Revive - A Quarterly Fly Fishing Journal Revive- Farewell Issue - Page 69

Dear Secretary Zinke:

In the Book of Genesis, God entrusts the well being of creation to humanity. Made in God’s image, we are called to be keepers of what God has made and ensure the riches of creation are

passed to future generations. As Montana religious leaders, we are grateful to live among some of the most majestic

examples of the Lord’s work: from Yellowstone, to the Crown of the Continent, to the Missouri River Breaks. Families transmit a profound love for our nation’s public lands and waters from

generation to generation through sports such as hunting, fishing and hiking, as well as study of the natural world. We enjoy showing hospitality to tourists who travel from all over our country and the world to enjoy the gifts of God’s creation. Many Montanans also travel our country to explore and enjoy all of our nation’s public lands. Because of our deep love of God’s creation, it is part of our Montana culture to champion the value of stewardship. As the Secretary of the Interior, you are among the chief stewards of God’s creation. You hold

tremendous responsibility for the well being of our public lands, waters, and biodiversity. We pray for you, as you listen for God’s guidance as a primary steward of our nation’s natural,

cultural, and spiritual heritage. One of the best ways our nation has lived out God’s call to stewardship is through our national monuments, which encompass areas of scientific, cultural, and historical interest to be conserved for future generations. National monuments have been thoughtfully crafted by US presidents of both parties since the time of President Teddy Roosevelt, and each have left a powerful stewardship legacy. Now, you have an opportunity to do the same – to build and leave behind a stewardship legacy. Yet, one of the first things President Trump has asked you to do is review and assess whether and how to un-do the stewardship legacies of his predecessors. We are deeply disappointed by news that you are seriously considering closing-off certain national monuments. These special parts of God’s creation encompassed in our national monuments belong to all of us- taking these public lands and waters away would be devastating. In the final hours of your review, we remind you these recommendations lie in your hands. YoU are free to recommend that all national monuments be left as they are, and indeed you should do so.