Many continue to examine the motivating factors behind the promulgation of Laudato si’ (LS), the first “ecological” encyclical in the history of Church social teaching. The subject of LS goes far beyond the Catholic community and concerns every person who believes in a God who can act out of love, intervenes in history and delivers the gift of creation. And yet the question remains: should religious people get involved in a discussion about the environment, apparently so technical, and far-removed from faith?
Tag Archive for Catholic social teaching
Laudato si’ has been billed by many as Pope Francis’ intervention in the climate change debate, but it is so much more than that, says Damian Howard SJ. In this detailed analysis of the Pope’s first encyclical, he sets the text in its cultural and political context, and asks how it fits into the tradition of Catholic Social Teaching. How does this ‘exciting new synthesis’ of Catholic theology and the ecological movement have the potential to change our civilisation?
For Christians, water is both a necessarily fundamental ecological theme and also a spiritual symbol. These two perspectives are inseparable. Sharing water justice with wisdom is at the heart of environmental responsibility, and yet water is more than one natural resource among others: it evokes Christ himself who refers to himself as ‘living water’ and it evokes ways of new life, as in the sacrament of Baptism. Christian teaching has an immense range of references to the sacramental and symbolic dimensions founded in Scripture itself, evoked in the first theme. In the three following themes, this note will focus on the genre of more explicit ‘social teaching.’