There are extensive properties
owned by religious communities
that are still in a relatively undisturbed state,
where wildlife is often abundant,
where human predation is limited,
where the primordial impress of the divine can still be felt,
and where a sense of the sacred is available.
Preservation of such lands
is one of the great urgencies of the moment.
There is profound need of the human soul
for contact with natural processes.
These regions were wildflowers grow and where bird nest
have become infinitely valuable as places
more needed than ever by the human spirit.
Such regions might be thought of as shrines
where the pristine impress of the divine
can still be experienced.
To lose these lands
to development would be an irreparable loss.
Thomas Berry in The Christian Future and the Fate of the Earth