Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Thomas Merton inspired Pope Francis love for the environment

Environmentalist monk inspired Pope Francis, website explains

Pope Francis
Pope Francis stands on a praying platform on the banks of the Rio Grande in Juarez, Mexico, as he blesses a group of migrants sitting along the border fence in El Paso, Texas, Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2016. Pope Francis offered a prayer for the migrants who have died crossing the border. (AP Photo/Eric Gay) (Eric Gay)
Kim Chatelain, | The Times-Picayune By Kim Chatelain, | The Times-Picayune The Times-Picayune    
on March 30, 2016 
More than half a century ago, long before climate change became part of the American consciousness, a prolific poet and author began calling attention to it. Today the writings of Catholic monk Thomas Merton are being re-examined for their forward-thinking look at the environment -- and have even served to inspire Pope Francis, according to
In September, while urging lawmakers in the United States to join other countries in addressing global warming, the pope described Merton as "a thinker who challenged the certitudes of his time." In the 1950s, Merton traveled the globe to explore Zen Buddhism in Sri Lanka and to meet with the Dalai Llama in India. He was very worldly with his environmental views long before others, according to the website.
Merton died accidentally in 1968 when an electric fan electrocuted him.

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