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December 15, 2009

Pope urges action in face of climate 'crisis'

As talks continue in Copenhagen to address climate change, Pope Benedict XVI urged action "in the face of signs of a growing crisis which it would be irresponsible not to take seriously."

The title of his message for the World Day of Peace – “If you want to cultivate peace, protect creation” – echoes the peace day message of his predecessor, Pope Paul VI: “If you want justice, work for peace.”

“Can we remain indifferent,” Benedict asks, “before the problems associated with such realities as climate change, desertification, the deterioration and loss of productivity in vast agricultural areas, the pollution of rivers and aquifers, the loss of biodiversity, the increase of natural catastrophes and the deforestation of equatorial and tropical regions? Can we disregard the growing phenomenon of ‘environmental refugees,’ people who are forced by the degradation of their natural habitat to forsake it – and often their possessions as well – in order to face the dangers and uncertainties of forced displacement? Can we remain impassive in the face of actual and potential conflicts involving access to natural resources?”

The World Day of Peace is observed Jan. 1, but the Vatican released the message on Tuesday.

In it, Benedict refrains from “entering into the merit of specific technical solutions,” but says “the Church is nonetheless concerned, as an ‘expert in humanity,’ to call attention to the relationship between the Creator, human beings and the created order.”

“Respect for creation is of immense consequence," he writes, "not least because ‘creation is the beginning and the foundation of all God’s works,’ and its preservation has now become essential for the pacific coexistence of mankind. Man’s inhumanity to man has given rise to numerous threats to peace and to authentic and integral human development – wars, international and regional conflicts, acts of terrorism, and violations of human rights. Yet no less troubling are the threats arising from the neglect – if not downright misuse – of the earth and the natural goods that God has given us. For this reason, it is imperative that mankind renew and strengthen ‘that covenant between human beings and the environment, which should mirror the creative love of God, from whom we come and towards whom we are journeying.’ ”

Posted by Matthew Hay Brown at 2:33 PM | | Comments (28)
        

Comments

"And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, by reason of the confusion of the roaring of the sea and of the waves"
--Luke 21:25

Yet another reason I have left and never will return to the Catholic church.
As usual, the Church comes waddling into the debate late and on the side of the Leftists.
Climate crisis? Has our esteemed papacy not ONCE heard the news over the last three weeks?
There is no global warming.
The whole thing was a lie designed to move money around.
All the evidence is out for anyone to see now, thousands of emails, documents, and even the source code.
Type 'climategate' into your search engine. The truth is right there.

As a practicing Roman Catholic who does his best to adhere to the True teachings and traditions of the Universal Church and who has been a fan of Pope Benedict XVI thus far, I have to say I am sorely disappointed with his use of the term "climate change" along with the timing of Copenhagen and especially in light of climategate. The Pope is a highly intelligent and experienced man but he has also been known to have been misled by some of the more rouge elements that have infiltrated the Vatican, especially the Vatican press. Still this makes it painfully obvious that the Pope is not aware of the fact that the very people in positions of power meeting in Copenhagen that these statements associate himself with are those who wish to depopulate the planet of human beings in ways that will make the Nazi holocaust look like childsplay.

Is climate change truly to be linked to carbon dioxide concentration increase?
It isn't politically correct to say the contrary (a fanatic recently spoke of " ecologic NEGATIONISM"). Anyway I believe that the Holy Father is mistaken in that "crusade" since he himself now is striving to look being politically correct. That's not a good sign.
As a practising catholic I believe that the small and almost insignificant efforts which the political correctness is requiring will probably be useless if the roots of the problem (carbon dioxide) are proven right: To be confident in God to solve the matter and to pray Him with that aim would be wiser.
Will the Pope follow the next coming World government when it will require a drastic world's population reduction and promote sterilization, contraception, condoms, abortions, one child policy etc... ?

