Today, the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) released an updated report on how climate change impacts the most vulnerable people around the world. “Loving the Least of These: Addressing a Changing Environment” explores the biblical basis for Christian engagement, the science of climate change, how climate change affects the poor, and practical ways to respond.
“At the National Association of Evangelicals, we believe that the good news of Jesus encompasses all of life and empowers us to face the deepest challenges,” NAE President Walter Kim said. “We wish to navigate the complexities of our times, including issues like climate change, with biblical clarity and a deep love that reflects God’s own heart for this world, especially for those least able to enjoy its blessings.”
The original version of “Loving the Least of These” was published in 2011 after extensive review from scientific and evangelical advisors. This revised 2022 version was created in partnership with World Relief and the Evangelical Environmental Network, and includes updated science and examples, as well as new articles from contributing authors. Dorothy Boorse, professor of biology at Gordon College, served as lead author for both reports.
Boorse said, “Climate change can be confusing in the media, but it is an issue that cannot be ignored. We labored to present a clear, well-supported document that can help Christian leaders and laypersons understand the science and how disruptions in the environment affect the poor and our role as stewards of God’s creation.”
Myal Greene, president and CEO of World Relief, said, “At World Relief, we have firsthand experience working with people facing the devastating effects of climate change. We have learned that if we want to be a catalyst for change that lasts, we have to address the root causes of poverty and not just offer temporary solutions. Climate change is one of the great injustices of our time, because people living in vulnerable communities experience the devastation brought on by the way people living in wealthier countries live our lives. As Christians, our love for the least of these compels us to acknowledge how our actions have contributed to climate change and to take steps to reverse its devastating effects.”
In the report, Mitch Hescox and Jessica Moerman, leaders of the Evangelical Environmental Network, explore how pollution impacts health, particularly of children, and demonstrate how environmental risks disproportionately impact poor and minority communities.
Contributing authors include Walter Kim, NAE president; Myal Greene, president and CEO of World Relief; Mitch Hescox, president of the Evangelical Environmental Network; Jessica Moerman, vice president of science and policy of the Evangelical Environmental Network; Bishop Timothy Clarke, senior pastor of First Church of God in Columbus, Ohio; Thomas Ackerman, professor emeritus of atmospheric sciences at the University of Washington; Christopher Shore, chief development officer of economic empowerment of World Vision USA; Jenny Yang, senior vice president of advocacy and policy of World Relief; Lanre Williams-Ayedun, senior vice president for international programs of World Relief; and Galen Carey, NAE vice president of government relations.