Government leaders are taking up the challenge of promoting the great ecological conversion taught by Pope Francis in his encyclical Laudato Si’. In Laudato Si’, Pope Francis calls for “decisive action, here and now” in order to avoid “catastrophes, desolation and dire consequences” (Laudato Si’ #161). Politicians are answering the call to focus on the great “harm we have inflicted” on “our sister, Mother Earth” (Laudato Si’ #1, 2).
On February 17, 2021, political leaders in County Mayo, Ireland, were “appealing” to people not to use their cars during this year’s celebration of Lent. Noel Gibbons, Mayo County Council Road Safety Officer, is asking people to “walk or use their bikes” to help reduce CO2 emissions when taking short trips. Then Laura Dixon, climate action officer for the Mayo County Council, made the following remarkable statement:
“Going on a ‘car fast’ for Lent and reducing the amount we use the car is a great opportunity to slow down, engage with nature and, as Pope Francis said in Laudato Si’, to care for our common home’.” 
A “car” fasting for Lent, engaging “nature” and Laudato Si’? It is very concerning when political leaders cite Catholic doctrine and Pope Francis’ encyclical when making policy recommendations to their communities. Laudato Si’ not only calls for celebrating Sunday and the Eucharist as the “law of weekly rest” (#237), but it also focuses on the damage done to Mother Earth. There is nothing stated about the harm we cause to God and the sins against our Creator.
Laudato Si’ has become the new eco-religion that the world is embracing, including religious and political leaders. It is concerned about the imaginary sins we commit against rocks, trees, land, water and animals, while denying real sins against God, the final judgment and the need to form a personal relationship with the Creator. There is no concern for the fate of people who die every day without Christ. Sin and evil are reduced to social and ecological constructs that require political remedies through civil legislation.
Our civilization is in apostasy and rebellion against God. The immediate crisis facing humanity is Christological and not ecological. Somehow the modern church is not focusing on this real spiritual dilemma. Instead, we are immersed in the global discussion about how to save the planet when we should be engaged in a worldwide discussion about the eternal destiny of the human race and how we can save souls.
The truth is that our earth’s ecosystems are not going nowhere. Our planet is being “preserved” by the word of God for the coming Day of Judgment. Are we getting ready for this day? And are we helping others prepare for the day when we will all have to stand before God to give an account?
“For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water: Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished: But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.” 2 Peter 3:5-7.