Tourism and Sustainable Energy: Powering Sustainable Development

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The Vatican Information Service (VIS) has reported that the 2012 Message for World Tourism Day has as its theme "Tourism and Sustainable Energy: Powering Sustainable Development". The message was released on 25 July 2012 by the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant Peoples. World Tourism Day will be celebrated this year on 27 September.

According to VIS, the message notes that the United Nations has declared 2012 as the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All. Its objective is to highlight “the need to improve access to reliable, affordable, economically viable, socially acceptable and environmentally sound energy services and resources for sustainable development.”

The message includes the following statements: “It is an erroneous assumption to think that 'an infinite quantity of energy and resources are available, that it is possible to renew them quickly, and that the negative effects of the exploitation of the natural order can be easily absorbed.’”

"In this area also the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People wishes to offer its contribution based on the conviction that 'the Church has a responsibility towards creation and she must assert this responsibility in the public sphere.' It is not up to us to propose concrete technical solutions but to show that development cannot be reduced to mere technical, political or economic parameters. We wish to accompany this development with some appropriate ethical guidelines which stress the fact that all growth must always be at the service of the human being and the common good."

"We cannot separate the theme of environmental ecology from concern for an appropriate human ecology in the sense of interest in the human being's integral development. In the same way, we cannot separate our view of man and nature from the bond which unites them with the Creator. God has entrusted the good stewardship of creation to the human being. In the first place, a great educational effort is important in order to promote 'an effective shift in mentality which can lead to the adoption of new life-styles.' This conversion of the mind and heart 'allows us rapidly to become more proficient in the art of living together that respects the alliance between man and nature.'

"The Social Doctrine of the Church reminds us that 'care for the environment represents a challenge for all of humanity. It is a matter of a common and universal duty, that of respecting a common good'. A good which human beings do not own but are 'stewards', a good which God entrusted to them so that they would administer it properly.”

"Pope Benedict XVI says that 'the new evangelization, to which all are called, requires us to keep in mind and to make good use of the many occasions that tourism offers us to put forward Christ as the supreme response to modern man’s fundamental questions'. Therefore, we invite everyone to promote and use tourism in a respectful and responsible way in order to allow it to develop all of its potentialities, with the certainty that in contemplating the beauty of nature and peoples we can arrive at the encounter with God."

The complete text of the 2012 message for World Tourism Day will be posted later on the CCCB website.

Last Updated on Friday, August 03 2012  
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