Denying the science behind climate change is sinful and immoral, the head of the Episcopal Church told fellow worshippers this week.
Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, speaking at a live-streamed webcast event designed to spread awareness of climate change, said fellow Christians had a moral imperative from God.
Episcopal Bishop Schori told the Christian Science Monitor that God gave the earth to mankind to steward and protect, not destroy.
Schori told the Huffington Post that denying the science of climate change was the same as turning our backs on the gift of knowledge.
“We are making war on the integrity of this planet. We were planted in this garden to care for it, literally to have dominion over its creatures. Dominion means caring for our island home.”
As the head of the American Episcopalian Church, the religious home of about two million worshippers, Bishop Schori said she hopes to influence others to help stop climate change.
The webcast, dubbed Climate Change Crisis by the Episcopalian Church, encouraged members to contact their elected representatives and provided instructions on how members could lower their carbon footprint.
The webcast kicked off 30 days of action that encourages Episcopal Church members to take action on climate change and educate their fellow humans. It culminates in the Earth Day events of April 22.
Episcopal Bishop Schori joins a growing list of religious leaders who support the science behind climate change, including Pope Francis, who in December of 2014 encouraged all Catholics to take a moral stand on the issue, according to the Guardian.
“The monopolising of lands, deforestation, the appropriation of water, inadequate agro-toxics are some of the evils that tear man from the land of his birth. Climate change, the loss of biodiversity and deforestation are already showing their devastating effects in the great cataclysms we witness.”
Bishop Marcelo Sorondo, chancellor of the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Sciences, told the Guardian that Pope Francis is trying to actively influence this year’s UN talks on climate change.
The pope, according to the Inquisitr, said that Christians who don’t care about the environment don’t care about God’s creation.
Meanwhile, Episcopal Bishop Schori’s statements this week supporting the science behind climate change follows through with the Episcopal Church’s stewardship priorities.
In 1986, the church created the Episcopal Ecological Network to address environmental issues, and in 2012 partnered with Green Faith to make churches more environmentally friendly.
Bishop Schori told the Huffington Post this week that ignoring climate change because of political motivation was sinful.
“We are meant to love God and what God has created and to love our neighbors as ourselves. Jesus insists that those who will enjoy abundant life are those who care for all neighbors, especially the ‘least of these’, the hungry and thirsty, the imprisoned and sick, and that must include all the species that God has nurtured on this planet.”