I am a devout Catholic who loves the Church, but I cannot believe the Pope on this one. Especially now that climatgate has exposed the real motive: money, and control. Will he follow the one worlders into global government and dictatorship? I hope that the Lord will send visions similar to what Pope Leo XIII had which will reveal the nature of evil within the Church, one of which is liberalism run amok!

Least we forget, the Pope can have his own ideas on any number of topics and is free to express them. Remember the flack he received over his belief that Islam was a religion that thrived on the use of force to increase its numbers.
The Church today has more than its share of liberal thinkers who as a matter of common conviction actually believe man is capable of destroying our environment for life as God had designed it. My response is “Just when did God grant us such power and has not it been known for years that this planet has undergone cataclysmic upheavals many times in order for it to be fit for humanity in the name of the Creator who has told us it is a world without end for us”?
Getting back to this article we should note that “headlines” often are used to shock us or capture attention. This is no exception. The Holy Father is only expressing his rightful belief that humanity as custodians of Earth owe it to the Creator to respect and preserve the nature of things here as he intended it to be. He is not an Al Gore disciple.
After all, our instructions were to multiply and “fill the earth and subdue it”. When and if required the time comes for the need to remake or renew the earth that will take the same power and authority which established it and it won’t be because mere mortals such as us with all our toys, tools or terror either willingly or by accident created the necessity.

You think the Pope doesn't know that most environmentalists are leftist?

He's probably trying to prevent an overreaction in the wrong direction...I think Copenhagen and the leftist cause is a joke because it perverts the good parts of liberalism. But lets be adult about this and not just go to one extreme or the other. Many business owners are at the ready to go back to ruining local landscapes like was common in the past if we let them. Just like enviro-fascists are ready to take over the world.

BELIEVE ME PEOPLE IT REALLY WAS POLLUTION THAT KILLED ALMOST ALL THE FISH SPECIES IN THE EAST RIVER!

And give me a break! You guys are a bunch of novices and the Pope, by all credible accounts, is one of the strongest minds in the world.

I promise you in the ten minutes you've thought about it you haven't come up with where the Pope got it wrong.

Benedict XVI is a conservative pope and protector of the traditions of the Church.

May God bless his soul and all his earthly goals! VIVA PAPA

And I thought the Pope was infallible. I guess if even he doesn't fit the Rush/Beck/Hannity mold he's wrong.

The Pope is only infallible when explicitly and solemnly declaring matters of faith and morals. Separately, the pope may speak of infallible teachings of Christianity without actually developing any teaching. Such as here, he speaks of where we humans have been given stewardship of earth and its creatures and that we should take care to try limit damage we do without going so far as having harsh inhuman treatment against our fellow human beings and their dignity. Now how we go about doing that is a prudential matter which even the pope and his "advisers" may have. This teaching exists whether or not global warming is significantly man-made.

Our stewardship and responsibility for the earth, its creatures, and our fellow human beings is an infallible teaching of Christianity. It can never be revoked, just as the inability to ordain women can never be changed. Even if a future pope came out trying to teach differently, even to the point of trying to make it look like it is an infallible teaching, he would still be guilty of heresy and the said "teaching" would not and never would be a teaching of Christianity, of Christ's one, holy, catholic, apostolic Church. To obstinately reject even a single teaching of the Church is to reject Christ Himself. Of course, we are all still sinners and will never be perfect in everything we are called to do in this life. So we repent and try to do better and improve ourselves through grace.

Now about man-made global warming. I used to believe everything that we were told about this from the scientists and media. That changed when I went to University so that I may one day become a physicist. I began to recognize that much of what was going about was not actual science according to the idealistic norms of science, but scientific pondering many years ago that eventually saw hearsay and rumors, being picked up by media, amplified and exaggerated, picked up by politicians and activists who saw it helpful to anti-life agendas, becoming ever so increasingly a religion of its own, etc, etc. What I see now is one large mess that has now been shown to be having effects on the scientists themselves. When 'science' starts belligerently attacking the slightest skepticism of all, it has ceased to be true science. Today I do not reject the possibility that we may very well be having the significant effect on climatic temperatures, but I do have large doubts concerning it. We should however be seeking reasonable improvements to energy, unnecessary habits, and such. Politicians and activists could start by being an example themselves by not using private jets, fleets of limos, etc. They talk the talk, but do not walk the walk. Which I find surprising if we are truly having such a grand crisis of the scale they keep informing us that we are in.

