Observe Sunday, Save the Environment

A Writer´s Suggestion, in Wake of G8 Meeting

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TRIESTE, Italy, MAR. 6, 2001 (Zenit.org).- There may be a solution to global warming after all: Keep holy the Lord´s day.

Following last weekend´s session of the G8 Environment Ministers, held in Trieste, Italy, a writer for the Italian newspaper Avvenire ventured a suggestion.

«The eight Ministers of the Environment seemed to have come to an agreement in Trieste to play a different tune in our planet, threatened by miasmas and poisons resulting from unbridled consumerism,» Vittorio Morero writes.

On Sunday, the eight renewed their commitment to struggle against global warming and promised to try to reach an agreement to reduce gas emissions that influence the warming.

Avvenire´s proposal, an alternative to rampant consumerism, is to continue to keep Sunday as a day dedicated to cleaning up the environment, to rest, and, in the case of Christians, to Sunday Mass.

The newspaper applauds, for instance, the initiative to have «no cars on Sundays,» which several European cities are observing in their historical centers. Adults and children take to the streets on this day, using non-polluting public transport.

Avvenire suggests that outdoor cultural events be offered in the summer.

«As Christians, it is natural that we should try to understand the urgent invitation in ´Novo Millennio Ineunte´ to the Christian community to go out to sea, after having been refreshed by Sunday worship, the Word of God, and participating joyfully in the liturgy,» Morero writes.

«If John Paul II offers Sunday as the program for renewal it is because it is well known that also, in the area of Christian tradition, Sunday has been and continues to be ruined by the passive acceptance of consumer models that lack quality,» Morero continues. «Needless to say, it is not enough just to bet on Sunday, but on a Sunday that is rich in content and very attractive. The stadiums will have to be closed and museums, libraries and theaters (theaters that do not disdain the classical) opened; brief tourist trips organized to nearby places, so that we are not ignorant of the beauties surrounding us.»

«We will have to abandon the logic of the market and for at least one day entrust ourselves to our imagination; to our own, and not one imposed by the priests and acolytes of the ´global empire.´ … Pastors of souls must think about it, who have received … the Lord´s commandment: ´Remember to keep holy the sabbath day.´»

The article concludes: «Let us save Sunday, the place and time of our civilization.»

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