Monthly Focus on Climate Change

Focus for September/October 2021

 Identify: This month, as citizens of one of Canada’s premier leadership communities on climate action, given the increasingly global realities of climate change, we, as Catholics, can offer our prayers for the success of the city’s plans and priorities.

Links: https://www.cityofkingston.ca/apps/councilpriorities/index.html#home

 1. DEMONSTRATE LEADERSHIP ON CLIMATE ACTION:

Given the economic, social and environmental threats of greenhouse gas emissions and Kingston’s 2019 declaration of a climate emergency, the City is committed to stewarding the environment for future generations. As an internationally connected city, Kingston will address this global issue as a local climate action leader and inspire Kingston residents to become part of the solution.

The City will lead by example with measurable, effective emission reductions, building retrofits and other energy efficiencies, to become carbon neutral as soon as possible and no later than 2040. This will result in a 15% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions across the City’s operations by 2022.

The City will electrify its vehicle fleet, promote green development/energy and active transportation, create well-maintained litter free roads, expand green spaces, protect wetlands, and promote more recycling and reduction: acting on climate change, protecting the environment and the most vulnerable, and lessening costs of waste, today and in the long term. 

2. We’ve turned the heat up in cities, so how can we cool them down? EarthBeat: Stories of climate crisis, faith and action from the National Catholic Reporter. Read, at your discretion, how other cities are learning to cope with “urban heat islands” and some Catholic responses in the USA.

 Pray: As Catholics we do contribute, at least spiritually if not directly, with prayers of thanks and respect for the success of all local “small steps” addressing the global effects of climate change on our common home, while also praying for others on Earth, with a less blessed environment than the one we do enjoy here in Kingston.

 Act: Remember that in our secular society the first action to success, too often ignored, is our prayer prior to and for the duration of that action.

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Focus for August 2021

 Identify: This month we focus on how blessed our municipality of Kingston is relative to what other areas of Canada have been undergoing due to climatic extremes in weather patterns.

Links: Daily news reports pr0vide visual evidence on the results of those extremes on our air, water and earth.  

Pray: On reflection: Our blessed municipality’s weather, that provides free health benefits, deserves a focused thought and prayer of gratitude and praise to our Creator.

 Act: While expressing our gratitude for our blessings, give through on how best to contribute to the local efforts as part of the global responses to climate change for our common home.

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Focus for July 2021 

Identify: This month we focus on what Pope Francis said: “Prayer is a kind of musical score, where we put the melody of our lives because it acts as…the place where every action finds its meaning, its reason and its peace,” The Catholic Register: Prayer as a musical

Links: 

The Creation Care Prayer Network is a network of communities committed to the healing of our common home. The network is connected through prayer and Eucharistic adoration and warmly welcomes religious and lay contemplative communities. https://laudatosipray.org/

Visit the Laudato Si’ Action Platform: a unique collaboration between the Vatican, an international coalition of Catholic organizations, and “all men and women of good will.” (LS 3) https://laudatosiactionplatform.org/about/

  • “Taking a truly ground-up approach, it is rooted in the strengths and realities of communities around the world, empowering all to take “decisive action, here and now” as we journey towards a better future together. 161)
  • “Action is urgently needed. Our Creator called the human family to be the steward of creation, but we have neglected that call. Our hotter, dirtier, deader planet is driving up the risk of suffering. The most vulnerable suffer above all.”

Pray: As Catholics we do contribute, at least spiritually if not directly, with prayers of thanks and respect for the success of all local “small steps” addressing the global effects of climate change on our common home, while also praying for others on Earth, with a less blessed environment than the one we do enjoy here in Kingston.

Act: Read the article of our focus prayer as a musical and continue to orient your daily actions, including those for our common home, while remembering: “one thing that must always precede action: prayer.”

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Focus for June 2021

 Identify: This month our focus is on how urban gardening could be at the forefront of climate change adaptation in Canada’s cities.

Links:

Pray: As Catholics we do contribute, at least spiritually if not directly, with prayers of thanks and respect for the success of all local “small steps” addressing the global effects of climate change on our common home, while also praying for others on Earth with a less blessed environment than the one we do enjoy here in Kingston.

