OSLO (19 June, 2017)
Religious and indigenous leaders from all corners of the globe launched today an unprecedented initiative they say will bring needed moral attention and spiritual commitment to bear on global efforts to end deforestation and protect the tropical rainforests—forests that are fundamental to human life, the planet’s health and reducing the emissions fueling climate change. It marks the first time religious leaders from a broad spectrum of faiths will work hand-in-hand with Indigenous Peoples, the world’s leading rainforest guardians, to call upon and activate billions of people of faith worldwide to stand up for rainforests. The gathering was held in the presence of His Majesty King Harald V of Norway.
STATEMENT OF PARTICIPANTS OF THE INTERFAITH RAINFOREST INITIATIVE
18-21 JUNE 2017 in Oslo, Norway
Bishop Whalon was the only Anglican Communion delegate.
The Earth’s rainforests are an irreplaceable gift.
They support boundless biodiversity, a balanced climate, and the cultures and communities of indigenous peoples who live in them. They generate cooling air and rains that water the Earth. They are spectacular, and vital to all life.
And they are at grave risk.
We, people of many faiths and spiritualities, gathered in Oslo to hear the cry of Earth’s rainforests, their flora and fauna, and the people who live in them. We are Indigenous, Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist, Daoist, joined by scientists who share with us, and open for us, a deeper appreciation of the miracle of the forests. We are from 21 countries – from Amazonia, the forests of Indonesia, the Congo Basin, Meso-America and South and Southeast Asia and the Pacific Islands, and from the US, Canada, Europe, and China. While from many places, we recognize that we are one human family, that we share one Earth.
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