New York's Union Theological Seminary voted unanimously to become the world’s first seminary to divest from fossil fuels, taking with it the school’s $108.4 million endowment and calling the globe's addiction to oil "profoundly sinful."
The move follows the divestments of dozens of churches around the world and a call from Pope Francis for Christians to become better stewards of the earth in an effort to slow the "catastrophic threat" of climate change.
“Scripture tells us that all of the world is God’s precious creation, and our place within it is to care for and respect the health of the whole. Climate change poses a catastrophic threat, and as stewards of God’s creation we simply must act,” Union President Serene Jones said in a press release Tuesday.
About 100 religious institutions, universities, cities, counties and other organizations have divested or begun divesting from fossil fuels, according to the press release.
“As a seminary we are familiar with the scriptural warning that ‘the wages of sin is death,’ and this could not be more literally true than it is in the case of fossil fuels,” Jones wrote in an op-ed for Time magazine.