 Act: Many of you are already practicing “urban gardening” in your backyards or communally in one of the 35 community gardens shown on the interactive map; well done. Do visit one of those community gardens or a groomed park, say a prayer of thanks and also thank one or several of the gardeners for their efforts in helping to sustain our common home.

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Focus for May 2021

Identify: This month our focus is on how blessed we are with the ongoing greening of our immediate Kingston environment, despite the growing realities of Climate Change devastations and threats to all of God’s creation, our common home.

Links:

 Pray: As Catholics we do contribute, at least spiritually if not directly, with prayers of thanks and respect for the success of all local “small steps” addressing the global effects of climate change on our common home, while also praying for others on Earth with a less blessed environment than the one we can enjoy here in Kingston.

Act: Revisit https://www.cityofkingston.ca/residents/recreation/parks-trails and plan a real or virtual visit to several of the hundred green spaces for our wellbeing in our community, while expressing your respect and gratitude for our own common home’s blessings.

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Focus for April 2021

 Identify: This month our focus is on Climate Change “caused by greenhouse gas emissions resulting from human activities [that] poses a grave threat to the future of humanity” and our individual or communal “small steps” in response to those threats.

Links:

Here is an extract view of “green” Kingston within the parts of the larger Cataraqui Conservation region to its north and east as shown below. This extract is taken from https://www.cityofkingston.ca/residents/recreation/parks-trails

 “With over 200 inland lakes, hundreds of kilometres of streams and a variety of wetlands and wildlife habitats, the Cataraqui Region has an abundance of natural resources. It is important that our communities conserve these natural resources to maintain the region’s diverse landscape and ecology, as well as protecting our drinking water.” https://cataraquiconservation.ca/pages/watershed

Pray: As Catholics we can contribute, at least spiritually with prayers of thanks and respect for the success of all local “small steps” addressing the global effects of climate change on our common home.

 Act: A visit to https://www.modernlocavore.ca/learn/what-locavore may suggest various ways of enjoying the local food growing or grown opportunities. Those opportunities are ways of personally participating in caring for own corner of our common home.

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Focus for March 2021

 Identify: This month our focus is on Kingston’s clean air, water and multiple green spaces while recognizing, as Catholics, the importance of the city’s personnel responsible for sustaining these natural health promoting elements of our municipal environment.

Links:

Pray: As Catholics we can contribute, at least spiritually with a prayer, for the success of all local “small steps” by the municipality, their personnel, other community efforts and our own addressing the effects of Covid-19 and climate change on our environment and health that actualize our Social Teaching through the collection of available services.

 Act: Our prayers are further actualized through our actions, that despite the ongoing need for safe practices due to Covid 19, might include a few deep breaths of free clean air and an appreciative walk-about our immediate neighbourhood.

Focus for February 2021

Identify: For the 2021 mid-winter month of February our focus is on Cardinal Czerny’s “small steps” to solve the environmental and climate crisis where ordinary people live and work as found on Action on our Environment above.

Links:

Pray: As Catholics we can contribute, at least spiritually, for the success of all local “small steps” by the municipality, other community efforts and our own addressing the effects of Covid-19 and climate change on our environment and health while actualizing our Social Teaching.

Act: For this month of February the practical measures during lockdown need be observed while continuing to attend virtual Masses through our favorite media and of course praying “Our Father…Give us this day our daily bread…”

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Focus for January 2021

 Identify: The focus for this month is contained in the Pope’s message for the 54th World Day of Peace marked on 1 January, that offers the Church’s social doctrine as a “compass” to foster a culture of care for peace in the world.

Links: For your added exploration around this month’s focus:

Pray: As Catholics we can contribute, at least spiritually, for the success of the municipal and other community efforts addressing the effects of Covid-19 and climate change on our environment and health that range from conservation and environment to business to housing and homelessness.

Act: For this month of January 2021 the practical measures during lockdown need be observed while continuing to attend virtual Masses through our favorite media and of course praying “Our Father…Give us this day our daily bread…”

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Archive of Monthly Focuses on Climate Change 2019-2020