ACDO urges faithful to sign petition for Global Catholic Climate Movement
By Mike Baños
The Archdiocese of Cagayan de Oro is urging the Catholic faithful to rally behind Pope Francis and gather 10 million signatures for a petition which will be presented to world leaders during the COP21 Climate Summit scheduled next month at Paris which aims to build a consensus for a treaty to tackle climate change.
“We are invited to let our voices join Pope Francis’ call for Climate Justice and actively participate in the Global Catholic Climate Movement signature campaign – sign and let us gather 10 million signatures to press our political leaders to have political will to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions,” said Cagayan de Oro Archbishop Antonio Ledesma, S.J. in a pastoral letter “Creation and Petition signing for Global Catholic Climate Movement” addressed to clergy and lay faithful of the ACDO.
In a theological forum on Laodato Si’ held 18 September at the Patrick Cronin Hall of the St. Augustine Metropolitan Cathedral complex, Fr. Rey Raluto, Ph.D. STHD presented the salient points of Pope Francis; encyclical on the environment and climate change to participants from lay organizations, tribal associations and other civil society organizations.
Afterwards, those present jointly signed the petition and secured copies for dissemination to their respective organizations for signing by their members.
The Global Catholic Climate Movement (GCCM) was organized last January 2015, just before the pope’s trip to the Philippines.
GCCM is a community of thousands of Catholics responding to the Pope’s call to action in the Laudato Si’ encyclical composed of lay people, priests, religious, bishops and theologians, scientists, and activists from Argentina, the Philippines, the United Kingdom, Kenya, Australia, the United States, and many other nations in a global network of over 100 Catholic organizations worldwide working together on the climate change crisis, including interfaith groups, educational organizations and environmental NGOs. (See more at: https://catholicclimatemovement.global/introduction/#sthash.Jc4HH7jO.dpuf
Among its partners are the Manila archdiocese’s Ecology Ministry in the Philippines, Acción Católica Argentina, and Catholic Youth Network for Environmental Sustainability in Africa (CYNESA). U.S. participants include Catholic Climate Covenant, Catholic Charities USA, Catholic Rural Life, and the Leadership Conference of Women Religious.
GCCM Supporters include individual Catholics who help to raise awareness and organize activities for the GCCM, and Catholic organizations that help organize activities for the GCCM and amplify its initiatives through their networks.
‘‘Today too, amid so much darkness, we need to see the light of hope and to be men and women who bring hope to others. To protect creation, to protect every man and every woman, to look upon them with tenderness and love, is to open up a horizon of hope; it is to let a shaft of light break through the heavy clouds; it is to bring the warmth of hope! For believers, for us Christians, like Abraham, like Saint Joseph, the hope that we bring is set against the horizon of God, which has opened up before us in Christ. It is a hope built on the rock which is God.’’
+ Pope Francis, Inaugural Mass, March 19, 2013
Archbishop Ledesma outlines two ways for the Catholic faithful to support the GCCM campaign: sign the petition, and on a more personal level, to live simply, and reduce your carbon footprint.
“Climate change is a moral and political problem. Our human family is not solving this issue because our leaders have no political will to tackle it. So let’s raise our voice for climate justice, sign the petition urging world leaders to commit to ambitious climate action and solve this urgent crisis,” he said.
“Your carbon footprint is the amount of greenhouse gases produced to directly support your everyday activities, mostly by burning fossil fuel that emits carbon dioxide. At a personal level, follow these tips to reduce your carbon footprint: http://catholicclimatemovement.global/take-action/#sthash.C75gnsB.d.