- Jul 7, 2020
Catholic leaders warn that as the coronavirus pandemic spreads into the Amazon basin, the region may face a “humanitarian and environmental tragedy.”
Governors from eight Amazonian states in Brazil and Peru meeting at the Vatican agreed that the Amazon is threatened and called for a “green economy” that would allow people to generate income without destroying the forest.
Facing what signatories call an “avalanche of consumerism,” 40 bishops pledged Sunday to assume a “happily sober lifestyle, simple and in solidarity with those who have little or nothing; to reduce the production of garbage and the use of plastics, favoring the production and commercialization of agro-ecological products; and using public transport whenever possible.”
One might say that just as the Rhine flowed into the Tiber at Vatican II, in the words of the title to Ralph Wiltgen’s controversial history, so today the Rhine is also flowing into the Amazon.
Though he probably wouldn’t have chosen it as his battleground, in effect the debate over married priests at the 2019 Amazon synod could be Ouellet’s last hurrah, his final opportunity in a meaningful setting to make the case for tradition in a time of runaway change.
Not wasting any time, the chairman of Pope Francis’s Synod of Bishops on the Amazon kicked things off Monday morning by putting the hotly contested issues of married priests and the role of woman squarely on the assembly’s table.