The Episcopal bishops in Massachusetts have written to President-Elect Donald Trump, reminding him that while Episcopal congregations pray regularly for our national leaders, we also pray for the environment and the earth. As those who “respect the facts of science,” they expressed serious concerns over the selection of Scott Pruitt, “a person who has consistently and adamantly opposed all laws and policies that provide even minimal ‘protection’ to the environment,” to head up the Environmental Protection Agency.
“We will pray for a better choice,” the bishops write.
The full text of the letter follows.
Dec. 12, 2016
Donald J. Trump
President-Elect of the United States of America
735 5th Avenue
New York, NY 10022
Dear President-Elect Trump,
We, the bishops of the Episcopal Church in Massachusetts, are glad to let you know that all of our 235 churches pray for you regularly in our liturgies with these or similar words: “For those in positions of public trust, especially Barack our President and Donald our President-Elect, that they may serve justice, and promote the dignity and freedom of every person.”
We also pray: “Give us reverence for the earth as your own creation, that we may use its resources rightly in the service of others and to your honor and glory.”
The Episcopal Church stands strongly for the protection of the environment. We respect the facts of science. We support laws and policies that address the reality of climate change. We are in the process of divesting our financial interest in fossil fuels. Most recently our Presiding Bishop, the Most Rev. Michael Curry, joined Native Americans at Standing Rock in their effort to protect their water and their sacred land. Numerous other Episcopal Church leaders have likewise traveled to Standing Rock.
Our respect for our government leaders and our reverence for the earth as God’s creation impel us to write you to express our dismay about your selection of Scott Pruitt to head the Environmental Protection Agency. We wonder why a person who has consistently and adamantly opposed all laws and policies that provide even minimal “protection” to the environment should be entrusted with leading such an agency.
President-elect Trump, you have promised economic development. Like you, we value a stable and prosperous economy. However, a thriving economy depends on a healthy environment. The more we weaken and dismantle the E.P.A.’s vital protections of our natural world, the more we threaten the common good.
You have also promised to strengthen our national defense. Like you, we value national security. However, our country’s top military intelligence have concluded that climate change is a “threat multiplier” that is already creating instability around the world and will likely create significant security challenges in the years ahead. If someone who casts doubt on the reality of climate change becomes the head of the E.P.A., our national security will be compromised.
As citizens of this beloved country, we intend to write our members of Congress, urging them to block the nomination of Scott Pruitt to lead the E.P.A. We will pray for a better choice.
And we will continue to pray for you as you assume this office of tremendous responsibility for the good of all.
The Rt. Rev. Douglas J. Fisher, Bishop Diocesan of Western Massachusetts
The Rt. Rev. Alan M. Gates, Bishop Diocesan of Massachusetts
The Rt. Rev. Gayle E. Harris, Bishop Suffragan of Massachusetts
The Rt. Rev. Barbara C. Harris, Bishop Suffragan of Massachusetts (retired)
The Rt. Rev. Roy F. Cederholm, Bishop Suffragan of Massachusetts (retired)