Hong Kong - As we approach the conclusion of the United Nations’ COP27 on climate change in Sharm El-Sheik, Egypt, (6-17, November) and anticipate the start of the UN’s COP15 on biodiversity in Montreal, Canada, (7-19, December), Columban missionaries have released a message to lift up the voices that we hear every day in different parts of the world that experience the traumatic realities of climate injustice and biodiversity collapse.
“In calling global national leaders to account, we must also recognize and lament for the ways in which our lifestyles and institutional policies as Columbans fail to contribute to the well-being of the planet," said Fr. Tim Mulroy, Superior General for the Missionary Society of St. Columban. "We remain committed, however imperfect, to our on-going personal and communal ecological conversion.”
The Society's message highlights heatwaves and flooding in Pakistan and extrajudicial killing and red-tagging of community leaders in the Philippines, among other stories.
"There can be no Bio Diversity if there is no relationship," said Tevita Naikasowalu, the Columban Coordinator for Justice, Peace, and Ecology in Fiji and an indigenous Fijian. "There can be no trees without the land, no fish without the ocean because there has to be a relationship that connects this Web of Life. We cannot be without the other and what is good for them is also good for us and if harm is done to them, it is also done to us."
As part of an interfaith delegation, Columbans will be going to Montreal to bring the spiritual messages of hope, respect, justice, and peace to COP15.
You can read the full message here.
About the Missionary Society of St. Columban
The Missionary Society of St. Columban is a Catholic society of priests and lay people who live in solidarity with those who are made poor and marginalized, including the wounded earth, in 17 countries around the world. We put this experience into dialogue with Scripture, Catholic Social Teaching, and science, and this has compelled us to find ways to restore our relationships with God’s creation. We believe that ethical behavior must no longer be confined to our relationship with God and other human beings, but must include all of creation too.
For More Information
Contact: Amy Echeverria, International Coordinator for Justice, Peace, and Ecology