Faith in Action

Posted: 26th November 2021

COP26 march.

With the excellent response from St Augustine’s Priory to the Giant Walk to School in support of COP26, Mrs McDermott here writes about her experience on the COP26 march on Saturday 6th November.

‘On Saturday morning, I joined the CAFOD group at St Mary’s Church, Moorfields for a prayer service before joining the COP26 march through London. The march was held alongside dozens of other demonstrations in countries such as Brazil, the US, Kenya, Turkey and Australia as part of a ‘Global Day of Action’. The purpose, to call for governments at the COP to agree steps to keep temperature rises below 1.5C, support countries on the frontline of the crisis and consign fossil fuels to history.

Our concern for the environment is rooted in Catholic Social Teaching: since the beginning humanity has been given the privilege of being stewards of creation. In the past this role has been seen as one of dominion, which has been misused and the planet has been abused. We must act now to stop the destruction of our Common Home.

Care for the environment is also an essential way for us to ensure that the Preferential Option for the Poor is at the centre of all we do. CAFOD Director, Christine Allen, reminds us of what, “Pope Francis highlights, we should look at the earth from the perspective of the poorest. Villagers in Bangladesh flooded out of their homes, farmers in Zimbabwe whose crops have failed, children in Peru choking on air pollution: they are not responsible for global warming but suffer the consequences. Unless we hear their voices and provide adequate financing for vulnerable communities, the promises made so far will be empty ones.”

Finally, not only should we be concerned with the Common Good now, but also for future generations. As Pope Francis wrote in Laudato Si, his encyclical letter to the world, “Each community can take from the bounty of the earth whatever it needs for subsistence, but it also has the duty to protect the earth and the ensure its fruitfulness for coming generations.”

Illustrations from some of Mrs McDermott’s tweets from the day.

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