Diocese’s Action Plan

The San Diego diocese has launched significant projects across its parishes and schools in response to Pope Francis’s urgent challenge to protect the environment and care for creation.

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Laudato Si’ Action Platform Year One Plan

The Diocese of San Diego Laudato Si’ Action Platform Year One Plan is largely drawn from our Creation Care Action Plan, which states:

It is our sacred duty to preserve the beauty and bounty of our local ecology for generations into the future. The Judeo-Christian tradition mandates care for God’s creation and begins with the Book of Genesis. The Old Testament is filled with beautiful images of nature and the revelation of God in nature. God’s love is the fundamental moving force in all created things. Jesus used nature as a teaching tool many times. St. Augustine, writing in the early 400s, said “Creation is the primary and most perfect revelation of God.” St. Bonaventure referred to nature as a vestige, or footprint, of God. Now Pope Francis, in the face of global environmental degradation, raises the care of creation to a central part of our Catholic faith, defining the Seven Goals of the Laudato Si Action Platform:

  1. Response to the Cry of the Earth
  2. Response to the Cry of the Poor
  3. Ecological Economics
  4. Adoption of Sustainable Lifestyles
  5. Ecological Education
  6. Ecological Spirituality
  7. Community Resilience and Empowerment

These seven goals guide our Laudato Si’ Action Platform Year One Plan.

Creation Care Action Plan

In July 2021, the Diocese of San Diego finalized an aspirational Creation Care Action Plan (CCAP), guiding and educating our local Catholic Community on the causes and effects of environmental degradation and advising actionable steps to reduce harmful human behaviors in our homes, our parishes, our businesses, and our society–in response to the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor and vulnerable. Cardinal Robert McElroy, Bishop of San Diego, welcomes us to this action, imploring us: “We as the Catholic community of San Diego and Imperial Counties must adopt a radical new commitment to such goals if we as a planet are to survive meaningfully and hand on a life-giving existence to the coming generations.”

This comprehensive source document offers aspirational guidance for all Laudato Si’ Action Planners in the Diocese of San Diego region.

The diocese, under Bishop Robert McElroy’s leadership, launched a Creation Care Ministry, which is led by Father Emmet Farrell. This ministry works on two fronts: education and action.

The ministry inspires and supports parishes and schools across San Diego and Imperial Counties to form their own Creation Care Teams. These teams develop and implement action plans to protect the environment.

The diocese has made a significant investment in solar projects at 58 of its parishes, two high schools and its Pastoral Center. The diocese installed charging stations in the parking lot of its Pastoral Center. And its staff switched to using sustainable, biodegradable products whenever possible.

The Creation Care Ministry, working in collaboration with Bishop McElroy, developed a Diocesan Climate Action Plan. The plan provides fact-based information about the existential threat climate change poses to all life; gives moral and spiritual reasons to act; and provides practical steps individuals, families and communities can implement.

The Diocesan plan will work in tandem with the Vatican’s Action Platform, to be formally launched in October 2021.


Maria de Lourdes Valencia
Associate Director, Culture of Life
Phone: (858) 490-8323
mvalenciaEmail at symbolsdcatholic.org
Christina Slentz, PhD
Associate Director, Creation Care
Phone: (858) 490-8327
cslentzEmail at symbolsdcatholic.org
Mark Smith
Administrative Assistant
Phone: (858) 490-8324
msmithEmail at symbolsdcatholic.org
Rev. Emmet Farrell
Spiritual Advisor, Creation Care
efarrellEmail at symbolsdcatholic.org