Every one of Chile’s Catholic bishops has offered to resign in a grand gesture meant to accept responsibility for the sexual abuse scandals in Chile’s church. Pope Francis is now at a tipping point, with an opportunity to follow his words about atonement with action.
Los Angeles may sometimes be called a city of stars, but it also a city of oil fields. A Community Health Councils report from 2015, for example, began, “The land of sunshine, celebrities, and world-famous beaches is also home to 5,000 active oil and gas wells. These wells are spread across 10 oil fields and 70 different sites embedded in neighborhoods, parks, and commercial districts throughout Los Angeles City.” The report includes this map of active wells in the city. These oil wells pose major environmental hazards. Pastor Kevin Sauls of the Holman United Methodist Church notes that oil wells expose 600,000 Angelenos to harmful petrochemicals. “Most of these toxic wells, some 75 percent, are in Black and Brown communities in South L.A.,” Sauls adds.
Is it better to be an atheist who does good deeds than a Catholic who does not? Pope Francis’s words are in line with his teaching about stewardship and service and cut through the din of rhetoric to remind nonprofits and others of their mission.
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