Catholic Perspective on Climate Change



337 God himself created the visible world in all its richness, diversity and order. Scripture presents the work of the Creator symbolically as a succession of six days of divine "work", concluded by the "rest" of the seventh day.204 On the subject of creation, the sacred text teaches the truths revealed by God for our salvation,205 permitting us to "recognize the inner nature, the value and the ordering of the whole of creation to the praise of God."206

339 Each creature possesses its own particular goodness and perfection. For each one of the works of the "six days" it is said: "And God saw that it was good." "By the very nature of creation, material being is endowed with its own stability, truth and excellence, its own order and laws."208 Each of the various creatures, willed in its own being, reflects in its own way a ray of God's infinite wisdom and goodness. Man must therefore respect the particular goodness of every creature, to avoid any disordered use of things which would be in contempt of the Creator and would bring disastrous consequences for human beings and their environment.

2402 In the beginning God entrusted the earth and its resources to the common stewardship of mankind to take care of them, master them by labour, and enjoy their fruits.186 The goods of creation are destined for the whole human race. However, the earth is divided up among men to assure the security of their lives, endangered by poverty and threatened by violence. The appropriation of property is legitimate for guaranteeing the freedom and dignity of persons and for helping each of them to meet his basic needs and the needs of those in his charge. It should allow for a natural solidarity to develop between men.

Earth and life was a gift from God, and it is something me must value. We as humans- the only ones able to think and respond to God- must take care of what God has created. We when pollute and waste, it causes changes in our planet, changes that negatively impact all living things. The ecological destruction and loss, inhibit our ability to see and experience God and all his wonders. God has certain intent for our world and we need to respect all creations. It is our greedy nature that diverts us from God, and we take advantage of what we are given. The Catholic Catechism states that man has to be respectful to avoid any disorder in things. Climate change is disorder, places that had cold climates fro a reason are now becoming warm, and warm places are becoming extremely hot; more and more is it becoming evident that we have completely disregarded or have been ignorant to our world. God have entrusted it in our hands, and now we have to fix the problems that only appeared because of us.

1913 "Participation" is the voluntary and generous engagement of a person in social interchange. It is necessary that all participate, each according to his position and role, in promoting the common good. This obligation is inherent in the dignity of the human person.

Climate change is a global problem, and everyone is affected and everyone is responsible for the decline in the quality of our world. If we want to stop the effects of our wasteful and greedy life, we all need to come together and make the difference. It is our duty to participate to try and conquer climate change, and it can only be accomplished with everyone working together. The catholic catechism says that it is part of human dignity to promote the common good, which means changing our lives to make the needed global change.

As people of faith, we are convinced that "the earth is the Lord's and all it holds" (24:1). Our Creator has given us the gift of creation: the air we breathe, the water that sustains life, the fruits of the land that nourish us, and the entire web of life without which human life cannot flourish. All of this God created and found "very good." Our response to global climate change should be a sign of our respect for God's creation.

From the wise words of Pope John Paul II, he reminds us that we are "faced with the widespread destruction of the environment, people everywhere are coming to understand that we cannot continue to use the goods of the earth as we have in the past." With the effects of our behaviour now visible, small changes are taking place, but much more needs to be done so the future generations of our children and grandchildren do not have an environmental deficit and can enjoy the pleasure we have. For Christians and all human beings, this must be our main concern. Pope John Paul II emphasizes that this crisis must be seen as a “spiritual” and “moral issue.” Coinciding with Pope John Paul II, Canadian Archbishop Bertrand Blanchet, also agrees that protecting the earth's environment requires a "spiritual commitment" for every individual to do his or her part. Archbishop Bertrand Blanchet states "I think it's a moral problem, because we have the responsibility to those people who live in certain areas of the Third World"; third world counrties can not fend for themsleves like a well developed nation and without action, they will face increased drought, floods and other extreme weather conditions. It is our obilgation as catholics to extend and help the poor.

A main concept of a catholic lifestyle is everything in moderation, and one's self control. With that said, we can influence our everyday lifestyles, by not wasting resources, cutting emissions, and participating in making a difference in our society. We must strengthen our selfcontrol, so that everyone can have a share in global resources. As we build our own morals, we become positive rolemodels for society. If we begin to treat others the way we wish to be treated, our behaviour and environmental habits can influence others. When we all work together, a great change can be made!

However, despite the Catholic teachings, millions of dollars are spent by major companies to deny the truth about global climate change. These major companies are involved with energy production, oil and other enviroment damaging productions, and make huge amounts of money. Out of greed, people focus on money and dont think about the repercussions of their actions. This behaviour that has to be change if we want to see our environment imporve. Below is a perfect example of the visible evironmental damages, and large companies trying to protect their wealth.