much. Our membership has grown. We have developed a knowledgeable and supportive board of directors who are active and engaged—all passionate environmental stewardship and conservation leaders through numerous individual and professional affiliations. We have organized conferences, testified at federal, state and local environmental policy hearings, educated political and civic leaders, and led political rallies and civil demonstrations to champion these causes. We have encouraged and supported development of Church resources on environmental matters, which have become more clearly focused through the Gospel Topics and Church Newsroom sites. From these early initiatives, the MESA movement is growing into a recognized force for good in Utah and many surrounding states.
We invite faith-filled hands and feet, hearts and voices everywhere to join us in this vital work.