How happy I am to witness “good news”. Too often my heart laments the painful conditions, conflicts and violence that are happening in so many places in the world. Yet, what many believe as the most grievous concern is the question of the sustainability of the resources which support everyone in the world. No one is safe from drastic change in climate. A phenomenal transformation needs to occur for the earth to continue to nourish humanity. What a sign of hope to see actions taken to move us toward this transformation.
It gave me great hope that such a decision was recently decided by the board of the University of Dayton when they announced to begin divesting coal and fossil fuels from its $670 million investment pool. It is believed to be the first Catholic university in the nation to take this step. This is a great symbolic act that hopefully other universities can follow.
My brother is a professor at the University of Dayton. He loves the spirit there, the essence of community and his colleagues. It is a Catholic University faithful to Catholic social teaching.
In their statement President Daniel J Curran said:
“This action, which is a significant step in a long-term process, is consistent with Catholic social teachings, our Marianist values, and comprehensive campus wide sustainability initiatives and commitments under the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment. We cannot ignore the negative consequences of climate change, which disproportionately impact the world’s most vulnerable people. Our Marianist values of leadership and service to humanity call upon us to act on these principles and serve as a catalyst for civil discussion and positive change those benefits our planet.”
My hope and prayers is that many other universities will make a similar decisions to model and to teach toward the transformation needed to save our earth. The planning for global climate action surrounding the New York Climate Summit in September is also giving me hope. I am supporting the big march in Sunday, Sept. 21 in the city.
Kathleen Kanet, RSHM