Divest the Vatican – There’s Never Been a Better Time!

the vatican in rome wikicommons

Pope Francis has gained huge public approval with his recent statements in favor of science and in support of Vatican adoption of environmental protection practices. It seems that the time has never been better for divesting the Vatican of all funds supporting fossil fuels. With this goal in mind, a petition requesting Vatican divestment has been initiated by 350.org in partnership with Interfaith Power and Light (IPL). This petition is now available for viewing and signing online at 350.org.

Around 1.2 billion Catholics abide under the lofty umbrella of Pope Francis and the papacy of Rome. Respected by both followers of the Catholic faith, and non Catholics from all over the world, the pope is in an unparalleled position of moral authority on Earth. The time has come to respectfully request this powerful leader to address the injustices of global warming by divesting Vatican funds from the fossil fuel industry.

pope francis with crowd in st peters wikicommons

Time for New and Concerted Activity

The facts on climate change are clear. Global warming is a direct result of human activity related to the production and usage of fossil fuels. Slowly but steadily, the human race is recognizing that new and concerted activity is required to counteract the damage that fossil fuels have inflicted on the Earth.

A clear moral argument has risen in the global conscience, demanding restitution for the terrible injustices done, and the danger we find ourselves in, as a result of heavy investment in the oil industry. Divesting funds from fossil fuel producers is our best hope of slowing, and ultimately stopping, the terrifying aspects of global warming.

The Fossil Fuel Divestment movement has gained huge momentum in the last two years. Particularly with global faith communities joining the movement, the moral argument against fossil fuels has gained wide recognition and popular support.

interfaith r4e conference at peoples climate march in nyc

Interfaith Power and Light Leads the Charge

A new front has opened on the #GoFossilFree movement originally founded by 350.org: Divest the Vatican. Carrying the banner at the forefront of this new campaign, Interfaith Power and Light offers the following message on their web site:

Did you know that the Vatican bank controls $9 billion in investments? What if all that money were invested with the values Pope Francis shares: protecting Creation for future generations and serving the poor? That could have a big impact. IPL is joining with our friends at 350.org to encourage the Pope to put the Vatican’s money where its mouth is.

Please join IPL and our friends at 350.org in urging the Vatican to divest from fossil fuels. Add your name to our petition today.

The Petition to the Pope for Divesting the Vatican:

Here are the words to the petition requesting the divestment of the Vatican. The message to Pope Francis is respectful, clear, and concise:

To His Holiness, Pope Francis:

Your acknowledgement of the dire threat of climate change, the Vatican’s efforts to become the first carbon-neutral state, and your dedication to caring for Creation give us great hope.

We urge you to use the power of your office to set an example for the world. We call on you to divest the Vatican Bank from all investments in the fossil fuel industry, which is driving the climate crisis, and to publicly support the growing movement to divest from fossil fuels.

Thank you for your leadership.

There is no better time to sign this petition than right now. With so much momentum building, we can’t let this opportunity pass. As a religious leader in the service of our Creator, Pope Francis has a moral obligation to help mitigate the damages of global warming on creation. He can easily do that by divesting the Vatican.

Please consider signing this petition, and asking others to sign it, too. Our moral obligation as stewards of God’s creation can be fulfilled successfully, but only through unified, concerted action.

vatican from the river pubdom pixabay

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About the Author

Aisha Abdelhamid (Birth-name Kathleen Vail) is a freelance lifestyle and environmental science writer currently living in Vancouver, BC. Her interests include environmental conservation, climate science, renewable energy, faith-based environmental activism, sustainable economics, corporate social responsibility, creative lifestyles, and healthy living.