Lutheran World Relief Finds Climate Solution in Pope Francis’ US Visit

Ambassador Daniel Speckhard, President and CEO of Lutheran World Relief knows all too well the importance of climate action on the part of Congress. Which is why Speckhard adamantly supports Pope Francis' initiative to share his moral call to climate action this week in Washington, D.C. Over the years,  Lutheran World Relief has seen first had the devastating impact that climate change is having on the world's most vulnerable communities. 

Speckhard, who will be joining the Coming Together in Faith and Climate Discussion this Friday, recognizes the importance of interfaith work in combating the impact of climate change. And, despite the devastation organizations such as Lutheran World Relief have seen, Speckhard maintains that faith leaders may still provide climate solutions. Speckhard shared in a recent article for The Hill, "May we rise to this challenge and act boldly to protect not only millions of poor, but our future and the future of our children."

Instability and assault on the poor require us to respond

Amb. Daniel Speckhard | The Hill

In his clarion call to action on climate change, Pope Francis echoes the statements and sentiments of many religious leaders and church bodies.

The Orthodox Christian churches have long spoken about environmental issues in moral terms, so much so that Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew has been called the “Green Patriarch.” Last year, the Lutheran World Federation Council adopted a Statement on Climate Justice that called on member churches to adopt eco-friendly practices with the aim of becoming carbon-neutral by 2050. The National Council of Churches, which represents 37 Christian denominations, passed a resolution urging action on global warming nearly a decade ago.  For Pope Francis, the urgent need to remedy climate change is a moral imperative.

As a faith-based organization that responds to disasters and works to lift people out of extreme poverty, we at Lutheran World Relief see first-hand that climate change is not a theoretical concept confined to science labs and political debates, but is affecting millions of people.  It’s time for the U.S. Congress to get on board. Harm caused by rising temperatures is being borne disproportionately by poor and vulnerable, who—despite their enormous resilience in the face of adversity—have the fewest resources to adapt to these changes.

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