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Religions should work together to repair climate

I share J. Stephen Cleghorn's hope that the third anniversary of the pope's encyclical teaching on ecology, Laudato Si', will inspire reflection here in Maryland about how we are called to respond to the climate crisis.

The pope addresses his teaching to all people on earth, and this Jewish reader can recommend the power of the document's intimate and relatable teachings about the "ecological conversion" we must undergo to restore a right relationship with each other and with the natural world.

The pope's message reached many open hearts here in Maryland. In my work with congregations through Interfaith Power & Light, I have seen a powerful coming together of diverse faith communities to advocate for the Clean Energy Jobs Act, an effort to both expand and strengthen Maryland's Renewable Portfolio Standard. Already, over 130 religious groups have signed onto a resolution in support of the measure, including most of the major Christian denominations in our state. This October 5-7, many of these faith communities will be raising up climate justice in their services during a statewide "Climate in the Pulpits" weekend.

We would warmly welcome not only the Maryland Catholic Conference, but also the Baltimore Jewish Council and other faith-rooted advocates in Annapolis, to heed the voices of their faithful members back home in the pews, who are living out the encyclical and their own sacred teachings and are determined to lead the way in repairing our climate.

Joelle Novey

The writer is the director of Interfaith Power & Light for the Washington D.C., Maryland and Northern Virginia area.

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