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Pope Francis' urgent plea on behalf of planet Earth

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Reflecting on the worsening climate change crisis in the eight years since he wrote his environmental encyclical letter Laudato Si’ – concerning the urgent importance of caring for our common earth-home – Pope Francis laments, “I have realized that our responses have not been adequate, while the world in which we live is collapsing and may be nearing the breaking point.”

And so instead of understandably giving up in frustration and saying to himself, “I have done all I can do. Government leaders, corporate CEOs, and most people are not listening – not listening to me, not listening to our wounded earth, not listening to the suffering masses of humanity, and not listening to the Creator”– our indomitable Pope Francis puts pen to paper and writes a bold sequel to his earlier environmental encyclical, this time titling it Laudate Deum (“Praise God”), addressed to “all people of good will on the climate crisis.”

Purposefully released on Oct. 4, the feast day of St. Francis of Assisi, patron saint of ecology, Laudate Deum boldly, even bluntly, challenges all of us to get out of our comfort zones to make the necessary government, corporate, ecclesial, and individual changes required to save the earth, the vulnerable, and future generations from catastrophic ruin.

Clearly challenging the position of climate change deniers, Pope Francis writes, “Despite all attempts to deny, conceal, gloss over or relativize the issue, the signs of climate change are here and increasingly evident. No one can ignore the fact that in recent years we have witnessed extreme weather phenomena, frequent periods of unusual heat, drought, and other cries of protest on the part of the earth that are only a few palpable expressions of a silent disease that affects everyone.”

Some charge the Holy Father with speaking outside the realm of his spiritual authority, saying he is not a climatologist. This sort of objection is nothing more than a red herring, designed to distract us from the objective scientific evidence that modern highly accelerated climate change is real, and is overwhelmingly due to human activity – mainly the burning of the fossil fuels coal, gas, and oil. See NASA’s website “How do we know climate change is real?” (https://climate.nasa.gov/evidence/).   

Supporting the fact that the pontiff has done his scientific homework, Italian physicist Giorgio Parisi, winner of the 2021 Nobel Prize in Physics, said it is significant that Pope Francis begins this apostolic exhortation with “a striking list of scientific facts.”

Pope Francis continues Laudate Deum’s prophetic challenge by defending poor people and poor nations who have contributed the least to climate change and its resultant global warming, but have suffered the most from the wealthier industrialized nations’ high use of oil, gas, and coal.

He writes, “The reality is that a low, richer percentage of the planet contaminates more than the poorest 50% of the total world population, and that per capita emissions of the richer countries are much greater than those of the poorer ones. How can we forget that Africa, home to more than half of the world’s poorest people, is responsible for a minimal portion of historic emissions?”

“The necessary transition towards clean energy sources such as wind and solar energy, and the abandonment of fossil fuels, is not progressing at the necessary speed,” warns the pope.

I hope this short column has whet your appetite to want to read the Holy Father’s prophetic apostolic exhortation Laudate Deum (“Praise God”) It will inspire and motivate you! Here’s the link https://bit.ly/45mk44f.

From the Bible’s first book of Genesis to Pope Francis’ Laudate Deum (“Praise God”), it is crystal clear that God has a wonderful plan for humanity and all of creation. But when we think and act in ways contrary to the Creator’s plan, we sooner or later bring sadness and even catastrophe upon ourselves.

The Holy Father concludes his apostolic exhortation with this wake-up call: “‘Praise God’ is the title of this letter. For when human beings claim to take God’s place, they become their own worst enemies.”

Tony Magliano
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Comments from readers

Charles Howard - 11/07/2023 07:21 AM
Thank you Tony for your post. No doubt that the climate does change by nature,for sure human beings by their industrialization has affected the climate, but I disagree that moving to renewable sources is the answer. For the sake of argument, there are two sides of this issue of what is called 'climate change'. But the Vatican has yet to invite climate scientists from around the world, even those who are censored for speaking their points to debate the issue and to see what is really happening. The Church is here to preach salvation to souls. Who are the very people and govt. agencies who have provided the climate information? Do they respect the Church's teaching on human life or not? Must we stop completely all aircraft, automobiles, ships and trains? Must we shut off all power grids that run by fossil fuels? Other than using bicycles, sail boats that don't use gas, lets ask the ultimate question. Should we all then start wearing boots and saddle straps to use horses to ride to the shopping malls, churches and other places? Getty up!! Our cars, planes, ships and trains burn fossil fuels more clean than ever. But at the same time, even if I am in favor of renewable sources, I do not favor human slavery to make lithium batteries for electric cars. The leadership in the Vatican needs to promote open debate on the climate then and let us hear the arguments, but at the same time understand that some of us don't want govt. agencies to tell us to use renewable sources when the very same people want to control and limit our freedom. To conclude, I ask all to do the research on the climate and look at both sides of the argument. There's too much censorship. My final suggestion is this, take back our land and start creating many family owned farms, with proper means of agriculture without corporate ownership and use of chemicals. Can we at least agree on that? That will help our planet.
Beth Watkins - 11/06/2023 04:21 PM
It is shameful and destructive to see the Pope so worked up about preaching the Gospel of Environmentalism of the elites and ignore the Gospel of Christ who mandated to baptize and make disciples of all nation, conforming the world to Christ and not the Church into the image of the world. Also, it is so devasting to see how he utterly ignores the 50 million human beings murdered each year by abortion, as if that is not a threat to humanity itself, besides ignoring the millions of youths led by false ideologies such as Tran-genderism and unnatural sexual vices, with a whole generation cut from God and the Church. That doesn't seem to matter to him. He cares more to save trees than save souls. This to me is a great scandal!! He has abandoned this obligation to teach and preserve the apostolic truths that brings salvation to humanity. Pope Francis needs to stop doing the bidding of the pro-abortion UN globalists and start preaching the Gospels to save souls! He is destroying the faith of millions and dividing the Church with his false gospels of "climate change."
Joe A. Iannone - 11/06/2023 02:51 PM
Earth is 1.2C above pre-industrial level. If we reach 2.0C rather than peak at 1.5C, the Earth reaches a Tipping Point. More than 42% of total carbon emissions since 1850 were produced after 1990. That’s why the Vatican signed the Fossil Fuel Nonproliferation Treaty. Also, if everyone lived/ consumed like we do in the USA, it would take 6 planets to supply these resources. Pope Francis is 86. His efforts are for our children’s children….submitted by joe a iannone
Valli Leone - 11/06/2023 01:16 PM
An environmental alarmist Pope Francis certainly is not! I think, dear reader, that you would change your mind if your home was sinking into the sea because of rising waters or if you and your family found it necessary to flee raging fires due to a lack of rainwater. In the Gospel, Jesus reprimands those who cannot respond to the signs of the times. We are those people right now. It does terrible damage for us to keep our heads in the sand while others are experiencing these horrific environmental changes I give thanks to the Lord Jesus Christ for raising up a leader like Pope Francis who is not ashamed of the full Gospel message and who does not cater to political parties or to strange beliefs that are selfishly-based and motivated. Thank you, Tony, for your wonderful article and for educating us in these much-needed ways. I certainly will read “Laudate Deum” and heartily recommend that the entire Body of Christ does the same. Get behind us, satan. You have no lasting power over God’s people or His glorious creation. Jesus never fails! 🔆❤️🔆
Carlos Garcia-Larrieu - 11/06/2023 12:31 PM
Sorry but our current pope is just another climate alarmist
Kathy Werthman - 11/06/2023 11:46 AM
Thank you for sharing this exhortation on a matter of utmost urgency for the entire world. Pope Francis is a wise and bold leader, and the world needs to listen.

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