Young activists from “The last generation” and scientists organised in the “Scientist rebellion” movement have organised several actions to draw attention to the climate catastrophe and call on responsible politicians and business leaders to act. A group of scientists blocked lanes on a large road in central Munich on Friday, 28 October 2022, to draw attention to the urgency of taking action against the climate catastrophe. Among the activists was Jesuit priest, social scientist and social ethicist Dr Jörg Alt SJ. A Sister of the Congregatio Jesu had also joined the protest. Finally, the high-profile action drew attention to an appeal by 103 theologians supporting the protests for fast and effective climate protection. Four CJ sisters from MEP belong to the first signatories of the appeal.
“More and more groups and people are taking part in non-violent actions of civil disobedience against the ecological and climate crisis. We, the undersigned, share the concerns of the activists. In view of the dramatic nature of the situation, the diminishing and the inadequacy of previous ways of discourse, we call for solidarity and support for these actions in solidarity. Let us remember: civil disobedience is a component of Christian practice (church asylum, etc.) right up to the present day, inspired time and again by the memory of prophets.”
This is how the appeal begins, which Fr Jörg Alt SJ initiated together with Prof. Dr Ute Leimgruber (pastoral theologian, Nuremberg) and Prof. Dr Jürgen Manemann (theologian and political philosopher, Hanover). The appeal further states:
“The living conditions of 3.3 to 3.6 billion people are already “highly endangered” by the climate catastrophe (IPCC, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change),” the appeal states. “Every day, up to 150 animal and plant species become extinct. The climate science evidence on the state of God’s creation is staggering, the consequences, especially for the Global South, disastrous. This rapidly developing emergency challenges us theologians to act.”
By supporting the climate activists in their struggle to draw attention and generate action to prevent massive damages due to climate change, the CJ sisters are also following the mandate formulated by the CJ General Congregation this summer: “Listening to the cry of the earth and the poor, we hear God’s invitation to respond through our lives and transformative mission, updating our ministries according to the needs of the time, place and people.”
The appeal of the theologians also provides a theological rationale for action on climate and creation: “Theology cannot be done from a neutral standpoint. On the contrary, as Christians, we bear central responsibility for the world. The Gospel’s message of salvation and justice relates to the whole of creation. Given the plight of the earth, it is no longer possible to do theology that does not understand this plight as its central challenge.”
The appeal is online in form of a petition. You can read and sign it here: