I just downloaded the pope’s environmental encyclical Laudato Si. I am already having nightmares about my future confessions:
Bless me father for I have sinned. In the past month I have used 1,500 kilowatt-hours of electricity, 25 therms of natural gas and 60 gallons of gasoline. I am sorry for these emissions and the carbon footprints of my past life.
The priest then replies: My son, I understand it is difficult to be holy and green. Seldom can we change completely overnight. I urge you to take small steps. For your penance turn up your summer thermostat to 90 degrees and your winter thermostat down to 60 degrees. Carpool once a week.
Our Holy Father will be visiting the United States this year. Please help him offset his own carbon foot print and assuage your guilt by donating $10 to the Vatican Bank’s carbon credit fund. But please, never refer to it as a carbon indulgence. Go in peace and emit no more.
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Gary Carlson, Boise