OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — In January, Creighton University Junior Henry Glynn received an email that stopped him in his tracks.
"The subject line was 'Meeting with Pope Francis?' And that's how it started," he recalled.
That meeting would take place on Feb. 24 virtually, via Zoom teleconference. Pope Francis wanted to hear from college students around the world about their concerns. The group started larger, with approximately 130 students from 21 countries. Ultimately, the group narrowed to include 16 students: two had studied at Creighton. In addition to Glynn, recent graduate Emily Burke was selected for Building Bridges North-South: A Synodal Encounter Between Pope Francis and University Students.
"It's right in with the Pope's mode, but it's stunning," said Creighton University Professor of Theology Richard Miller, Ph.D. "This has never happened — the Pope speaking directly to college kids."
Glynn and Burke took the opportunity to discuss the intersection between the Church and climate change.
"It's a challenged institution in part because it's so large, but to have a bunch of young people together talking about it really kind of emphasized some of the issues that we brought up to Francis and I was really kind of encouraged by the way he responded," Glynn said.
He and Burke asked the Pope to encourage bishops to take action on climate issues within schools, hospitals and churches to reduce carbon and greenhouse gas emissions.
Pope Francis spoke to the importance of being sincere in all endeavors.
"Sincerity means you're heard. Sincerity really helps you to live in harmony with ecology with the rest of the world," he said.
To watch the forum in full, visit this link.