Encyclical reviews ignore teaching on human ecology

Dear Editor, What has Laudato Si achieved? The Pope’s intent is to address the dignity and duties of life in the created order. There are arguably three achievements. Firstly, he lends a ‘Pope Francis’ tag of support to the prevailing, secular, fashionable, ‘green’ worst-case contentions, not yet backed by a scientific consensus.

Second, two main culprits – global capitalism and its denizen control-orientated technocrats are stridently arraigned. They and the inhabitants of the developed world are typically God-forgetful; their “understanding of human life… has gone awry”. They create the global social, economic and ecological problems.

Third, amidst fitting exhortations to Governments (already ‘on the case’) to undertake the difficult complex appropriate initiatives, the Church does not “presume to… replace politics”. However the Vatican has engaged one atheist to guide the appropriate economics, to educate the world on building honest dialogue and transparent decision-making. Hopefully she will succeed where managers of the synod last October failed.

Significantly, many reviews ignore/minimise the Pope’s central concern regarding God-forgetfulness. Indeed there are some who impute virtual infallibility to papal commentary on physical science while ignoring genuinely infallible teaching on the human ecology inherent in contraception, abortion and marriage.

The encyclical contains a gentle enticement to conversion to Catholicism. But the necessary biblical-covenant-based catechetical content isn’t there in sufficient volume to ignite a follow-on global evangelisation on the common good. Catechesis on life-attitudes akin to those of Ss Josemaria Escriva and Therese of Liseaux is necessary.

The omission of the current human ecology disaster in the Middle East is a sad failure. These persecuted communities cannot fathom papal near-silence on their enslavement. Laudato Si had massive publicity.

It should have been the instrument to highlight this particular unfashionable, human ecological holocaust to an indifferent, God-forgetful world.

Yours etc.,

Con Devree,

Cappamore, Co. Limerick.