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Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate  United States Province

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European Churches Call for a Green Economy September 12th, 2012

The Catholic Coalition on Climate Change reports has picked up news reports that changes to tackle climate change were discussed by over 90 participants from Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant churches from 22 countries at the 9th Assembly of the European Churches Environment Network (ECEN) this week.

Held at Elspeet in the Netherlands, the theme of ‘Eco-Justice, Growth and Hope’ concentrated on the tensions between the desire for conventional economic growth and the increasing ecological threats to Planet Earth . . . Delegates spoke of difficulties and struggles in all their countries; a combination of the effects of climate change, environmental destruction with loss of biodiversity and resources such as water, and the ongoing global economic crisis is challenging people and communities across our whole society. And churches are encouraged to be stronger advocates for creative change in the face of these growing concerns.

The article notes that [s]peakers referred to the need to move away from the current inequitable and unstable economic situation, towards a more just and sustainable economy. The report also notes that ECEN is supported by the Conference of European Churches and the European Catholic Bishops’ Conference, and its work is supported by the World Council of Churches and other partners.


The Migration of Our Plastic… May 25th, 2012

Plastic found in the gut of a dead albatross on Midway Island; Photo Credit: Chris Jordan

The MIDWAY media project is a powerful visual journey into the heart of a deeply symbolic environmental tragedy. On an island 2,000 miles from the nearest continent, tens of thousands of baby albatrosses lie dead on the ground, their bodies filled with plastic from the Pacific Garbage Patch. A team of film makers and researchers visiting the island over a period of several years has produced a stunning film that captures both the immensity of this tragedy—and our own complicity—head on. In this process, they have found “an unexpected route to a transformational experience of beauty, acceptance, and understanding.”

Watch a trailer for the film….

Take Action: Use less plastic, and recycle what you do use. Never toss bottles into or near storm gutters. And support local efforts to ban polystyrene containers and plastic bags.


Environment Sunday ~ June 3 May 4th, 2012

Thanks to Eco Congregation Ireland for this information. Please check out their website for guidance on taking your parish through a process of becoming environmentally aware and responsible.

Environment Sunday this year falls on June 3, two days before World Environment Day (June 5) and two weeks before the Earth Summit.

Is your church holding a special service or event to mark Environment Sunday? A walk/cycle to church Sunday? A nature walk? A litter pick? Or a work-party in the church grounds or locality?

The international Christian environmental organization, A Rocha, has produced materials for Environment Sunday in recent years. See http://en.arocha.org/uk/index.html

A Rocha chose the first Sunday in June, or the nearest Sunday to World Environment Day, for Environment Sunday because this time of year – early summer – is most suitable for outdoor events. It is easier to see and enjoy flowers, butterflies, birds and other wildlife at this time. Furthermore, UN World Environment Day  is June 5th.

The 2012 parish resource pack is on the topic of Trees and Forests.

 


Spring/Summer Issue of JPIC Report now available! April 26th, 2012

The Spring/Summer Issue of our bi-annual print newsletter is now available on-line. (Download the PDF…)

This issue includes articles on Global HIV/AIDS funding, a new organic farm at Oblate headquarters in Washington, the human reality at the US/Mexican border, shareholder advocacy in the financial sector, human trafficking and environmental issues: from biodiversity loss and climate change to OMI JPIC work in solidarity with Bangladeshi colleagues and new solar panels on an Oblate church in California.


Updates on Events and Resources from the JPIC Commission Office in Rome January 26th, 2012

The following is a list of useful upcoming JPIC events and resources:

A course on Catholic Social Teaching (in Spanish): A comprehensive written course on Catholic Social Teaching, prepared for University students, was written and published in Latin America. It can be downloaded at: http://www.kas.de/sopla/es/publications/29414/

JPIC Promoter’s Formation Course in the USA: An intensive week-long seminar for JPIC Congregation promoters takes place at Saint Mary’s Notre Dame, Indiana from June 3-10. The brochure is due out in February. For more information, go to http://www.holycrossjustice.org/JusticeCraft/JusticeCraft.asp

Click here to read more »


Catholic Health System Eliminates Styrofoam January 5th, 2012

Bon Secours St. Francis Health System in Greenville, South Carolina has completely eliminated its use of Styrofoam plates, cups, and bowls in cafeterias at both Greenville campuses as part of a 3-year-old, system-wide green initiative and as a way to be a model to the wider Greenville community.

Karen Schwartz, the hospital system’s vice president for facilities, says that the move was inspired by the fact that as a petroleum-based product, Styrofoam doesn’t decompose or go away over time in a landfill. It stays forever and it takes up space. If you throw it in the ocean, it floats and it can kill sea life. If you burn or incinerate it, the chemicals that were used in the manufacturing of it aerosolize and again has a negative impact on the environment…

“We really couldn’t find a redeeming quality other than the fact that it held stuff.” Schwartz added: “We are all responsible for caring for God’s creation and we are interdependent on one another. It is really short-sighted of me to think that my actions and behaviors don’t impact someone in Haiti, Peru, Africa or China – because they do.” (Story from The Greenville News, 12/30/2011)

We’d like to give a shout out to the Catholic Climate Covenant  for sharing this story in their Weekly  E-Update. For more information, and to sign up, visit their website at: http://catholicclimatecovenant.org/

Catholic Climate Covenant is a project of the Catholic Coalition on Climate Change.

 

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