The Earth — "our common home," as Pope Francis described it in his encyclical Laudato Si' — is undergoing immense change. Each day, the impacts of climate change become more evident, while scientific studies indicate mere decades remain to limit global warming to avert the most serious consequences that come with it.
"Our Common Home" is a special NCR reporting series that through people, places and issues explores the role of faith and religion in responding to climate change, which the pope has called a matter of moral urgency and "one of the principal challenges facing humanity in our day."
"The urgent challenge to protect our common home," Francis wrote in his encyclical, "includes a concern to bring the whole human family together to seek a sustainable and integral development, for we know that things can change."
Our Common Home: Co-sponsored by the Catholic Climate Covenant and Creighton University, the June conference on climate action aimed to integrate Laudato Si' and its messages on creation care more deeply into the daily experience of Catholics in America. In a sense, to find ways to turn the big ideas into a more widespread reality.
The passenger to my right asked what was bringing me to Nebraska. "A conference about climate change," I told him, an answer that prompted a series of observations on his part that suggested recognition that something big is happening but uncertainty about the extent of the problem.
Immaculate Conception Catholic Church is the first parish to complete a solar project with Catholic Energies, a program aimed at helping church organizations implement energy efficiency projects at no cost to the institution.
Our Common Home: In their 19-page pastoral statement, the bishops called on parents, teachers and catechists to "create an environmental consciousness within all Catholic families" and challenged public officials and business leaders to strengthen water systems and pursue carbon emission reductions . "It is our hope that this pastoral statement will inspire creative, life-giving responses here in California," they wrote.