Eco Catholic

Founder of WorldWatch Institute a modern-day ecological prophet


More than 150 years ago, Native American Chief Seattle in Puget Sound allegedly warned humans of the dire consequences awaiting them if they mistreated the land, the air, the water and one another:

"Man did not weave the web of life; he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself."

Persistent U.S.-to-Vatican GMO advocacy reflects moral deafness


I have been trying for three years to secure a meeting with the U.S. ambassador to the Holy See in Rome. Last year, I got close and met with the political officer, Kim Pendleton. She was brand new and questioned me about food security issues.

This year, I succeeded in securing a meeting with Ambassador Miguel Diaz. I was happy to meet with him because he taught at Saint John's University in Collegeville, Minn., and I had been to the campus many times in the past and knew several professors quite well.

World hunger and the Obama administration's priorities


I recently attended in Rome the annual two-week meetings of the Committee on World Food Security (Oct. 8-22) at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

The Committee on World Food Security was set up in 1974 as an intergovernmental body to serve as a forum for review of food security policies, and in 2009, underwent a reform process to ensure that the voices of other stakeholders were heard in the global debate on food security and nutrition.

Pope says farm co-ops can protect values while feeding people


Farm co-ops can provide the world with an "alternative vision" to government or international agriculture policies that place too much emphasis on profits, protecting certain markets or employing new technology that could prove dangerous, Pope Benedict XVI said.

The pope made his comments in a message marking Tuesday's celebration of World Food Day, a commemoration sponsored by the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization to highlight the global fight against hunger and the need to help farmers and farm workers.

Church's new doctor inspires woman's voice


Devi Mathieu was traveling in Minnesota on Sunday, the day Pope Benedict XVI proclaimed Hildegard of Bingen as a doctor of the church.

Had she been at home in Sebastopol, Calif., Mathieu would have mixed up a batch of cinnamon-nutmeg cookies based on one of Hildegard's own recipes. Then she would have organized a special gathering of friends to celebrate the music of her favorite saint, an earth mystic, Benedictine abbess, wisdom teacher, "Sybil of the Rhine," author, healer and spiritual conscience for the patriarchy of her time.

St. Francis feast film screenings bring climate refugees to light


Across the country, churches, schools and communities celebrated Oct. 4 the feast of the patron saint of animals and the environment – Francis of Assisi – in a multitude of ways.

Many attended the traditional blessing of animals and pets; some made an effort to get outside to enjoy and experience nature as Francis did; still others honored his vow of poverty by serving the homeless.

Not surprisingly, each of these celebrations of the spirit of St. Francis was held in the days surrounding the feast day at the University of St. Francis, in Joliet, Ill.

Xavier University's focus on sustainability impacts students, environment


Author's note: This is the second story highlighting two Midwestern Catholic schools and their ongoing immersion in sustainability. On Sept. 18, Eco Catholic featured Lewis University, a De La Salle Christian Brothers school near Chicago. Today's column focuses on Xavier in Cincinnati, the sixth-oldest Catholic university in the country.

Earth group: silence on climate change a form of partisanship


The following is commentary from the Earth Healing Team, an organization that provides "a Daily Reflection on pertinent subjects." You can learn more about the Earth Healing Team at

Silence is a form of partisanship

In this watershed year, 2012, many of us citizens who strive to be nonpartisan are forced into a dilemma: To remain silent is to remain partisan.

We confide to our European counterparts that this year resembles Germany at the rise of Nazism in 1933. Today, with the rise of militant materialism deliberately following the selfish and atheistic principles of Ayn Rand, one political party had been taken over by Big Energy merchants of doubt and confusion.

This group, with arrogance stemming from millions and billions of dollars of under-taxed bank accounts here and abroad, seeks to buy this national election, just as it has bought the recent primary.

These arrogant powerbrokers have partisanized a national unified environmental stance that since the First Earth Day has, for the greater part, stood beyond politics.


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In This Issue

February 10-23, 2017