The Awesome of the Patriarch
Joining the growing movement of religious institutions fighting environmental problems, the Los Angeles Episcopal Diocese voted Saturday to launch an environmental activism campaign. The diocese, with 147 parishes and 85,000 members, called for study of environmental issues and a range of actions, from making church buildings more energy-efficient to urging churchgoers to lead simpler lives that put less strain on the planet’s resources. National umbrella groups like the National Religious Partnership for the Environment and the Committee on Jewish Life and the Environment have been encouraging local congregations to become involved in environmental issues. Meanwhile, Patriarch Bartholomew, the spiritual leader of the world’s 200 million Orthodox Christians, continues to make environmentalism a focus of his work, declaring pollution a “sin” and speaking out on environmental concerns wherever he travels.