An article came across my desk today from a Jewish news source ( ISRAEL21c NEWSLETTER) talking about an interfaith forum in Jerusalem. I thought I would share. It’s good when we get it right.

Quelling the effects of climate change

The Interfaith Eco Forum held at Jerusalem’s American Colony Hotel in July drew about 40 people, including representatives from all three monotheistic faiths. [Rabbi Yonatan] Neril pointed out poignant reasons for bringing faith into the equation.

“The widespread human degradation of the natural world indicates that our way of life is out of balance,” he says. “This is where religions come in — to be a force for positive change in the world. And there is no better place to begin than with religious leaders here in the Holy Land.”

Religion can be a force for positive change, says Rabbi Yonatan Neril.

He sees the multi-faith paradigm in Israel as an advantage rather than as grounds for more conflict. “People of many faiths draw inspiration from their respective traditions to live sustainably, and these efforts cross-pollinate each other and encourage coexistence on our shared planet and in this land,” Neril says.

The forum attracted worldwide media attention and featured talks by Dr. Michael Kagan, the initiator of the Holy Land Climate Change Declaration endorsed in April by the Council of Religious Institutions of the Holy Land; [Catholic]Bishop William Shomali of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem; Haj Salah Zuheika, deputy minister of the Palestinian Authority’s Ministry of Religious Affairs; and Rabbi David Rosen, the American Jewish Committee’s international director of inter-religious affairs.

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