“Demonstrate personal sacrifice” to care for creation, urges Ecumenical Patriarch

His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, speaking at the Halki Summit III in Istanbul, reflected that all of us are called to serve as priests of God’s creation.

The theme of the summit, being held 31 May-4 June, is "Theological Formation and Ecological Awareness.” The summit is named for the island of Halki, or Heybeliada, on which the first such gathering was originally convened. The summit assembles focused groups from diverse religious and social, as well as civil and corporate sectors, including eminent theologians and speakers from across the ecumenical spectrum.

In a keynote address on 1 June, the Ecumenical Patriarch said that, in light of the ecological crisis, the gathering provides a platform for conversation and promotes an atmosphere of dialogue to discern and foster changes in attitudes and lifestyles.

“Even recently, United Nations scientists once again warned the world about the unparalleled deterioration of our ecosystems, the unprecedented degradation of our rainforests, and the unalterable destruction of our coral reefs,” said the head of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople. “Moreover, all of these predicaments are unquestionably and irreversibly generated by human growth and greed.”

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Read the full text of His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew