Online Prayer Service – World Day of Prayer for Creation-Thursday, September 1

On September 1, Christians from around the world will be praying as part of Creation Day and the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation. If you are unable to join a service in your local community, you can join our prayer service online or through your phone. Representatives from Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox, and Episcopalian churches will guide us in a 30 minute service of prayer, silence, and reflection. There will also be a chance for participants to share their own prayer for creation and our brothers and sisters.   Check here for the details

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Have you been reflecting on ‘Laudatio Si’? HERE   Are you following the ratifications of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change?  HERE  Signatures without ratifications leave the agreement unfulfilled.  Sustainable Goal 13 is on Climate Action  ‘Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.’  Read more on this here

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DISOBEDIENCE

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(Met some friends at the film)

Last evening a 40 minute film was premiered in New York and will be launched today across the globe.  It is a new phase in the climate movement.  It is the story of four communities preparing to participate in Break Free from Fossil Fuel actions in May 2016.

Link to the film    You can access the film in different languages HERE

If you check out this link you can get access to a discussion guide that can help initiate discussion Click the tab Posters and More

This is a natural continuation of  COP 21 which was held in Paris last December and the signing of the Paris Agreement at United Nations headquarters on Friday April 22nd, 2016.

It could be part of your celebration of Laudato Si which was published one year ago.  Naomi Klein is also interviewed on this film.  Have you read her book  ‘This Changes Everything’?

 

 

 

 

Video clips on Trade Liberalization or Climate: we must choose

The Video clip is in  English and French

The Africa Europe Faith and Justice Network have published their December newsletter.  There is some good material if you are following up on COP 21 and some more video links

English     French

Don’t forget to link it with Laudato Si and the following from our Congregational Chapter Direction Statement: To recognize our interconnectedness with the whole of creation which obliges us “to protect our common home.”

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Access to the full document

COP 21 from the women’s perspective

Following two weeks of negotiations during the Conference of the Parties (COP21) in Paris, the 195 parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) adopted the Paris Agreement on 12 December 2015 (full text available here).
The Global Catholic Climate Movement
The Paris Agreement’s main aim is “Holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels” (binding), and countries further agreed “to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels, recognizing that this would significantly reduce the risks and impacts of climate change.” (Article 2)  The Agreement also includes the pledges to cut emissions and set the long-term goal to get off fossil fuels (although there is no clear timeline). Furthermore, the Agreement creates a 5-year Review Mechanism for countries to review their emissions reduction targets and set new, more ambitious cuts. However, there is no accountability mechanism for countries’ failure to comply to the Agreement.
Combating climate change and its impacts, which has important linkages with gender equality and human rights, is included in the SDGs (Goal 13). Unfortunately, despite strong efforts from women’s rights advocates, references to women’s and human rights were moved to non-binding parts in the final draft of the Paris Agreement. The weak references to gender include the following:
  • “Parties should, when taking action to address climate change, respect, promote and consider their respective obligations on human rights . . . as well as gender equality, empowerment of women,” (Introduction)
  • “Parties acknowledge that adaptation action should follow a country-driven, gender-responsive, participatory and fully transparent approach, taking into consideration vulnerable groups, communities and ecosystems,”(Article 7)
  • Capacity-building . . . should be an effective, iterative process that is participatory, cross-cutting and gender-responsive,” (Article 11)
  • Gender balance in the Committee established in the document to facilitate implementation and promote compliance (Article 15; see also paragraph 103 of decision)
Please see further articles and resources on COP21 and women working in climate justice:

Yolanda shares her experience from Paris

Sister Yolanda Sanchez is currently in Paris, attending the COP21 climate change conference.  Here’s her update from the first week of the conference, along with lots of pictures.  Many thanks to Yolanda for representing us all in Paris!

Hermana Yolanda Sánchez se encuentra actualmente en París, asistiendo a la conferencia delcambio climático COP21 . Aquí está su reporte desde la primera semana de la conferencia, junto con algunas fotos. ¡Muchas gracias a Yolanda por representarnos todos en París!

