Glenmary representatives pen letter to editor on clean water rule

Posted: 7/7/2017

The following letter was sent to editors of 21 newspapers around the nation earlier this week. It is being published here as an open letter on behalf of its authors.

Dear Editor,

As people of faith, we are deeply concerned, even appalled, at the proposal released recently by the Environmental Protection Agency, along with the Army Corps of Engineers, announcing their intention to rescind the 2015 Clean Water Rule.

This action has the potential to make water sources more polluted, and opens the door for critical areas of America’s wetlands—many of which are key to the economic life of millions of American—to be exploited. According to its website, “The mission of the EPA is to protect human health and the environment.” The proposal released this week will very likely do the opposite.

Our Catholic Faith teaches us that man’s dominion over nature is not absolute. Rather the Catechism of the Catholic Church states, “It is limited by concern for the quality of life of his neighbor, including generations to come; it requires a religious respect for the integrity of creation.”

As part of a pro-life, Catholic Christian, missionary organization, we believe this move to muddle our nation’s waters is a violation of human rights. We urge the EPA, Army Corps of Engineers and the White House to reconsider this proposal in light of the common good and the likely negative impact on the poor, elderly and infirm.

In Glenmary’s mission work in rural America we have seen the devastating effect of unregulated water and environmental conditions. Those hurt the most are usually at-risk people in need of protection in the oft-forgotten areas of the rural United States.

Since air, water and pollution cross state lines, effective national laws are a necessity. We strongly oppose this EPA proposal because of the danger it poses for our citizens, and because it violates the dignity of God’s creation, which is not a commodity to be used at will.

Tom Navin, Director of Glenmary Commission on Justice, Peace and Integrity

Brother Larry Johnson, Second Vice President Glenmary Home Missioners
Father Neil Pezzulo, First Vice President Glenmary Home Missioners