Catholic eco-warriors ‘euphoric’ over new encyclical

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MANILA, June 22, 2015—The Global Catholic Climate Movement (GCCM) expresses joy over the release of “Laudato Si’,” thanking Pope Francis for sounding the alarm on climate change, and for highlighting the importance of “caring for creation, protecting human dignity, and safeguarding our common home.”

Urgent call

“This beautiful and urgent call to action from Pope Francis, besides challenging our lifestyles and behaviors, has perfect timing ahead of the COP21 summit,” shares Tomás Insua, GCCM movement coordinator, in a recent statement.

Lou Arsenio, program coordinator of the Archdiocese of Manila (RCAM)”s Ministry on Ecology and co-founder of the Global Catholic Climate Movement (GCCM), thanks all those who are doing their part to fight climate change. (Photo: Raymond A. Sebastián)

According to him, Pope Francis himself said he wanted the encyclical to influence the international climate negotiations, and now is the time for Catholics and all people of good will to mobilize and remind world leaders of the moral imperative of climate action.

READ: Saint Francis and his star role in the Pope’s new encyclical  

Universal solidarity

Representing over 100 Catholic global organizations working on climate justice, GCCM joins Pope Francis in his call to “create a new and universal solidarity that recognizes those integral relationships between the social and economic ills of our age.”

The movement noted that a new and better paradigm of socio-economic development is necessary, one that is sustainable and includes intergenerational solidarity, in order to achieve this universal communion.

Broken notion of self, others

Bill Patenaude, GCCM co-founder and author of CatholicEcology.net, lauds the Holy Father for “forcefully and lovingly” reminding his family and all people of good will that ecological and social ills are rooted in a broken notion of the self, as well as of relationships.

“Even more, Laudato Si’ offers us a road map to heal those relationships–to offer peace to each person and healing to the world,” he adds.

Speaking on behalf of GCCM, Lou Arsenio, program coordinator of the Archdiocese of Manila (RCAM)”s Ministry on Ecology who is also a GCCM co-founder, thanks all bishops who raise awareness on climate change and urge other prelates and Catholics of the world to be more active in caring for the environment.

READ: ‘Jesus of Creation’  

Pinoy welcome

For their part, Filipino Catholics welcomed the release of Laudato Si’ in a live streaming event hosted by the Columban Fathers of Our Lady of Remedies Parish Church in Malate, Manila during which they monitored the proceedings at the Vatican.

Meanwhile, other Catholic communities across the globe celebrated the long-awaited encyclical on ecology which lays out the definitive moral case for climate action. (Raymond A. Sebastián/CBCP News)

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