I am shocked and surprised at the Pope's new comments on Climate Change. In his papal release-13 Dec., 2007 for World Peace Day he admonished all of us not to believe the "Climate Change Prophets of Doom". While it did not receive much publicity by the main stream media it was quite clear in it's message. The article was published in the dailmail.co.uk on 13 December 2007 and is available by a google search.

Accoding to the news report the the "the leader of more than a billion Roman Catholics suggested that fears over man made emissions melting the ice caps and causing a wave of uprecedented disasters was nothing more than scare mongering".

In Octer of 2007 Cardinal George Pell of Australia criticized Australian scientists who had claimed temperatures would raise by 5 degrees on Earth by 2070-Cardinal Pell cited that temperatures on Mars had increased by .5 celsius at the same time as on Earth-saying "The industrial-military complex up on Mars can't be blamed for that".

Someone at the Vatican needs to explain the sudden change in attitude-something is not right!! Who or why did the Pope change his mind so suddenly!!

Unfortunately the pope has no idea about the sheer fraudulence and financial greed of scientific groups who have been manipulating climate chnage data to fit their alleged global warming models. there are plenty of signs of this going on - Al Gore's video comes replete with at least 9 serious scientific flaws and the money he and his ilk are making out of this sxcaremongering is absolutely scandalous. here is another link which involves the Russians who are crying foul too thankfully - http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/jamesdelingpole/100020126/climategate-goes-serial-now-the-russians-confirm-that-uk-climate-scientists-manipulated-data-to-exaggerate-global-warming/#comments

it is about time the pope focussed on the cancer that is eating away at the skeletal remains of christendom in a Europe without The Christ and a modern Catholic Church which is gravely subdivided and a hierarchy which has spent 50 years compromising with the secular world. Our Blessed Lady has said as much at Akita. The rush to plaese the global warming ruling clique is but another example.

Don,
You are right to remind the Pope's speech about the "Climate Change Prophets of Doom" in 2007.
Sometimes the Pope lacks coherence when he states in profane issues where he has not infaillibility (while ignorant catholics are believing the contrary) nor even he is a pundit.

Man O man the infallible Pope fallible in carnal matters but not in spiritual ones--what a bunch of brain washed idiots. Look fellas and ladies, even if climate change wrought by human beings is no more than an evil misbegotten myth, concocted deliberately by greedy scientists and econazis hell bent on enriching themselves--here are facts--we are running out of fossil fuels--we are not to lead profligate lives according to all religious precepts--we are better off breathing clean air--our revulsion for smog and pollutants is natural--we recoil from these because we choke on them--we find breathing difficult--we develop asthma, COPD and coronary artery disease when we clog ourselves with the by products of carbon emissions--and why would we want to do that--because climatologists have manipulated data to fit their preconceived models to keep getting grants to propagate lies and fill the pockets of the leftists with plenty of money to make films and jet away to spread canards about our ways of living and being?

We are in dire need of clean energy sources--we have to protect ourselves from the poisons spewing from coal burning power plants--mercury is one of them--other potent environmental carcinogens are involved--anyone on this board experienced cancer or has a relative with cancer or dead from cancer? Cancer has touched modern man like no other disease and even when all other causes are accounted for the environment stands out as a major threat to human life--a major cause of human disease.

And look what we do when we burn fossil fuels---we genuflect to our enemies---we accommodate them--we go to war with them, against them, for them and we now see the rise of global terrorism in those regions where oil is aplenty. To be free of this menace should be our aim.

