Archdiocese of Seattle Open Divestment Letter
Join the Creation Care Network in encouraging the Archdiocese of Seattle to divest its financial holdings from fossil fuels by signing on to the letter below (you can read the letter in PDF form here). We are collecting both institutional sign-ons, as well as individual signatures. If you are signing on behalf of an institution, please check the “Institutional” option before proceeding. If you would like to sign for both, please fill out the form twice accordingly.

Creation Care Network
c/o Intercommunity Peace and Justice Center
1216 NE 65th St
Seattle, WA 98115
October 4, 2022

The Most Reverend Archbishop Paul Etienne
Archdiocese of Seattle
710 Ninth Avenue
Seattle, WA 98104-2017

Dear Archbishop Etienne,

Blessings to you in this Season of Creation, as Catholics across the world celebrate the wonders of our planet and commit to taking action in support of the goals of Laudato Si’. Thank you for your ongoing support of climate justice projects in the Archdiocese, both in your words and in your actions. We were especially grateful for your presence at the “Planting Seeds of Hope: Taking Action for Our Common Home” conference at Seattle University in March. We would also like to applaud you and the Archdiocese for the Catholic Real Estate Initiative sale of Archdiocesan property to Westbank, creating the First Hill District Energy System. This carbon-neutral real estate plan is a concrete example of the Archdiocese’s commitment to a greener Seattle, and indeed, a greener world.

During this Season of Creation, the Creation Care Network is encouraging its member parishes to educate parishioners about the moral imperative to divest personal and company assets from fossil fuel companies. As the principal holder of parish assets (nearly $84 million in 2021), we ask for a review of all Archdiocesan investments, followed by a plan for the divestment from all fossil fuel companies and funds and a redirection of these investments towards green, zero-carbon companies and climate solutions.

This action is in line with USCCB Socially Responsible Investment Guidelines (Policy V) as well as Vatican recommendations. In June 2020, the Vatican issued its first-ever set of comprehensive environmental guidelines, entitled Journeying Towards Care for Our Common Home: Five Years After Laudato Si’. These Vatican guidelines recommend that Catholic organizations avoid investment in fossil fuel companies, as part of an ‘indispensable energy transition’ to clean and renewable energy.

More than 330 Catholic institutions from around the world have already committed to divestment, and in July, another 35 faith organizations, including seven dioceses, announced total divestment from fossil fuels. We hope that the Archdiocese of Seattle will soon join these visionary institutions taking prophetic action on the greatest moral issue of our time.

If this review of Archdiocesan investments is already occurring or is planned, we thank you and offer our support of prayers. If you would like to read more about ways that other institutions are divesting, as a practical matter, we would recommend the Laudato Si’ Movement’s divestment resources and Fossil Free’s step-by-step guide to divestment.

Given on the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi, 2022

 Organized by the Creation Care Network and sponsored by St. Joseph Parish, and the Intercommunity Peace & Justice Center
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