On the third anniversary of his encyclical Laudato Si, Pope Francis convened a conference focused on the theme “Saving our Common Home and the Future of Life on Earth.” In remarks made to the attendees, the Pontiff said, “Your presence here is a sign of your commitment to take concrete steps to save the planet and the life it sustains, inspired by the Encyclical’s assumption that ‘everything is connected.'” That principle, he said, “lies at the heart of an integral ecology.” The Pope, who recently held a closed-door meeting with oil executives to discuss climate action, warned: “There is a real danger that we will leave future generations only rubble, deserts and refuse… the effects of the present imbalance can only be reduced by our decisive action, here and now.” He asked nations to honor the commitments made in Paris and looked ahead to the next international climate conference in Poland, which “could prove a milestone on the path set out by the 2015 Paris Agreement.”

The Pope also called on Christian churches and religions which “have a key role to play” to act.