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Vatican hosts conference on 'the imperative to change course' on the environment

July 01, 2015

The Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace and the International Alliance of Catholic Development Organizations (CIDSE) are sponsoring a two-day conference entitled “People and Planet First: the Imperative to Change Course.”

The conference begins on July 2.

Among those present at the July 1 press conference on the event were Naomi Klein, a Canadian author who described herself as “a secular Jewish feminist who was rather surprised to be invited to the Vatican,” and Ottmar Edenhofer, co-chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

“The COP21 conference for climate change (Paris, 30 November to 11 December 2015) will be crucial in identifying strong solutions for climate change,” stated Cardinal Peter Turkson, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, whose remarks were read out at the conference. “The political dimension needs to re-establish democratic control over the economy and finance, that is, over the basic choices made by human societies.”

“We can save ourselves, but only if we let go of the myth of dominance and mastery and learn to work with nature-- respecting and harnessing its intrinsic capacity for renewal and regeneration,” said Klein.

“To our so-called leaders preparing their pledges for COP 21 [2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference] in Paris, getting out the lipstick and heels to dress up another lousy deal, I have this to say: eead the actual encyclical [Laudato Si’]-- not the summaries, the whole thing,” she continued. “Read it and let it into your hearts. The grief at what we have already lost, and the celebration of what we can still protect and help to thrive.”


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  • Posted by: koinonia - Jul. 01, 2015 12:12 PM ET USA