News

Bishop James Jones to address Vatican conference on climate change

24/04/2007

Press Release issued by the Diocese of Liverpool and the Archdiocese of Liverpool

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

The Right Reverend James Jones, Bishop of Liverpool, is to travel to the Vatican this week to address a major conference on ‘Climate Change and Development’ at the invitation of Cardinal Renato Martino, President of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace. The Conference which takes place on Thursday 26 April and Friday 27 April will also offer a sign of the strength of ecumenical relations in the City of Liverpool. As Bishop James is to give his address on Friday afternoon on the subject of ‘Climate Change and Ecumenical Collaboration’ it is a happy coincidence that the Archbishop of Liverpool, the Most Reverend Patrick Kelly will be attending the conference as a delegate in place of Bishop Declan Lang of Clifton who is unable to attend. The Archbishop previously held responsibility for environmental matters in the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales.

The United Kingdom is well represented as the Rt Hon David Miliband, Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs is also due to address the meeting on Thursday morning on the subject of ‘The reality of climate change in the world today’.

Bishop James says of the visit:

‘It is of the greatest significance that the Pontifical Council is convening such a Conference on climate change. The influence will be far reaching around the world.

‘I am honoured to be invited to address the conference and will be speaking about the ecumenical initiatives in climate change that we have developed in the Diocese of Liverpool, especially the Academy of St Francis of Assisi which is jointly sponsored by the Catholic Archdiocese and ourselves and is the only Academy to take the environment as its specialism. I will also mention Operation Eden which is a multi faith initiative engaging faith communities in the transformation of their local environment.

‘In addition I will be sharing some of the theological research that I began in my book “Jesus and the Earth”.

‘I will be accompanied by my colleague Archbishop Patrick Kelly who promises to give me his Whistle Stop Tour of the Vatican and Rome!’

Archbishop Patrick says:

‘Over the years, with Bishops from across Europe, I have attended conferences about climate change. I am convinced this issue may not be avoided by any of us. I am also convinced that we must work with each other. That is why it is a blessing that it has worked out that Bishop James Jones and I will both be in Rome for this international conference. The programme is very tight, but I will do my best to share with Bishop James some of that wonderful city which was my home for nine years.’

The Conference is divided into four distinct areas of discussion: on Thursday delegates will look at ‘Climate Change: An historic Approach’ and ‘Climate Change and Sustainable Development’. While on Friday they will discuss: ‘Climate Change and Political Responsibilities’ and ‘Climate Change and Pastoral Tasks’. Speakers at the gathering will come from countries throughout the world including: France, Germany, Italy, Guyana, USA, Argentina, Poland and Australia.

Ends

24 April 2007

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