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Pope Francis and the secretary-general of the United Nations (U.N.) delivered similar green messages on Wednesday to mark the 50th anniversary of Earth Day.
Francis admonished the world for failing to tackle climate change, claiming the Wuhan virus is nature's response for man's sins against earth.
Pope Francis: "We have sinned against the earth, against our neighbors and ultimately against the Creator. … If we have depleted the earth, deteriorated the earth, the response will not be good."
The pontiff made a plea for so-called ecological conversion and called for the world to unite to combat climate change.
Pope Francis: "At the same time, we need an ecological conversion that can find expression in concrete actions."
Echoing Francis, U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres said Wednesday: "Greenhouse gases, just like viruses, do not respect national boundaries. On this Earth Day, please join me in demanding a healthy and resilient future for people and planet alike."
To shape the recovery once the pandemic passes, Guterres suggested the world economy be realigned according to environmentalist principles.
Critics see his proposals for a post-pandemic "green recovery" as a vehicle for socialism.
Francis' pontificate is marked by a preoccupation with environmentalist and anti-capitalist themes.
His latest pronouncement on climate change — in line with the socialist ideology of the United Nations — is consistent with his track record.