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Rome Reports

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Catholic programs response to helping to protect the environment

“Catholic Energies” is a program that provides consultation and resources to Catholic organizations who want to “install solar power and other energy efficiency equipment to help reduce costs” and protect the environment. 

It was founded by Catholic Climate Covenant around the same time Pope Francis' encyclical Laudato Si' was published. In it the pope calls for worldwide cooperation in the protection of the environment. 

Executive Director, Catholic Energies
“He really made a statement not just about our common home, but how we as people of faith need to re-enter into the discussion about how we care for our home.” “How we do that practically, educate and get more people engaged.”

They assist a wide variety of Catholic organizations ranging from universities, retreat centers, hospitals to schools.

Executive Director, Catholic Energies
“It is to be a witness to their faith to the wider community, but to also save money; and to use those savings to put back into the core mission of those organizations. So for a parish it may be to use those savings to maybe finance the next energy saving project; or to hire a youth minister; or to simply save money for other uses for the parish.”

One of the organizations that has benefited from “Catholic Energies” is a parish in Virginia in the United States. 

Executive Director, Catholic Energies
“It now produces 100 percent of electricity that this parish needs. It has 400 or something solar panels on the roof of the buildings that are owned by the Immaculate conception from Hampton parish in Virginia.”

Along with IGS, they have also installed a two mega watt system for Catholic Charities in the Archdiocese of Washington, helping to provide power to 12 buildings there. 

They hope to continue in helping to protect the environment whilst at the same time advance the Church mission in the world.