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Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Doing Your Part to Care for Our Common Home

What a great follow up event to the first annual summer bash I held at my house, with the rest of the Renewable Now team, over Labor Day weekend in which we, too, educated on helping neighbors and friends of the show model their homes into eco-friendly, efficient, clean energy houses.  We had a full house and hope for the same on Sept 24 for St. Patrick's in Providence.

If you are local, sign up.  I, along with many others, will be helping to teach that night.  If not, please find, or start, similar event right in your neighborhood.  Everyone will benefit:  Go to Renewable for more info or get in touch with us:

"When Pope Francis addresses the United States Congress on the morning of September 24, he will no doubt say something about caring for the created order.

On that very evening, the Diocese of Providence will help share practical ways we can do that — in our parishes, homes, and our own lives. Whether your goal is to save the planet, save money, or both, you’ll learn much in these few hours of networking with local experts and organizations.

If you’re not excited by an evening of long talks by eco-experts and energy officials, you should know this: there will be no long talks. Instead the event offers rapid-fire introductions by organizational representatives telling everyone who they are and what they offer. That’s it. Then everyone can mingle and chat one-on-one with the organization reps of their choice.

So if you have questions — like how your parish can be like Bristol’s Our Lady of Mount Carmel or Warwick’s Saints Rose and Clement by installing solar at your school or parish; or how to benefit from recycling or composting programs; or help your neighbors and fellow parishioners connect with energy efficiency programs; or support local agriculture; or learn about funding for tree plantings — then you’ll want to be at St. Patrick’s Church, 244 Smith Street, Providence, at 6 p.m. on September 24.

And don’t hesitate to help others put the Holy Father’s words into action by telling them about this eco-networking opportunity. Remember, the general public and all faith communities are welcome.

The free event is sponsored by the diocese’s Office of Life and Family Ministry, with help from the Office of Evangelization and Faith Formation, in recognition of the “Season of Creation,” which begins on September 1 and ends on the Feast of St. Francis, October 4. For more information or to RSVP, call Carol Owens at 401-421-7833, extension 218, or email her at

On September 17, a week before the diocesan event, Father Robert Forcier, pastor of St. Augustine’s Parish, 639 Mount Pleasant Ave., Providence, will host me in a talk that unpacks Pope Francis’s recent encyclical, “Laudato Si’: On Care for Our Common Home.”

In one hour I’ll cover how our faith embraces ecology, as well as some of the surprising things that Pope Francis and his predecessors have said about environmental protection, and, of course, how many in the mainstream media didn’t quite get what Francis said in his eco-encyclical.

The doors to this free event are open to one and all. The talk begins at 6:30 p.m.

And while you’re making plans, you’ll want to set aside November 12. That night the diocese will be hosting an important evening focusing on Laudato Si’ in light of ongoing discussions about climate change — especially December’s international climate talks in Paris. Hosted by Bishop Tobin and the Office of Evangelization and Faith Formation, the evening will offer the observations of scientists and theologians as faith and reason share the stage to help us all foster a climate committed to the common good.

Stay tuned for much more on this — and even more news as the Diocese of Providence, its parishes, and religious orders do their part to help us care for our common home."

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