A New Covenant

Renewing A Rocha’s Vision and Mission

By Luke Wilson, CEO

November 13, 2023

A Rocha evolved as an organization over the last three years. We’d like to share the story of how we’ve grown and changed in one vital area.

Our identity.

For over a year, we worked with all 23 A Rocha organizations to develop a fresh identity that reflects who we are now and who we believe God is calling us to be as a unified community.

Our mission:

A Rocha’s mission is to live out God’s calling to care for creation and equip others to do likewise.

Our vision:

We envision a hope-filled world where communities flourish as people and nature thrive together.

Five commitments (what we call the “5 Cs”):

Christian – We follow Jesus Christ, who created the world and calls us to care for it.

Conservation – We protect and restore nature and are committed to local places and people over the long term.

Community – We invest in good relationships through our commitment to God, one another and the wider creation.

Cultural Diversity – We celebrate the insights, perspectives, and solutions offered by our diverse cultures.

Collaboration – We seek to work with anyone who shares our vision.

Why did A Rocha refresh our identity?

Leaders from across A Rocha have been drawn together in new ways ever since the tragic and deadly car accident with our Founders (Peter & Miranda Harris) and Executive Director (Chris Naylor) & wife Susanna in 2019. From death came a new covenant with the A Rocha Worldwide Family that describes our collective desire to work together on creation care.

After the tragedy, a small team was put together to reimagine how the A Rocha family would move together into the next season of missional work. The idea of having a covenant to help govern the structure came about to align our values and clarify the way decision-making worked and what it meant on a wider-scale to be part of A Rocha. 

As part of the covenant process, A Rocha boards and leadership teams discerned that we also needed to review our mission, vision and five commitments. In other words, our identity statements should reflect how we have evolved and grown, especially with the shared desire to be more closely connected and unified in our purpose.

This covenant was unanimously adopted and signed in January of 2021.

As we celebrated the signing of the new covenant, Peter Harris reflected on God’s covenant with Noah to never again destroy the earth (Genesis 6:1-9:19). This covenant was a commitment to maintain the inherent relationship between Creator and creation; his relationship with the natural order – implicit in the act of creation – whereby he promised never again to destroy the earth with a flood. This divine pledge, given unconditionally to Noah and to every living creature on earth, was accompanied by the sign of the rainbow1. Our inspiration comes directly from scripture and links back in purpose to the original covenant God made between himself and the whole earth.

3 Reasons we believe a refreshed identity matters to the future of creation care

  1. Creation goes beyond borders. So our refreshed identity emphasizes our shared mission, vision and commitments.
  2. The voices of the poor and those in the global south matter in this time of injustice and environmental degredation. So this work reflects a comitment and value to raise up their stories as our stories.
  3. We want to be generous. The resources of A Rocha Canada are already making a big difference around the world. And we want this to grow.

To bring it home from where we started, this evolution in our identity reflects our covenant with each other and God’s good world.

If you’d like to look behind the curtain at our internal presentation, feel free to watch this Zoom recording of our Staff Session on Refreshed Mission & Vision.

Vision Mission Update

Photo: Marco Forno (via Unsplash)

  1. Read Peter Harris’ sermon on Genesis 6:1 – 9:17, “Creation: God’s Covenant with the Earth

Featured photo: A Rocha International