Deeming Pollution of Earth Sinful, Pope Proposes Climate Action as Sacred Duty

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“The world’s poor, though least responsible for climate change, are most vulnerable and already suffering its impact,” Pope Francis said. (Andrew Medichini/AP)

 

Humans are turning the planet into a ‘polluted wasteland full of debris, desolation, and filth,’ says Pope Francis.

 
Pope Francis on Thursday put forth an urgent call for people to actively work to save the environment, proposing that the Catholic Church add such a duty to the list of “seven mercies,” which includes feeding the hungry and visiting the sick, which Catholics are required to perform.

“We must not be indifferent or resigned to the loss of biodiversity and the destruction of ecosystems, often caused by our irresponsible and selfish behaviour.”
—Pope Francis
“Francis described man’s destruction of the environment as a sin,” the Guardian reported.

“The modern world has new forms of poverty, Francis said, and thus requires new forms of mercy to address them,” the Washington Post noted.

In his speech to mark the church’s World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, which the pope created last year, Francis accused humans of turning the Earth into a “polluted wasteland full of debris, desolation, and filth.”

Remarking on the planet’s rapid warming, Francis observed that “[c]limate change is also contributing to the heart-rending refugee crisis. The world’s poor, though least responsible for climate change, are most vulnerable and already suffering its impact.”

“We must not be indifferent or resigned to the loss of biodiversity and the destruction of ecosystems, often caused by our irresponsible and selfish behaviour,” he said. “Because of us, thousands of species will no longer give glory to God by their very existence.”

“We have no such right,” Francis said.

Francis’ speech built on ideas he first put forth last year in Laudato Si, his unprecedented encyclical on climate change and environmental protection.

Earlier this month, Francis also excoriated capitalism for leading to endless war.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Humans have speed up the natural process of earth changing environment. No matter what, earth will repair her self. The polar ice would continue to melt, with or with out humans. It’s to late to repair, what man has done. We just need to figure out, how to survive what’s coming. After the next great flood , and new ice age, who knows what earth will be like. We can’t focus on tomorrow. We have to focus on what we do today. What we all do today will effect the out come of tomorrow. Lets just make it a good one.

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