It's as crucial a time as any in the fight against the climate crisis. With the climate provisions in the U.S. reconciliation package under threat and the global COP26 climate summit just around the corner, all eyes are on lawmakers who, in this moment, possess the power to either take a great step toward a habitable and thriving future or, lamentably, to send humanity further down a path toward climate chaos.
Recent findings from Cause and Social Influence's 2021 study Influencing Young America to Act found that, of those U.S. Americans ages 18-30 who are not active on climate change, many lack trust in their power to make change as individuals. It's a relatable feeling on an issue as hulking and complex as the ecological crisis, at a time when U.S. Americans' trust in government and other institutions is on the decline.
However, in my ten and a half months serving as Director of Youth and Young Adult Mobilization, I've become increasingly convicted of one thing in particular. To borrow the words of Cardinal Blase Cupich in a keynote address on the U.S. Church's response to the climate crisis, "You have much more power than you think, young people." It is truly an opportune time for young people in the Catholic sphere to step into our power and call our communities and leaders to action on climate justice and integral ecology.
The Earth does not benefit when we embrace a sense of our own powerlessness, relatable as such a stance may be. Frontline communities do not benefit. We ourselves do not benefit. The only ones who do benefit from such a stance, it would seem, are those who are already profiting off of the climate crisis—and even those benefits are short-lived and superficial, in the grand scheme of things. In this month's newsletter, read up on how you can step into your power with Catholic Climate Covenant by taking action at this important time.
Director of Youth and Young Adult Mobilization, Catholic Climate Covenant
Local Highlight: Youth Organizing with St. Monica Green Team
On Saturday, October 2, the St. Monica Green Team hosted 50 middle and high school students who were passionate about environmental activism in their communities for a Youth Climate Summit: "Our Actions, Our Earth, Our Home." Organizers and speakers provided them with the resources to live more sustainably and sparked meaningful conversations about what it means to be an environmental advocate. Students left the summit with plans of action and a greater understanding of the intersectionality of environmentalism and faith. In total, the summit hosted 20 schools across Greater Los Angeles—from St. John Eudes in Chatsworth to St. Jerome in Inglewood, and from St. Monica in Santa Monica to Loyola in Downtown Los Angeles.
We are always looking for stories of young people serving as protagonists in the fight for a habitable and thriving planet. Are you engaging young people creatively around climate justice and integral ecology? Send us your story at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Eco-Spiritual Advent Retreat Series
Join Nicholas Collura, organizer with EcoPhilly and member of the Youth and Young Adult Mobilization community, for The Waiting Earth: An Eco-Spiritual Advent Retreat Series. This series of four talks will explore connections between traditional Advent themes and eco-spiritual concepts, through which this seemingly idle season of winter cold and spiritual waiting can become the nourishing ground for a greater reverence for, and connectedness to, the earth and the Incarnate One.
On a Mission Podcast Feature
Hear from Anna Robertson, Director of Youth and Young Adult Mobilization at Catholic Climate Covenant, share about credible hope in the climate crisis, what we can say 'yes' to, and more on Episode 32 of On a Mission podcast.
Meet the new Interns for YYA Mobilization!
We are so excited to welcome Desiré Findlay and Katie Gozum to the Youth and Young Adult Mobilization team!
Desiré brings a background in education, recruitment, public speaking, and writing to continue learning, teaching, and inspiring to her work at the Covenant. She is excited to work to bridge Catholic Social Teaching and creation care, drawing upon her own background as someone who was born in Mississippi and raised in New Mexico; who spent twelve years with the Felician Sisters of North America; and who has had opportunities to travel to places like Haiti, Panama, Italy, Mexico, Poland, Canada, and over 20 U.S. states
Prior to her work at the Covenant, Katie has volunteered with Laudato Si' Movement and served as an intern with Laudato Si' Ministries of the Diocese of Joliet. She is inspired in her creation care work by one of her favorite lines in Laudato Si': "By developing our individual, God-given capacities, an ecological conversion can inspire us to greater creativity and enthusiasm in resolving the world's problems and in offering ourselves to God" as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable."
Welcome, Katie and Desiré!
Take action with Catholic Climate Covenant!
- Urge Congress to act on climate through reconciliation. Though the path of the reconciliation package has obstacles, your support for climate action and environmental justice can resound. It's time for your U.S. senators and representative to hear of your support grounded in our Catholic faith. Take action today by sending a message to your legislator with just a few clicks.
- Sign the Catholic Climate Action Petition. You can also join your voice with thousands of individuals signing the climate action petition across the U.S. Catholic community as a faith-filled appeal to President Biden and the U.S. Congress, to work beyond partisanship and create climate solutions to care for present and future generations and our common home. Sign the petition today!
- Ask your church leaders to sign the Climate Action Letter for Catholic Institutions. Finally, we invite your institution to join hundreds of others across the country to send a faith-filled letter from the U.S. Catholic community to President Biden and the U.S. Congress, to work beyond partisanship and create climate solutions that will build a better future for present and future generations and our common home. Learn more about the letter.
Skill up with Catholic Climate Covenant
Season of Creation Training: How to Engage Our Church Leaders for Climate Action
In this training you will learn more about the Climate Action Letter for Catholic Institutions (open to Catholic institutions, organizations, religious communities to sign,) and you will learn step by step how you can faithfully and positively engage your bishop and other leaders to spark bold creation care and climate action. You will walk away with key skills, simple engagement resources and handouts.
Laudato Si’ Action Platform: How U.S. Catholics Can Participate
In this webinar the U.S. Laudato Si' Action Platform (LSAP) leaders for Parishes and Dioceses, Religious Orders, and Colleges and Universities walk you through the latest information on the LSAP launch, how your community can get started with the LSAP and the seven-year journey to sustainability, what each sector is doing in the U.S., and where you can find sector specific information/resources.
Partners for Creation Care: Catholic Climate Covenant and Laudato Si' Movement
In this webinar, Catholic Climate Covenant and Laudato Si' Movement team up to offer an insider's look into how our two Catholic groups work together and how you can engage with us to advance care for creation in our Church, our nation, and our world!
A new tool for sharing your events
Are you planning an event or initiative related to climate justice or integral ecology? The God's Plan(et) event board was created to support efforts across the U.S. Catholic community to mobilize around the Laudato Si' Action Platform. Learn more about the Action Platform at We're All Part of God's Plan(et) and submit your upcoming climate or integral ecology event to the event board.
Save the date!
November 30, 2021 is Giving Tuesday!
Please mark your calendar for our End of the Year Campaign, starting with Giving Tuesday on November 30 and our year-end fundraising drive throughout the month of December. Giving Tuesday is a global celebration of the goodness in the world. It is day when people come together in the spirit of caring for others and our year-end fundraising drive continues that spirit throughout the holiday season in support of our common home.
Be on the lookout for more information about Giving Tuesday, our End of the Year Campaign and how your support can make an impact with your tax-deductible contribution. Together we can ensure the safety of our common home for generations to come!
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