We should look for alternative sources of energy, we should conserve what we have, we should harness YOUR god given sun, wind and water, we should help Third World countries build more energy efficient stoves for their needs, we should preserve the splendid varieties of creatures in our forests and our rivers for we are neither to be authoritarians nor to be hegemonists, we are to be merciful to all life, even life that does not resemble our own, for when we burn forests without compunction we burn a treasure chest of medicines, fruits and vegetation that could save our lives, we burn a number of animals that could teach us a thing our two about ourselves.

All the things we must do to prevent man made climate change will reap huge secondary benefits. The naysayers are neither on the side of man nor on the side of THEIR Gods--or GOD CREATURES as Robert Littel would put it. The Pope is an opportunist--he wants to appear knowledgeable and be on the right side of history--he knows that climate science may have been perverted but he also realizes that each generation will balk at finding solutions, making sacrifices, each generation will want to postpone the pain until the cup runs over with sorrows--can't you see--there is a rush in the Vatican to join the science bandwagon--they don't want--and rightfully so--be the antediluvians of the 21st century--the lesson that Galileo taught is a lesson etched in the memory of the church--the church has its own observatory--its own physicists and its own climatologists--it is neck deep in secular and political matters--meddling here, there and everywhere and it doesn't want to be left out in the cold of scientific debates by betting on the wrong side.
Ravensfan Anon

"All the things we must do to prevent man made climate change will reap huge secondary benefits."

There we go again with the politically correct hyperreality simulacra of the nepotististic global warming elite. There is no evidence at all of an absolutely objective scientific nature that demonstrates this model. Furthermore, fossil fuels can be burnt very cleanly these days using the right technology generated initially by scientific discoveries which in their turn will find solutions, and have been already for some years now, to the current mass consumption of energy conundrum. There are still fossil fuels in abundance.
The scaremongering doomladen shibboleths that haunt such emails as the above typify half-digested subjective misinformation dressed up as educated environmental sensitivity. In reality it is the byproduct of mediatised liberalist ignorance.

I live and work in two places in the developed world and the air is wonderful. In places where it could be improved the corporatist capital accumulating billionaires who have benefitted from industial and commercial exploitation (aided and abetted by self-serving politicians) should be obliged to invest in improving the environements they have put under pressure and ought not to be allowed to be accumulating their wealth endlessly in order to enhance their own economic monopoly that is the basis of their political power. It is these same culprits who are pushing governments into half-baked climate change programmes that will bring more economic capital into their avaricious clutches.

slayer,

If, by stating "There is no global warming" you mean that there is no global climate change, then you are very sadly mistaken, and mistaking the crux of the argument.

If the climate did not change, and do so on a variety of time scales (decadal, centennial, millenial and longer), then there would have been none of the seventeen identified ice ages that have been identified over the past two million years.

The question is not is the climate changing, but rather there are two questions. First, is human activity, in the aggregate, making a significant contribution to what change is taking place? Second (and in some sense independent of the answer to the first question), is there anything that humanity can do to prevent that change from overwhelming human society, which action(s) will not in and of themselves overwhelm society?

Pax et bonum,
Keith Töpfer

The best thing the pope could do to further the cause of reversing our looming planetary environmental problems, is to state he has received a revelation from god, that we have successfully obeyed the mandate to be fruitful and multiply, and that now we are commanded to use our heads and our brains to end further population growth, with the goal of reducing it before 7 billion of us pee the pool we call Earth, beyond the point of redemption. Not only should this be done, but it should have been done by the pope, decades ago.

Robert Littel - No such mandate ever existed. In fact the church pushes the idea of abstinence. The problem is we are too busy giving in to our own selfish desires to bother thinking about little things like the planet.

Anonymous - And how is that "abstinence" thing working out? Time to come up with a new mandate. The problem with religionist absolutists is that there is never any flexibility in their attitudes, that will make room for the pragmatic approach that could be effective in dealing with serious problems.

Robert Littel - You mean like abortion on demand, telling kids its ok to have sex underage just use a condom. It's time to accept that these serious problems are the result of our own vices greed, lust, selfishness and so on. I haven't seen any pragmatic approach that wants to deal with that simply find ways to excuse it or blame someone else for it.

