2021-09-13 GENERAL HOUSE

Sustainable Development Goals 13: Climate Action

In previous articles we have already talked about the Sustainable Development Goals, as the set of objectives chosen by the member countries of the United Nations as a commitment to work towards a better world. Goals that aim to reduce inequalities, help the development of the most disadvantaged, take care of our planet… Goals that are not watertight compartments, but are related to each other.

On this occasion, through this article, we wish, as Marists of Champagnat, to join in the efforts of thousands of people and of the governments of many countries in the achievement of this objective that we present here. Climate change affects all countries, in different ways, but all of them.

The last General Chapter, held in 2017, commits us to care for the planet, which means caring for the environment and taking courageous action to combat climate change and its effects. We wish to abandon the culture of egos and promote ecosystems. We wish to commit ourselves to care for our common home (calls 3 and 5).

What can we do from our concrete situation? Search creatively. Investing in renewable energies, promoting responsible consumption, reducing or eliminating the use of plastics, caring for our use of water and electricity, accompanying those who are most in need… In many parts of the Institute, steps have already begun to be taken in this direction (local and provincial initiatives, regional or institutional plans, collaboration with other organisations and agents of change).

Education, the main mission of the Marists of Champagnat, can become a powerful instrument for the transformation of present and future generations. We can be engines of change in the midst of our societies. Formation and awareness plans in our families, communities, and educational works. Action plans, at all levels, that include small concrete actions and medium to long term action strategies. Advocacy plans with other civil society actors and groups.

This call is to each of us, regardless of age, nationality or ability, as the Message of the 22nd General Chapter tells us. Individually and as an Institute we can and must work together for a better world, to reverse and mitigate climate change and its consequences. Yes, this means stepping out of our comfort zone. And yes, it means living based on “an integral ecology”.

Pope Francis, in his encyclical Laudato Si (25), reminds us that “climate change is a global problem with serious environmental, social and economic dimensions… and poses one of the major challenges facing humanity today”. As Marists of Champagnat, as Christians, as human beings, individually and as an institution, we wish to contribute our life and mission towards a better world.

Many initiatives are being implemented. This is the way. Awareness and action. The cry of the earth and the cry of the poor cannot wait.


Br. Angel Diego – Director of the Secretariaty of Solidarity


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