Serving Appalachia; climate change quick reference; two great videos
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Serving the Lost and Forgotten in Appalachia

“Indigenous prophecy meets scientific prediction. What we have known and believed, you also now know: The Earth is out of balance. The plants are disappearing, the animals are dying, and the very weather – rain, wind, fire itself – reacts against the actions of the human being. For the future of the children, for the health of our Mother Earth, Father Sky, and the rest of Creation, we call upon the people of the world to hold your leaders accountable.”
Circles of Wisdom: Native Peoples/Native Homelands Climate Change Workshop held in Albuquerque, New Mexico, November 1998

Fr. Neil Pezzulo, First Vice President of the Glenmary Home Missioners is featured in a recent Conference of Major Superiors of Men (CMSM) series exploring Justice and Peace from the perspective of the religious working with those most affected by these issues. Neil works in the Appalachian region of the United States, particularly in the coal fields of Eastern Kentucky, where the battle lines over energy, jobs, and environmental justice intersect. Nationally, much of the current conversation has been around a “just transition” from a fossil fuel-based economy to an economy that can create new jobs in renewable energy. Neil feels strongly that men and women religious must work together with local environmental groups where young leaders and new energy are rapidly emerging.

Background for some of the issues that Fr. Neil works with:

Fracking Fumes: Air Pollution from Hydraulic Fracturing Threatens Public Health and Communities

The experiment that keeps Appalachia poor, sick, and stuck on coal

Indigenous Principles of Just Transition

Opinion: McConnell wildly out of step with Kentucky and US on climate change

Credit:  CMSM.  Photo:  Stream destroyed from mountaintop removal mining.

Do you know these Women Guardians of the Planet?

This "Mighty Girl"  blog post might seem an odd source for this Network, but you might not be familiar with these women's (and others') contributions, though we all should be.  These are the shoulders we stand on with our work for environmental justice.

Learn more here

Climate Change Quick Reference

The Climate Change Index (CCI) is a resource for “fast facts” and talking points about climate change, its causes, its impacts and climate solutions. The facts are aggregated from publicly available and linked sources such as news articles and government websites.  There are categories of bullet-point facts for:  Public Health Impacts, Clean Energy Economy, Public Opinion Research, Extreme Weather Impacts, Fossil Fuel Subsidies, Infrastructure, Agriculture, and Economic Effects.  The CCI also has figures broken out for U.S. states North Carolina, Iowa, Colorado and Arizona.  See the Index here.

Passionist Solidarity Networks - Sign on letter

On May 2, for the first time in 10 years, the U.S. House of Representatives acted to combat climate change by passing H.R. 9, the Climate Action Now Act.

The Passionist Solidarity Network signed onto a faith network support letter for the passage of this legislation. The letter opened, "As religious organizations representing a variety of faith traditions, we ask that you support H.R. 9, the Climate Action Now Act, legislation that is intended to keep the United States in the Paris Agreement, an international agreement aimed at curbing climate change, and to require the Administration to assemble a plan to meet our commitments under the agreement." 

This legislation would require the United States to remain in the Paris climate agreement, which President Donald Trump has vowed to leave, and would keep the country on track to achieve benchmarks set by the Paris accord. It would ensure that the United States meets its international commitment to cut carbon emissions by at least 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025.

Image: The Atlantic

Videos

On the Road with Thomas Merton

A Film by Jeremy Seifert, Essay by Fred Bahnson.

In May 1968, Christian mystic Thomas Merton undertook a pilgrimage to the American West. The filmmaker and writer retraced the monk’s journey across the landscape. Amid stunning backdrops of ocean, redwood, and canyon, the film features the faces and voices of people Merton encountered. The essay offers a more intimate meditation on Merton’s life and the relevance of the spiritual journey today.  
Read and watch here
 

Energy to Change

"Just as great as the challenge of climate change is human ingenuity and motivation to change our way of lives."

Energy to Change, presented in both narrative and video format, follows 6 stories around the world, as different communities and individuals commit to changing their source and use of energy. Climate change is a challenge like humanity has never faced before. We use energy in every aspect of our lives, from our greatest needs to survive, like keeping medicine cool, to our greatest pleasures, like keeping ice cream cool. Energy is crucial to our work and our homes. Still, while some people are using a lot more energy than they need, others don’t have access to energy at all. Though we use energy every day, for most of us, the source of energy remains invisible, and we have to find the source and change it to renewable energy before it’s too late.  Read and view the individual stories here or watch the 30 minute video below.
Energy to Change

Linking Justice and Peace in the Lectionary

Justice and peace homily resources are available from the Conference of Major Superiors of Men (CMSM) and other religious communities. The Passionist Solidarity Network collaborates with other community justice and peace offices and we would love to see other homily resources coming from the Passionist charism. Contact the Passionist Solidarity Network office if you would like to contribute.  

Additional homily resources from the Ignatian Solidarity Network

The Holy Cross Passionist website features wonderful daily scripture reflections from the Passionist Family.  Three regular contributors are members of the Passionist Solidarity Network Advisory Board. 

The Catholic Climate Covenant has homily helps incorporating Laudato Si’ as well as weekly tip bulletin inserts (including Spanish).  
 
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