Catholics called to act on Pacific climate emergency

Speakers at the Edmund Rice webinar on climate change, from left, Bishop Vincent Long OFM Conv, Archbishop Peter Chong, Rev. James Bhagwan and Rev. Mata Havea Hiliau. The conversation will be facilitated by Sr Jan Barnett RSJ. (Catholic Outlook/supplied).

Parramatta Bishop Vincent Long OFM Conv and the Archbishop of Suva Peter Chong will join an ecumenical panel for a webinar on the urgency of addressing climate change globally and in the Pacific. Source: Catholic Outlook.

The webinar is being organised by the Edmund Rice Centre and will take place on Friday, September 17, at 5pm AEST.

In the run-up to the global climate summit (COP26) in November 2021, the world’s top Christian leaders – Pope Francis, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby and Orthodox Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, have released an unprecedented statement calling on people of all faiths to act in order to halt the devastating impacts of climate change.

This statement arrives on the heels of a major report from the United Nations’ climate science body warning that climate change is accelerating, almost entirely driven by human activity.

The statement also follows the release of the Australian Catholic Bishops’ Social Justice Statement 2021-22,Cry of the Earth, Cry of the Poor, which commits all Australian bishops to a seven-year journey towards seven Laudato Si’ Goals.

“We are facing an ecological crisis and Pope Francis wants the whole Church globally to act with a greater sense of urgency,” said Bishop Long, chair of the Bishops Commission for Social Justice, Mission and Service.

“In Australia, passionate individuals, religious institutes, schools and organisations have been working on ecological issues for a long time. I want to affirm and thank them all and urge the whole Catholic community to join them.”

Friday’s webinar will see Bishop Long joined by Archbishop Chong, Pacific Conference of Churches General Secretary, Rev. James Bhagwan and Rev. Mata Havea Hiliau, Moderator-Elect of the Uniting Church NSW/ACT, for a conversation facilitated by Sister Jan Barnett RSJ.

The webinar will have a special emphasis on the urgency of addressing climate change for Australia’s Pacific neighbours who are already experiencing the destructive impacts of rising sea levels and more intense and frequent storm surges.

It will also aim to inspire participants into advocating for urgent and stronger climate action by Australian and global leaders.


The ‘Cry of the Earth’ – a call to action for all Catholics: upcoming webinar (Catholic Outlook)


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