The Abbot of Fo Guang Shan Hsi Lai Temple Venerable Hui Dong was invited to attend the 2021 Parliament of World Religion Buddhist-Catholic Dialogue on Climate Change seminar on October 17.
This seminar was hosted by Father Michael Terrien of the Catholic Theological Union (Chicago) who invited Buddhist representative, Venerable Hui Dong, the Abbot of Hsi Lai Temple and Catholic representative Father Alexei Smith to participate in the seminar.
At the beginning of the seminar, the host invited both guests to express the importance of the religious community's concern about climate change issues. Father Alexei expressed his gratitude to Hsi Lai Temple for its long-term cooperation with various religious circles; especially, the Prayer for World Peace held at the beginning of each year which narrows the distance between religions in the Los Angeles area. The Archdiocese of Los Angeles is now working with Fo Guang Shan Hsi Lai Temple to take practical actions to care for the earth.
Venerable Hui Dong said, “It is a wonderful thing to cooperate with people of various religions and to care about our environment together. Buddhism has always advocated environmental protection, not only the protection of the external environment, but the environmental protection in the mind is also very important.” Therefore, the founder of Fo Guang Shan Venerable Master Hsing Yun began to advocate " Environmental Protection and Spiritual Preservation " in his keynote speech at the 2010 BLIA World Conference.
Father Alexei and Venerable Hui Dong also shared about the tree planting event organized by Catholicism and Buddhism on September 29, titled “An Interfaith Project: Plant a Tree, Save our Earth. “Father Alexei also mentioned that in the near future, there will be tree planting activities in several Catholic elementary, middle schools and university campuses within Los Angeles County. At that time, he hopes to invite representatives of various religions to witness this meaningful event.
It is hoped that through this seminar more religious groups will be able to participate in environmental protection and help to protect the earth.