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Pope Francis: Christians have a duty to protect environment

Pope Francis (CNS)

Protecting the environment is a Christian duty not just reserved for ‘green’ activists, Pope Francis said today.

The Pope tackled the topic of creation in his morning homily at Casa Santa Marta, warning that Christians must be the protectors of the natural world, not its masters.

He said: “When we hear that people have meetings about how to preserve creation, we can say: ‘No, they are the greens!’ No, they are not the greens! This is the Christian!”

He added that the Christian who fails to protect the environment “is a Christian who does not care about the work of God.”

Reflecting on a reading from the Book of Genesis, Pope Francis said that God continually sustains his creation. He also spoke of the second creation by Jesus, who restores what has been damaged by sin.

The Pope is expected to release his eagerly anticipated encyclical on the environment in June or July ahead of the UN Climate Change Conference to be held in Paris in December.

On his flight from Sri Lanka to Manila in January, Francis was reported to have said that human beings are largely to blame for climate change.