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Exploiting nature 'sin' of our time – Pope

Published time: July 05, 2014 15:37
Pope Francis delivers a speech during a meeting with youth of the diocese on July 5, 2014 in Castelpetroso, southern Italy, as part of his one day visit in the Molise region. (AFP Photo / Andreas Solaro)

Pope Francis delivers a speech during a meeting with youth of the diocese on July 5, 2014 in Castelpetroso, southern Italy, as part of his one day visit in the Molise region. (AFP Photo / Andreas Solaro)

Pope Francis in an address to Italian students has called for people to respect nature and called the destruction of South America’s rainforests, as well as other environmental destruction, “our sin.”

The Argentine-born Pope was addressing a gathering of students, farmers and laid-off workers at the University of Molise in southern Italy.

“When I look at America, also my own homeland, so many forests, all cut, that have become land… that can no longer give life. This is our sin, exploiting the Earth and not allowing her to give us what she has within her,” the Pope said in an apparently off-the-cuff speech.

“This is one of the greatest challenges of our time: to convert ourselves to a type of development that knows how to respect creation,” he told the university meeting.

Since being elected in March 2013, Pope Francis has made numerous appeals to alleviate the plight of the world’s poor and to defend the environment. He is also writing an encyclical, a letter sent out to other churches, on mankind’s relationship with nature.

The rainforest in South America, as in other parts of the world, is in great danger. According to National Geographic, during the past 40 years, 20 percent of the Amazon rainforest has been cut down, more than in the entire previous 450 years since European colonizers arrived in the area.

Environmentalists fear that an additional 20 percent may be lost in the next two decades and if this happens, things will start to unravel quickly as the forests’ ecology will no longer be self-supporting.

At the moment, the Amazon still produces about half its own rainfall through the moisture the vegetation releases into the atmosphere, but if enough of the trees are chopped down, then coupled with droughts and wildfires, the remaining trees will dry out and die, leaving scrubland.

Comments (38)


Shawn Riddick 13.07.2014 16:24

Our scientists are forced to sign secrecy agreements. When I was a child God spoke to me and said He wanted the people of Earth to know He was deeply sorry there was so much evil here. God said He introduced evil into His Universe from a sister Universe and the evil spread like cancer. He was unable to stop it. He created Heaven and Holiness and separated Himself from His own creation. If you do not believe in God, you believe in the Universe. Our Universe has a name and consciousness, Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End. Your Universe needs your help. warningfromgod dot thank you for your support.


Shawn Riddick 13.07.2014 16:16

Pope Francis is 100% correct about torturing and destroying nature. Many Insects have higher consciousness: thoughts, joy, agony. Insecticides torture Trillions Trillions every day on earth. Farmers who use them will not enter Heaven. Our Mesosphere/outer atmosphere can be destroyed to the point of no return. Need air to breathe? Love radiation? I was asked to sign a secrecy agreement with a writ of order for my execution attached for violations. Please read warningfromgod dot if you want to survive. Thank you for your support.


Armando Rivera-Carretero 06.07.2014 15:31

Mr Pope. As head of an institution that claims to be the highest voice of morality and justice in the world, the divesting in favor of the poor would stop the Church from sinning and would set a worthy example. You could even start an unstoppable treand which will end the extreme missery and poverty of the People of God. Your example might even start a revolution. What worth would it have to the Church and the Vatican in the life to come, the enormous amount of wealth it has on this earth, Use it now to make economic and social justice where it counts.

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