Can Catholics go greener?

Bryan Cones| comments | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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I was pleased to read today of a new Catholic initiative on climate change, the Catholic Climate Covenant, which was introduced yesterday by Bishop William Skylstad of Spokane, Washington, according to a New York Times blog. Catholic insitutions--schools, hospitals, and parishes--together could make a big difference in our collective carbon footprint. The press conference focused especially on the effects of climate change on the poor of the developing world.

I was disappointed, however, that the focus seems more institutional than individual. I have yet to see our Catholic leadership start challenging the faithful as a whole to change our lifestyles by doing things like eating less meat, using less water, and in general generating less waste. As I argued in a column not too long ago, "How green is your faith," we should think of the care of creation (and its most vulnerable members) as a religious duty.

Of course, U.S. Catholic, always on the cutting edge, did an entire green issue in April 2008. You can find much of its content in our Earth Day section, "Celebrate stewardship."