RELIGION

Iowa Catholic leaders to pressure 2016 field to heed Francis' teachings on climate, economics

  • FILE - In this June 24, 2015, file photo, Pope Francis waves to the faithful as he arrives for his weekly general audience, in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican. Roman Catholic leaders in the early voting state of Iowa will call July 2, on candidates for president to follow the teachings of Pope Francis and focus as much on the environment and income inequality in 2016 as they have in past elections on opposing gay marriage and abortion. (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca, File)

    FILE - In this June 24, 2015, file photo, Pope Francis waves to the faithful as he arrives for his weekly general audience, in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican. Roman Catholic leaders in the early voting state of Iowa will call July 2, on candidates for president to follow the teachings of Pope Francis and focus as much on the environment and income inequality in 2016 as they have in past elections on opposing gay marriage and abortion. (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • Kirk Kraft, who works for Iowa based wind farm developer RPMAccess, speaks during a news conference, Thursday, July 2, 2015, in Ankeny, Iowa. Roman Catholic leaders in Iowa are calling for presidential candidates to focus on the environment and income inequality in 2016. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

    Kirk Kraft, who works for Iowa based wind farm developer RPMAccess, speaks during a news conference, Thursday, July 2, 2015, in Ankeny, Iowa. Roman Catholic leaders in Iowa are calling for presidential candidates to focus on the environment and income inequality in 2016. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)  (The Associated Press)

  • Bishop Martin Amos, of the Diocese of Davenport, left, and Bishop Richard Pates, of the Diocese of Des Moines, right, listen to Lonnie Ellis speak during a news conference, Thursday, July 2, 2015, in Ankeny, Iowa. Roman Catholic leaders in Iowa are calling for presidential candidates to focus on the environment and income inequality in 2016. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

    Bishop Martin Amos, of the Diocese of Davenport, left, and Bishop Richard Pates, of the Diocese of Des Moines, right, listen to Lonnie Ellis speak during a news conference, Thursday, July 2, 2015, in Ankeny, Iowa. Roman Catholic leaders in Iowa are calling for presidential candidates to focus on the environment and income inequality in 2016. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)  (The Associated Press)

Roman Catholic leaders in Iowa will call for candidates for president to follow the teachings of Pope Francis, and focus as much on the environment and income inequality in 2016 as they have in past elections on opposing gay marriage and abortion.

Bishop Richard Pates of Des Moines says the vocal pivot to be made Thursday will mark the first time a U.S. Catholic bishop has publicly asked those seeking the White House to heed the admonitions of Francis' first encyclical.

In it, the pope called for a "bold, sweeping revolution" to correct what he sees as a "structurally perverse" economic system that has turned the Earth into an "immense pile of filth."

Says Pates: "The goal of the pope is to raise the questions with all the candidates."