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Richard D. Phalen

Kansas City, MO

1.       Our political and religious leaders should follow the example of our Holy Father Pope Francis who recently wrote a major encyclical on climate change.  Just last week Bishop Soto of California stated that lawmakers should think about the legacy that we wish to leave to future generations; he stated that “…we are a pioneer state and we are innovators. And so I would ask (politicians) to really consider that and not be hesitant to try to push forward what is essential not only for the good of California but (to) also set a high mark for other world leaders to follow.”  Here in the heartland of our nation many are complacent about the reality of climate change and are pursuing policies that are detrimental to the dangers enunciated by Pope Francis and so many others.  We must urge our politicians and electorate to read the Pope’s words (available on-line for printing) and support policies consistent with the reality of global climate change.

2.       There has been much harsh rhetoric from recent political discourse regarding immigration that is at variance with the fundamental teachings of Jesus and the Church.  But the recent tragedies in Europe involving immigrants from Syria, Iraq and other nearby states are most disheartening, and our own nation must direct much more attention to a problem that many feel we helped to create.  Whatever the cause however the scale and rapid succession of these calamities call for breaking the silence in our land regarding the deplorable catastrophe unfolding day by day in Europe.