Dear friends, brothers and sisters,
Distinguished organizers and participants of this important Interfaith Forum on Environmental Protection,
We are delighted to convey this message in order to assure you that we join you in prayer as you recognize the support of the world's religions in addressing climate change and affirming the protection of God's creation.
As religious leaders, all of us share an immense - and indeed a sacred vocation - responsibility to hold nations and corporations, but also communities and individuals accountable for the way we are treating our planet.
There can be no reason or excuse for indifference or inaction. Today, all of us are well aware of the intimate and inseparable connections of the ecological crisis to the global problems of poverty, migration and unrest.
How, then, can any nation decline the welfare of its citizens? Or how can any industry defend the exploitation of its consumers? And how can any person-of-good-will doubt the ethical implications of his or her lifestyle?
Dear friends, let us remind our leaders of the vital importance and urgency of implementing the Paris Agreement. Let us remind our nations that the earth is not a possession but a partner on our journey toward peace and prosperity.
Above all, let us remind everyone that God's creation is not a commodity but rather a gift that we are called to sustain and share with the most vulnerable and marginalized as well as to safeguard for the sake of our children.
May God bless you all in your deliberations and decisions.