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Pope Francis to Plunge Church into Climate Change Maelstrom (Epoca, Brazil)

 

"Pope Francis has spoken about controversial topics like the acceptance of gays by the Catholic Church and the actions of pedophile priests. He has denied the existence of Hell fire, Adam and Eve, has said that Catholics need not 'procreate like rabbits' and that when provoked, anyone has a right to fight back - forget all that talk of turning the other cheek. Now Pope Francis is preparing to stick his sanctified nose into yet another hornet's nest: global warming. With his charisma and strong vision of how to utilize the media, the pope will bring to the fore discussion on the responsibility of human beings for environmental degradation."

 

By Cristina Grillo

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Translated By Brandi Miller

 

May 17, 2015

 

Brazil - Epoca - Original Article (Portuguese)

Pope Francis embraces the theory that climate change is a result of human activity and infuriates skeptics of global warming.

 

Pope Francis has spoken about controversial topics like the acceptance of gays by the Catholic Church and the actions of pedophile priests. He has denied the existence of Hell fire, has said [the story of] Adam and Eve is a fable, that Catholics need not "procreate like rabbits" and has said that when provoked, anyone has a right to fight back - forget all that talk of turning the other cheek. He has said that social justice "is not a Communist invention." In a Rio shantytown, at the height of the 2013 demonstrations, he lit a fire under young people: he asked them to be revolutionaries and rebel. Last week he called those that say women working outside the home are to blame for the family crisis "machista [macho]" - and said the fact that women earn less than men is "scandalous." Now Pope Francis is preparing to stick his sanctified nose into yet another hornet's nest: global warming.

 

[Editor's Note: In late 2013, an erroneous news item circulated that attributed quotes about 'Hell fire" and "Adam and Eve" to Pope Francis at the end of the "Third Vatican Council." The trouble is there was no Third Vatican Council. The fictitious "news items" attributed the following statement to the pope at the close of this never-held Third Vatican Council:

 

"Through humility, soul searching, and prayerful contemplation we have gained a new understanding of certain dogmas. The church no longer believes in a literal hell where people suffer. This doctrine is incompatible with the infinite love of God. God is not a judge but a friend and a lover of humanity. God seeks not to condemn but only to embrace. Like the fable of Adam and Eve, we see hell as a literary device. Hell is merely a metaphor for the isolated soul, which like all souls ultimately will be united in love with God."]

 

Francis is preparing an encyclical on the environment, the first to focus on the relationship of human beings with the highest divine creation - planet Earth. An encyclical is a kind of letter circulated to bishops and cardinals containing guidance on certain issues. To the consternation of those who contest the responsibility of humans for climate change, the document will state that the action of man in this area is a fact proven by science and that minimizing this impact is a moral imperative. According to Francis, global warming affects everyone, particularly the poorest - since floods and tsunamis, for example, can become social disasters, hence the moral and religious motivation to address the issue. Tackling the issue of climate change is thus a matter of social justice.

 

As a born communications strategist, the pope carefully chose the moment to disclose the preparation of this document, which should be made public in June. In September, the United Nations in New York will hold a meeting to discuss sustainable development goals. Francis, who will be visiting the United States during this period, was invited by the U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to participate in the meeting. Three months later, in December, Paris will host the 21st Global Climate Change Conference (COP 21), where it is hoped that countries will commit to greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets and rules for minimizing global warming. Ban Ki-moon is counting on papal pressure to get negotiations off the ground.

 

A draft of the encyclical was discussed at a Vatican meeting organized by the Pontifical Academies of Science and Social Science. Political leaders, clergy, entrepreneurs and scientists participated. In the final declaration of the meeting it was affirmed that COP 21 may be the last remaining opportunity to achieve agreements to keep global warming within safe limits for humanity. "Climate-change mitigation will require a rapid world transformation to a world powered by renewable and other low-carbon energy and the sustainable management of ecosystems," states the text.

 

The possibility of papal interference in the field of science has provoked a reaction from those who advocate the thesis that man is not responsible for global warming. At the top of its Web page, the non-profit Heartland Institute funded by the oil sector's American billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch which carries the headline: Tell Pope Francis: Global Warming Is Not a Crisis! While leaders were meeting at the Vatican, Heartland organized a seminar in Rome on the topic.

 

"The Holy Father is being misled by 'experts' at the United Nations who have proven unworthy of his trust ... he would do his flock and the world a disservice by putting his moral authority behind the United Nations' unscientific agenda on the climate," said Joseph Bast, president of the Heartland Institute.

 

Early reaction to the papal encyclical is coming not only from businessmen like the Kochs. Robert Peter George of the Church's conservative wing wrote in the newspaper First Things that Catholics should keep in mind that popes are not authorities on scientific issues. He didn't need to name Pope Urban VIII who condemned Galileo for defending the theories of Copernicus, according to which Earth was not the center of the Universe but rather orbited around the Sun. The message was clear. The author of books like What Is Marriage?: Man and Woman: A Defense, George said Francis has the right and responsibility to teach and unite Catholics on moral issues, including when it comes to their obligations to the environment. But George asserts that the pope has no special knowledge of to what extent the climate change of recent decades is caused by man. "And God is not going to tell him," George wrote.

