ASIA/THAILAND - Camillian Religious to COP28 Leaders: Recognizing the role of religious organizations as relevant voices in resolving the climate crisis

Tuesday, 28 November 2023

Bangkok (Agenzia Fides) - "The impact of climate change is devastating communities around the world, exacerbating humanitarian crises, poverty, hunger and displacement. All of this calls us to care for our common home, the Earth." This is the message that Father Aris Miranda, Camillian missionary and executive director of Camillian Disaster Service International (Cadis), addressed to the leaders of the 28th United Nations Climate Change Conference 2023, which will be held from November 30 to December 12 2023 at Expo City in Dubai (United Arab Emirates). Returning from Bangkok, where the annual conference was held which brought together 37 leaders and members of Cadis representing seventeen countries, the missionary urged the leaders present at the Dubai conference, more commonly known as COP28, to take into account the collective call for urgent and decisive climate action. "The increasing frequency of natural disasters directly threatens human lives and well-being. We have a moral obligation to address the root causes of these crises. Pope Francis constantly advocates on behalf of the most vulnerable members of society, emphasizing that it is often they who bear the brunt of environmental degradation,” said the Director of Cadis. As representatives of vulnerable communities in our respective countries, we are united by a common commitment to justice, compassion and stewardship of our planet." "We believe that combating the climate crisis is an ethical imperative as well as a moral duty rooted in the fundamental principles of religious traditions. Pope Francis' encyclical Laudato Si' emphasizes the concept of integral ecology, emphasizing the interconnectedness of social, economic and ecological systems. As people of faith, we stand ready to collaborate with governments, NGOs and all people of good will to address the urgent challenges posed by the climate crisis. Together we work for a sustainable and fair future for all. “An integrated approach to sustainable development that respects the environment and human dignity is of paramount importance,” insists Father Aris. Our advocacy at COP28 must echo this conviction, urging delegates to adopt policies that promote change towards sustainable development.” In conclusion, Director Cadis launched an appeal explaining that "to progress towards the fullness of life by creating resilient communities converted to ecology, all people of good will, in particular COP28 delegates, must recognize the role of religious organizations in humanitarian efforts and environmental management, as well as the importance of spirituality, religious values and traditions as relevant voices in solving the climate crisis and in shaping policies and programs. May the decisions taken at COP28 reflect the values of justice, compassion and solidarity defended by our religious tradition. (AM/AP) (Agenzia Fides, 28/11/2023)