Bishops’ Council for Justice & Peace stands in solidarity with young people on climate action

19 Sep 2019

“My key message today is: wherever we call home it is incumbent on all of us to live responsibly, and in a sustainable way, always thinking of our neighbour” – Bishop Alan McGuckian SJ

Tomorrow, Friday 20 September, representatives of the Council for Justice and Peace of the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference will take to the streets to stand in solidarity with young people at the Global Climate Strike. 

Young people across Ireland, and the world, will lead the protest demanding action on climate change.  This follows similar action in March involving 1.6 million people globally.  The aim of tomorrow’s strike is to make it the largest climate mobilisation in history.

Bishop Alan McGuckian SJ, Chair of the Bishops’ Council for Justice and Peace, said, “I support this mobilisation of young people and all those with a love for the environment to actively highlight the vulnerability of our fragile ecosystem.  I applaud their example of leadership in order to protect our future generations.

“In his 2015 encyclical letter Laudato Si’: On Care for Our Common Home, Pope Francis pointed out that caring for this beautiful planet, which we share together, is a moral duty in its own right.  The Pope affirmed that:

‘Many things have to change course, but it is we human beings above all who need to change.  We lack an awareness of our common origin, of our mutual belonging, and of a future to be shared with everyone.  This basic awareness would enable the development of new convictions, attitudes and forms of life.  A great cultural, spiritual and educational challenge stands before us, and it will demand that we set out on the long path of renewal’.”

Bishop McGuckian continued, “Young people have been at the forefront of driving this renewal and the Council for Justice and Peace wish to stand with them in calling for a radical ecological conversion.  We also wish to raise our voices for our sisters and brothers in the poorest parts of our world, who are already feeling the devastating effects of climate change.  A grave injustice of climate degradation is that those who contributed least to the problem, will be affected most.

“As Pope Francis prepares for his Special Assembly of the Synod of Bishops of the Amazon Basin next month on the theme ‘New Paths for the Church and for an Integral Ecology’, my key message today is: wherever we call home it is incumbent on all of us to live responsibly, and in a sustainable way, always thinking of our neighbour.”


Notes for Editors:

  • The role of the Council for Justice & Peace is to support the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference in promoting the social teaching of the Church and to advise on issues of social concern, both nationally and internationally.  Members of the council are: Bishop Alan McGuckian SJ (chair), Bishop Kevin Doran, Father Joe McDonald, Sister Sheila Curran, Sister Geraldine Henry, Reverend Michael Giblin, Ms Caoimhe de Barra, Ms Concepta de Brún, Ms Anne Cawley, Ms Ciara Murphy, Professor John Sweeney, Mr Gerard Forde, Mr Martin Long.
  • Laudato Si’ is Pope Francis’ best-selling encyclical letter on care for our common home which was published on 18 June 2015.  In the encyclical, Pope Francis posed the question: “What kind of a world do we want to leave to those who come after us, to children who are now growing up?”  It is available from Veritas bookshops and                                       

For media contact: Catholic Communications Office Maynooth: Martin Long +353 (0) 86 172 7678 and Brenda Drumm +353 (0) 87 310 4444.