 

 

Francis isn't the first pope to concern himself with environmental issues. His predecessor, Benedict XVI, also used to write on the subject. In 2008 at a meeting with priests in Italy, Benedict said that "God entrusted to man the responsibility of creation" and that facing the problem of climate change is a moral obligation of Catholics. Again in 2008, he added environmental pollution to the list of capital sins for which followers of the religion should seek forgiveness. Benedict, however, was considered excessively intellectual and had little charisma, so his warnings went unheeded.

Posted By Worldmeets.US

 

Francis' encyclical, the draft of which has the working title Climate Change and the Common Good, will not be restricted to academic discussion. With his charisma and strong vision of how to utilize the media, the pope will bring to the fore discussion on the responsibility of human beings for environmental degradation. In dealing with a topic not exclusively religious, Francis' encyclical may have a political impact as strong as the Rerum novarum (of New Things) on the Rights and Duties of Capital and Labor written by Leo XIII in 1891. In it, the pope supported the right to form trade unions and discussed the relationships between government, business, workers and the Church.

 

"Benedict was an ivory-tower academic. He wrote books and hoped they would persuade by reason. But Pope Francis knows how to sell his ideas. He is engaged in the marketplace," said Catholic thinker Charles Reid Jr. The ring of controversy is set. For some ecologists, the Church's refusal to accept birth control methods contributes to environmental deterioration, since the demographic explosion puts pressure on the planet's resources. That's nothing that would deprive sleep for a man who has already said that Catholics needn't reproduce like rabbits; a pope who, upon bidding farewell to the Ecuador President Rafael Correa, took the opportunity to tell one of his jokes about the egos of Argentines [Pope Francis is Argentine].

 

"They were surprised when I decided to name myself Francis. They hoped it would be Jesus II," says former Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio. Francis knows that those without a good sense of humor don't deserve to be taken seriously - so with conviction and a smile, he puts thorny and contemporary discussions on the Catholic agenda.

 

 

SEE ALSO ON THIS:  

La Jornada, Mexico: Ban CIA Weather Manipulation Disguised as Climate Research

Die Tageszeitung, Germany: Climate Summit and Merkel's 'Cerebral Circuitry Overload'

News, Switzerland: Polar Vortex: To Warm Up - Move to Alaska!

Opera Mundi, Brazil: GMO's Benefit No One but Multinationals Like Monsanto
Nachrichten, Swtzerland, Spain: Science Explains Global Crises: People are Nuts!
Carta Maior, Brazil: Will Humanity Allow itself to be Excized Like a 'Cancer'?
The Tribune, India: Developing Countries Demand 'Climate Equity' from Wealthy
El Espectador, Colombia: U.S. Climate Change Deniers are a Threat to Other Nations
Dernieres Nouvelles d'Alsace, France: Obama Hits on Greatest Danger: The Way We Live

Estadao, Brazil: Rio+20 Fully Justifies Environmental Pessimism

El Espectador, Colombia: U.S. Climate Change Deniers Threaten Other Nations  

DNA, France: The Men and the Mermaid  

El Pais, Spain: 2009 - The Year Earth Outgrew Nation States

El Watan, Algeria: The 'Madness' of Copenhagen

Le Quotidien d'Oran, Algeria: Fiasco!: West Bets Climate Change Will Hurt Poor

Der Spiegel, Germany: German Press Concludes: 'Copenhagen Was All-Out Failure'

The Telegraph, U.K.: British Leader Says China and U.S. to Blame for Summit Failure

The Telegraph, U.K.: There'll Be 'Nowhere to Run' from New World Government  

Liberation, France: Global Cooperation - Gone Like a 'Mirage'

Le Monde, France: Copenhagen Climate Talks - 'Failure and Disappointment'

Le Figaro, France: The Climate and the Challenge of Governing a Planet

Der Spiegel, Germany: Gunning Full Throttle Into the Greenhouse  

Estadao, Brazil: The Rich Show Their Hand at Copenhagen

Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Russia: Gorbachev Presses World Leaders to Deliver on Climate

Kurier, Austria : Potentially Negligent Mass Murder: Climate Change Must Be Faced

Guardian Unlimited: Climate Summit in 'Disarray' After Leak of 'Danish Text'  

Frankfurter Rundschau, Germany: 'Grotesque Behavior' of Climate Powers

Financial Times Deutschland, Germany: Beijing Instead of Copenhagen  

Hurriyet, Turkey: History's Judgment of Our Generation Depends on Climate Summit

 

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[Posted By Worldmeets.US May 17, 2015, 11:39am]

 

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