Cardinal indicates themes of pope's climate change document

AP News
Posted: Mar 10, 2015 5:16 PM

A Vatican official who helped draft Pope Francis' upcoming encyclical on climate change is signaling the direction the document will take.

The encyclical won't be released until June or July. But Cardinal Peter Turkson gave a talk last week in Ireland that Vatican observers consider an outline of what Francis will say. Turkson is head of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace.

Turkson acknowledged disagreement over the causes of global warming, but said it's not contested that the planet is getting warmer. The cardinal said the pope believes Christians have a duty rooted in "ancient biblical teaching" to curb climate change.

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Turkson said Francis is not making an attempt at "greening the church." Instead, the pope is emphasizing Roman Catholic teaching that links protecting life with preserving the environment.