Sœur Yolanda Sanchez est actuellement à Paris, assister à la conférence sur le changementclimatique COP21.
Voici son rapport à partir de la première semaine de la conférence, ainsi que quelques photos. Un grand merci à Yolanda pour nous représenter à Paris!

COP 21

English Text

French Text

Spanish Text

COP 21: Climate change, change of the system and paradigms.

From November 30 to December 11, 2015, 195 countries are meeting at the Conference of the Parties (COP 21) having as their main objective to review the implementation of the United Nations Framework Convention On Climate Change

This is very important, but even more important to me because I am participating in the space called “Climate Generations” (this place gives civil society, NGOs and other participant a space to bring an alternative voice to this Summit). From this it is clear to see that there are many people with a deep commitment to climate change and to changing present paradigms regarding this.

What I lived in this first week of the COP 21? I have signed petitions, I have heard about good practices and alternative initiatives being carried out not only in the developing countries but also in developed countries to reduce the impact of climate change in large and small cities; I have shared with many people who have come from all over the planet -young, less young, religious, people of all confessions- all animated with the desire to share experiences, express a concern in front of the indifference of Governments with regard to climate change and its consequences. Brothers and sisters of indigenous people have also brought their voices and concerns for the destruction of the land that they have inhabited for many centuries.

I have also participated in prayer initiatives carried out, among them the Ecumenical prayer at the Cathedral of Notre Dame. With joy I see that churches have undertaken this COP 21 to also assume the challenges on climate change and its consequences, assuming the responsibility of taking care of “our common home”.

What I have perceived in this atmosphere of COP 21?

On the one hand there is a serious commitment of many people whoCOP 21 2 have become aware that must not only speak of climate change but also a change of system, of paradigms, of ways to consume, and of behaviors. Development must never mean destruction of nature and its resources.

Secondly, I see that the language of human rights appears in the text being discussed. It refers to respect, protection and promotion of human rights for everyone in all of the actions proposed for tackling climate change.

And what is coming after the COP 21? Although this Summit is a turning point and an opportunity to make concrete commitments this is only a part of the solution. Many communities on the planet are still being threatened by the increase in the sea level, deforestation, natural disasters, and pollution of water sources, and there are whole communities in a situation of great vulnerability who will be forced to migrate. Many multinational companies are responsible for the current crisis in which these peoples are living.

A serious and determined will by individual Governments at national level, with or without international agreement is needed to deal with all these situations in which real people are living. Someone said “we cannot wait to have an international agreement to start acting now and take action at the national level”.

Personally, I think that it is also time to engage much more in advocacy work, lobbying, pushing government policies at nationally and internationally level responding to the needs of the people. In this first week of COP 21 I met many sisters and brothers who are already actively engaged in this.COP 21 3

Finally I invite you to meditate, to deepen, and put into practice the teachings that Pope Francis brings us in the wonderful encyclical Laudato SI , it is a source of inspiration and guidance for all peoples of the planet. He invites us to act and to participate in the care of creation, accepting the challenge that he makes us in Chapter 6, number 203 and so on: Towards a new lifestyle – at all levels.

Thanks Yolanda for this write up.

 

United Nations conference on climate change COP 21

logo-cop21-enYou may be interested in this interactive website – Climate Change Conference in Paris.  It is in English and French.  Click here  You can Learn – get to know the issue, Act – with suggestions as to what to do, and Follow the conference day after day.

Read another viewpoint from The Guardian December 4th and check what your national papers are reporting.  Do look at the video in the middle of the article.

Global Sisters Report on Climate Summit.

The Global Sisters report that the Climate Summit has begun with high expectations – and concerns.  NGO representatives from New York attending the Conference share their thoughts.  Read more here

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Srs. Odile Coirier, Pat Daly and Margaret Mayce talk near entrance to Climate Generations space. (Elise D. Garcia)

Another interesting website is Democracy Now  There are some interesting interviews.  See an interview with Naoimi Klein dated October 30.  I recommended here book some time ago “This Changes Everything”.

IBON International Update from Climate Summit in Paris

IBON have published their second update on the Climate Summit in Paris.  The update is in both English and Spanish and can be accessed HERE. It is #7 and dated December 2.  The update referenced by me in my posting on November 30th is also available in Spanish Click here!  The website contains many other interesting items.

Have you checked out the COP 21 liveblog?   It gives almost hourly accounts of what is taking place.  It was launched on November 30th.  An interesting way to review the days proceedings.  The last entry for today December 2  is poet Kathy Jetnil Kijinerm, who comes from the Marshall Islands, reciting a few lines from her poem “2 Degrees”. Video

UN Climate Change Conference Paris 2015 (COP 21)

The UN Climate Change Conference opened in Paris today November 30th and will continue until December 11th, 2015.  Yolanda 3Yolanda Sanchez from GSIJP Office Geneva is representing us all in Paris.  She will attend events organized by NGOs and will share some of her experiences in due course.    Keep updated with the website

I am sure that many of you have seen on Facebook the photographs of 10,000 shoes that have been placed.  One photograph that I have taken from  Alex Andreou is this one entitled the ‘Paris shoe march.’  Shoes

A disturbing report of events on November 29th has been provided by IBON. See IBON report on Climate Justice.  Saturday and Sunday we witnessed marches all around the globe.   An estimated 785,000 people globally gathered for the BIGGEST Climate March in history! I attended the New York march.  Check the photos here for both marches   Some quick glimpses of New York March.

The Global Catholic Climate Movement

NY Climate March

Raging Grannies and their Daughters

More Reflections on ‘Laudato Si’

This is a follow up to the posting on October 15th where I posted the first 4 reflections on Lauddato Si.  They are prepared in both English and French.  The second set of 4 have been prepared.  These are done by African Europe Faith Justice Network  See French and English  The website is a great resource with a spirituality and action emanating from faith and justice.
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For ease of access here are the reflection for Sessions 5,6,7 and 8.  E for English E 5E 6E 7, and E 8; and F for French F 5F 6F7, and F 8

These refection are very helpful if you are following the Climate Conference that will be held in Paris at the end of the month.  E 5 invites us to look at nature with different eyes and recognise the unique beauty and dignity of each creature which, by its very existence, praises God and gives joy to humanity.

E 6 reflects on  Pope Francis’ development of a new and profound theology of creation which looks at human beings as part of nature and as God’s responsible co-workers in creation. There can be no well-grounded ecology without a sound anthropology.  E 7 notes that nobody has definite answers to the many open questions how to control climate change or how to shape a truly sustainable development for all.  Pope Francis in his Encyclical ‘Laudato Si’ does not offer final solutions to these huge problems. He rather invites all stake holders to enter into a transparent interdisciplinary dialogue and to search for ways out of the crisis leaving aside all particular group interests but focussing on the global common good.

E 8 reflection has reference to the Parish Climate Summit.   The numerous climate summits in the last 20 years have not succeeded to reach a binding agreement for all countries which defines ‘common and differentiated responsibilities’. Pope Francis sees the reason for this in a lack of ethics in international relations, the fight for national interests to the detriment of the global common good, the lack of effective international institutions and the dominance of the financial markets over politics. Will the Paris Climate Summit pick up the challenge and live up to its responsibility to future generations?

NCP Primer ebook front cover

 

A background to previous conferences can be followed in this Primer prepared by IBON.  Here is the direct link IBON Primer on a New Climate Protocol  There are 87 pages with 5 Chapters.  The topics are interesting and some of the jargon we hear and read in the media is explained.  The first Chapter reviews Climate Change the Long-term View.  Chapter 2 looks at the Rio Mandate and the Koyoto Protocol.  Chapter 3 is interesting creating awareness of False Climate Solutions.  Chapter 4 has a draft of the Paris Climate Treaty and the last chapter presents some Real Climate Solution.

 To conclude here is an article linking climate and peace authored by Michael T. Klare, a professor of peace and world security studies at Hampshire College.   ‘Why the Paris Climate Summit is also a Peace Conference’ Read more