St. John the Baptist Parish joins national climate presentation

Friday, Oct. 24, 2014
St. John the Baptist Parish joins national climate presentation + Enlarge
The Oct. 17 presentation was the first of three planned. IC photo/Laura Vallejo
By Laura Vallejo
Intermountain Catholic

DRAPER – To celebrate the Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi, Saint John the Baptist Parish joined hundreds of other parishes, schools and colleges in a program titled “From St. Francis to Pope Francis to you! Creating a Climate for Solidarity.”
This year marks the 35th anniversary of St. John Paul II naming St. Francis as the patron saint of those who promote ecology. In keeping with this, and Catholic teaching on climate change,  the Oct. 17 presentation at St. John the Baptist Parish was planned, said Bob Vorwald, a member of the parish’s Green Ministry. 
The presentation combined short video testimonials with group reflections.
“This program highlights the impact of climate change on the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people, and offers concrete ways that Catholic individuals and communities can respond,” Vorwald told those who attended.
Pope Francis has urged Catholics to care for creation and care for the poor as “a significant part of our Catholic witness: Let us protect Christ in our lives, so that we can protect others, so that we can protect creation.” Quoting this, Vorwald guided the prayer to St. Francis that formally opened the program, which was sponsored by the Catholic Climate Covenant, a national Catholic partnership organization whose members include, among others, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
The presentation highlighted several main points: respect for human life and dignity, prudence on behalf of the common good, priority for the poor and vulnerable, social and economic justice, care for creation and participation.
“Inevitably, this is about us and what people have done in solidarity for the poor and environmental issues,” said Vorwald.
The presentation was the first of a three-part series that the Catholic Climate Covenant has created. 
“The next one will be in April and the third one in October,” said Vorwald. “A central project of the covenant is the St. Francis pledge to care for creation and the poor by which Catholic families, organizations, parishes and others commit to pray, learn, assess, act and advocate for Catholic principles and priorities in climate change discussions and decisions especially the ones that affect the poor and vulnerable,” said Vorwald.
For information about the pledge, visit

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