Philippine nun: DiCaprio’s speech reflects churches’ concern on resources

MANILA, Philippines (CNS) — “Be like Leonardo DiCaprio.” Ucanews.com reported that was the call of Sister Aloha Vergara of the Handmaids of the House of God, who said DiCaprio’s speech at the Feb. 28 Academy Awards “reflects the people and the churches’ position on the protection of the environment.” The Hollywood actor said climate change…

On climate issue, Catholics urged to ‘feel pain of the planet, the poor’

MIAMI (CNS) — Pope Francis’ right-hand man on the environment and climate change issues urged Catholics attending a local academic conference to let Christian spirituality guide their thinking and actions toward preserving the full range of God’s creation. Cardinal Peter Turkson, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, spoke Feb. 19 in Miami…

Laudato Si’ study guide – Chapter 4: Integral Ecology

Pope Francis wrote his encyclical, “Laudato Si’” for “every person living on the planet” not only to read but also to “enter into dialogue with all people about our common home.” In an effort to keep the conversations going, The Visitor is publishing a six-part faith formation series in which guest writers help to “unpack”…

‘Faithful citizenship’ revisions reflect words of Popes Benedict, Francis

BALTIMORE (CNS) — Revisions in the U.S. bishops’ quadrennial document on political responsibility draw on the teachings of Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis and take into account developments in U.S. foreign and domestic policy over the past four years. The document, revised by a working group of bishops comprised of the chairmen of several…

If people love God, they must care for what he has made, says cardinal

COLUMBUS, Ohio (CNS) — The lead consultant on “Laudato Si’,” Pope Francis’ encyclical on the environment, said that although it’s a document of nearly 40,000 words, its message can be summed up in one sentence. “We cannot love God when we do not appreciate or care for what God has made,” Cardinal Peter Turkson said…

Protesters at New York gas storage plant arrested while reading encyclical

READING, N.Y. (CNS) — Accompanied by oversized replica of Pope Francis’ encyclical “Laudato Si’,” former Catholic seminarian Paul Flansburg took his place on the line with 18 others in a human blockade. Their goal Aug. 18 was to stop business as usual at a natural gas and liquefied petroleum gas storage facility operated by Houston-based…

Rural priest imparts wisdom, experience on ‘Laudato Si’’ panel

By Kristi Anderson The Visitor Before entering the priesthood, Father Joseph Backowski studied water resources management and soil science at the University of Minnesota in Crookston. Father Backowski’s parishes, St. Mary of the Presentation in Breckenridge and St. Thomas in Kent, in the Red River Valley rest in the heart of sugar beet country, where…

Iowans urged to ‘buckle down, get to work’ on environmental problems

DES MOINES, Iowa (CNS) — Iowa Catholic leaders, interfaith leaders, clean energy advocates and others encouraged Iowans to take action in light of Pope Francis’ historic encyclical on the environment, “Laudato Si’, on Care for Our Common Home.” Des Moines Bishop Richard E. Pates encouraged Catholic Iowans to take advantage of the state’s first-in-the-nation role…

What’s the dirt on ‘Laudato Si’ ’?

Local Catholics reflect on themes, messages in Pope Francis’ letter By Kristi Anderson The Visitor Now that the initial environmentally-safe dust has settled following the June 18 release of Pope Francis’ encyclical “Laudato Si’,” people around the globe have begun to weigh in on its contents. In his letter, Pope Francis asks for new dialogue…