Several evangelical groups have praised Pope Francis' major encyclical on the environment released on Thursday, which warns that climate change is real and is impacting all of God's creation, including impoverished people in different corners of the world. Francis said that it's wrong to treat nature and other living creatures as "mere objects" for "human domination."
"We are grateful that the pope has joined with over 300 Evangelicals like Rick Warren, Rich Stearns, and Bill Hybels, and other Christian leaders who understand climate change is the greatest moral challenge of our time and the greatest opportunity for hope. It's time to make hope happen by fueling the unstoppable clean energy transition, stopping the ideological battles, and working together," said in a statement Rev. Mitch Hescox, president & CEO, Evangelical Environmental Network.
"Creating a new energy economy that benefits all and addresses climate change is not about a political party but living as a disciple of Jesus Christ. We urge all people of good will, especially fellow Christian conservatives, to read and study these timely words from Pope Francis." more >>
Scientists are praising Pope Francis' upcoming encyclical on climate change, a major written work calling on Christians to care for the planet and reverse harmful effects, which is set to be released on Thursday.
"The encyclical is going to go out to over 1 billion Catholics — that's a way of getting a message across to a segment of society that the scientific community could never do," said Jeff Kiehl of National Center for Atmospheric Research, according to USA Today. "I mean it's just unbelievable."
NASA climatologist Gavin Schmidt added: more >>
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon met Pope Francis at the Vatican on Tuesday and declared in a speech that tackling climate change is the one world issue that should unite all religious leaders, scientists and scholars. The leaders also agreed that man-made climate change is a "scientific reality."
"If ever there were an issue that requires unity of purpose it is climate change," the U.N. head said at a workshop titled "Protect the Earth, Dignify Humanity: The Moral Dimensions of Climate Change and Sustainable Development" organized by the Roman Catholic Church.
The Vatican and the U.N. issued a joint declaration at the end of meeting, which read: "Human-induced climate change is a scientific reality, and its decisive mitigation is a moral and religious imperative for humanity." more >>
Pope Francis has marked Earth Day by urging mankind not to exploit or manipulate the planet, but instead to safeguard the environment in accordance to God's call.
"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 said at the General Audience in St. Peter's Square on Wednesday, Vatican Radio reported.
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 our brothers, also of future generations." more >>
An interfaith imperative that brings together over 30 leaders from major world religions, including the World Evangelical Alliance, has launched a call to action to end extreme poverty by 2030 and tackle issues such as climate change.
"What does it mean for the Church to understand that God loves all the world?" asked Christine MacMillan, WEA's director for public engagement, in a phone interview with The Christian Post on Friday.
"There are two questions that you cannot change the answer to for yourself, or anybody else: Who your parents are, and where were you born. And the answer to those questions for some people in this world is devastating. We need to acknowledge that we do not live on an equal plane on this Earth, and God gives us a challenge to create some form of equality by loving our neighbors as ourselves." more >>
Reacting to more than 100 companies that have reportedly left the organization because of what it sees as misleading information, conservative policy group, the American Legislative Exchange Council, has reportedly threatened legal action against several activist groups accusing it of denying climate change.
Following the departure of big companies like Google from the group last fall and most recently BP in March, lawyers for ALEC sent "cease and desist" letters to Common Cause and the League of Conservation Voters asking them to "cease making false statements" and "remove all false or misleading material" suggesting that ALEC does not believe in global warming immediately.
On its website, ALEC says it "works to advance limited government, free markets and federalism at the state level through a nonpartisan public-private partnership of America's state legislators, members of the private sector and the general public." more >>