OCEANIA/PAPUA NEW GUINEA - The Bishops of Oceania: the care of the "common home" is urgent

Thursday, 12 April 2018


Port Moresby (Agenzia Fides) - The consequences of climate change on Countries and their economies in Oceania, and the response of the Churches, starting from "Laudato Si": the attention of the meeting of the Federation of Catholic Bishops Conference of Oceania (FCBCO) is focused on these issues, underway in Port Moresby from 11 to 18 April (see Fides 11/4/2018).
As Agenzia Fides learns, among the experts who intervened, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Vatican Secretary of State, in line with Pope Francis's encyclical "Laudato Sì", focused on the common condition of the entire human family: "We all share a common home that we call planet earth and, if on the one hand it seems obvious and truthful, this brings ethical implications for everyone on the use of land and sea resources", explained the Secretary of State in his speech.
The Cardinal did not hesitate to identify the catastrophes fueled by "unsustainable development", industrial exploitation and land abuse. Cardinal Parolin exhorted a "radical conversion of attitudes towards the gift of God's creation". In particular, he appealed to political leaders, but he also noted that "every person must put into practice a responsible and modest way of living". The Secretary of State also urged the participants to do everything possible to reverse the "globalization of indifference". "In today's world - reads the note sent to Fides -, borders cannot be places behind which we hide from global responsibility".
An report of how the effects of climate change can be measured was proposed during the Bishops' assembly by Professor Ottmar Edenhoffer, a world-renowned scientist who analyzed and pointed out the industries that most contribute to carbon emissions in the atmosphere. In his presentation the scientist explored the effects of climate changes that are less recognized such as droughts, floods and the consequent move of entire communities. He also explained that in countries where infrastructure is limited or where there are already tensions, forced migration can generate violent conflict. Professor Edenhoffer urged the Churches of Oceania to collaborate with the entire population so that coal emissions become a "non-negotiable policy". According to the scientist, many political parties all over the world agree that the effects of climate change are destructive, but the courage to align the real policies of states with this awareness is still lacking.
The last speech of the day on the "care of Creation" was held by Mgr. Primin Spiegel, Managing Director of "Misereor", a German charitable organization, which exemplified a virtuous international relationship between Europe and Oceania. (AP/AP) (Agenzia Fides, 12/4/2018)