Over at Laudato Si' Excerpted I'll be posting passages from the encyclical by Pope Francis several times a week for the next few months. Below is the introduction to the first installment.
When Pope Francis's encyclical letter Laudato Si' came
out, I was a bit befuddled by the media coverage, which claimed that the pope
had suddenly become an environmentalist, and also wrote about the poor, with a
sprinkling of traditional Catholic condemnations of things like artificial
birth control. Frankly, it sounded like
a pretty schizophrenic document (which, in any case, I didn't have time to
But I was again reminded of Laudato Si' when I came across
a Financial Times article about Yellowstone that asked, "Are humans part of nature, or
above it? Why do we care about setting
aside 'wild' lands such as Yellowstone?
Why do we care about the survival of wolves in the first place? Does nature and wildlife have intrinsic
value?" So I picked up the document
and was pleased to discover both insight and coherence.
You can read the first set of excerpts at Laudato Si' Excerpted.