April 22, 2016 marks the 46th anniversary of Earth Day, a secular celebration that many faith communities have incorporated into their annual calendars. As Pope Francis noted on this occasion last year: “I exhort everyone to see the world through the eyes of God the Creator: the earth is an environment to be safeguarded, a garden to be cultivated.”
Francis continued: “The relationship of mankind with nature must not be conducted with greed, manipulation and exploitation, but it must conserve the divine harmony that exists between creatures and Creation within the logic of respect and care, so it can be put to the service of all people and to future generations.”
This year, CRL and the Catholic Climate Covenant are calling attention to trees and their ability to absorb pollutant gases and help produce clean air for us to breathe. Visit Catholic Climate Covenant to download “Trees for the Earth” – a program guide to help you plan a one-hour celebration at your parish, school, or community.
Interfaith Power & Light
Several of our members are active in Interfaith Power & Light (IPL) campaigns. In early May, about 70 leaders of IPL affiliates working with congregations on climate in 40 states will be gathered in DC for our national conference to share best practices, learn about pressing energy and climate issues, and to advocate to their state legislators.
For our part, CRL will keep our network informed on faith communities’ role in environmental justice. Besides IPL updates, there is also helpful resources from a national group called We Act for Environmental Justice.
Sacred Earth, Sacred Trust
Do you know about Sacred Earth, Sacred Trust? On or around June 12th, diverse faith and spiritual communities and people all over the world will show world leaders that we want increased responses to climate change concerns.
This global day of faith-based climate action is six months to the day after the Paris Agreement was adopted last December. It is also one week before the anniversary of the release of Laudato Si: Care for Our Common Home.
According to the Franciscan Action Network which has pledged to act on June 12, faith communities can plan to hold services outdoors, stage pray and meditation sit-ins, organize a march through their town or city — or just take the time to talk about the climate crisis and share a prayer for our precious earth.
“By acting together, we can articulate a vision for the future, an ambition, and pressure that our leaders cannot ignore. We hold great power and influence working together and we can use it to build a better, safer world, which protects billions of people from the ravages of climate change.”
If you are interested click here to sign on as a partner of Sacred Earth, Sacred Trust.