We have had 30 years or so of liberalist and socialist policies on birth control, sex education of minors and other so-called "pragmatic" approaches and they are all absolute failures. It is impracticable to even imagine people can have all the freedom they like and behave responsibly - this is leading us toward a state of neo-barbarism.

Anonymous - In fact, because of the necessity to lower population levels before we choke to death on the waste products excreted into the air, water, and soil, in the effort to feed,clothe, warm, and move around the nearly 7 billion of us now peeing in the collective pool we call Earth, we should have FREE abortion on demand, until we can get effective birth control and sex education into the hands of every man, woman and, when age appropriate, every child on the planet.

You are not going to stop sex in children once the hormones turn on, no matter how repressive your scare tactics are, so we might as well start dealing with reality from a perspective that will have impact on the problem. If religion means to stand in the way, then it must be knocked on its butt and trampled to death by an age of intellectual awakening.

Bravo Robert and Anonymous, snip the big words out and there is little that you actually say in your rant that makes any sense. I have lived in various parts of the world and in the developing world people are choking on the smog that fills the air. Are you a doc Anonymous--the number of asthma and COPD cases unrelated to smoking are through the roof--just because you say the air is pristine where you live and breathe does not mean it is actually so--what are you? The final arbiter of air purity over any place you inhabit? It is common sense that fossil fuels are finite in amounts--it is common sense that conservation will stretch them longer--it is common sense we must seek alternative sources of energy--we must diversify--reliance on foreign oil has brought us much grief--you have not given a point by point rebuttal of what I have written about Anonymous--instead you got out the Thesaurus and blabbed away some invectives against liberals who, according to you, are enriching themselves thorough climate science--all this does not change the fact that particulate matter has probably penetrated your brain Anonymous, established small vessel disease there, caused punctate deep white matter ischemia and led to your meaningless verbal pomposity.
Ravensfan Anon

Robert Littel - So let me understand this abortion on demand is needed because kids can't control themselves once hormones are switched on. Excuse me but that sounds rather moronic. I don't disagree about sex education being taught. Of course if kids can't help themselves once their hormones kick in what good would educating them do? No it's a question of teaching kids respect and responsibility at an early age and from getting rid of relativism and the pragmatism you hold so dearly. Your answer has not worked and will not work. You consider yourself the enlightened and Christians the backwards thinking ones. That would he comical if there weren’t so many naïve people who believe that nonsense you advocate. China’s been trying it for quite a while now with no success. The illusion is that you can solve the problem without a common sense of what is morally right and wrong. Truth is truth and nothing you say can change that.

Ravensfan Anon - There appeares to be more than one Anonymous poster here. I don't disagree that we need to do take this issue seriously.

Anonymous - It is time to be pragmatic about sex. I know that the Puritan ethic requires that sex be considered dirty (a condition I personally only share if one is doing it correctly, a good thing) and that anything that might result in someone having sex outside of the prostitution of marriage (believe me, ALL sex is sold, unless stolen {rape}), unless it is given freely by both sides in the exchange. Children should be instructed on the dangers of having sex before they are emotionally prepared (which occurs long after they are physically turned on), and that we deal with the reality that some will succumb to a very powerful temptation. The best we can do is prepare them for that eventuality and hope for the best. That is the realistic thing to do, but when has fundy religion ever been pragmatic?

I wanted to say thanks and keep up the good work. Some would say that weather patterns are changing, but that's normal in the history of this planet, and there's nothing we can do about it. I would say, what if you're wrong?
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action in face of climate 'crisis'
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About Matthew Hay Brown
Matthew Hay Brown writes and blogs about faith and values in public and private life for The Baltimore Sun. A former Washington correspondent for the newspaper, he has long written about the intersection of religion and politics. He has reported from Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East, traveling most recently to Syria and Jordan to write about the Iraqi refugee crisis.
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