Tuesday, June 16, 2015


Sandro Magister, an Italian Vaticanisto, published the pirated Italian version of Pope Francis encyclical yesterday to which the Vatican Press office said it was heinous of him to do so and now he is banned from Vatican press briefings as punishment, but I don't think forever. His blog is very good and those in high places in the Vatican read it. He is also a journalist and writes for an Italian newspaper as well.

But the Encyclical is now out there prior to it formal debut which was suppose to be on Thursday and commentary galore is taking place.

Pope Francis is not to be ignored by the world, secularists and those opposed to the Church as Pope Benedict unfortunately was. Pope Francis has placed the Vatican front and center once again on the world stage and this is as it historically has been until secularism with its evil agenda began to ignore the Church. In this regard, Pope Francis and his style of papacy has been not only revolutionary but genius!


Let me be clear, if the Pope endorses a particular scientific point of view that is or has been politicized, then we can read it and choose to agree or disagree but doing so in a non dogmatic way. We don't have to give assent to any bishop's political point of view but we do have to allow for popes and bishops to have political perspectives. We all do!

So if Pope Francis says all fossil fuels are evil. God bless him. I can disagree and in the most polite way possible. I do not have to have a guilty conscience about using gasoline. But I will consider purchasing a hybrid auto and  when electric ones are perfected and reasonably priced I'd buy one!

Make no mistake, fossil fuels are big business and eliminating the need for these threatens very powerful people who would go to war to preserve their wealth.


But here is Crux's take on the pope's Eco-encyclical:

The pope’s eco-encyclical is likely to stir a hornet’s nest

ROME — Pope Francis offered up a prayer Sunday for his forthcoming encyclical letter on the environment, asking God’s blessing so that “everyone can receive its message.” Judging by the climate before the document even appears, however, achieving that prayer may take a miracle.

In one sign of ferment, the Italian magazine l’Espresso on Monday posted a draft version of Laudato Si, the title of the encyclical, three days before its official Thursday release date. The Vatican called the leak “heinous” and suspended the press credentials of the reporter, veteran Vatican watcher Sandro Magister. The head of the German-speaking department of Vatican Radio called it “sabotage” by someone who wants to undermine the pope’s message.

If it was, indeed, an attempt to undermine the encyclical, “l’Espresso” would not be the first one out of the gate.

Former US senator and Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum, for instance, is a devout Catholic who has said he loves the pope, but has also called global warming a “hoax” and the research underlying findings of climate change “junk science”.

In a recent interview, Santorum advised Francis to “leave science to the scientists” and focus instead on theology and morality. The suggestion was that the pontiff, who studied chemistry as a student, has no business pronouncing on something that exceeds his competence. (This comment was the impetus for an Internet meme that claimed Pope Francis holds a master’s degree in chemistry, later debunked.)

Another climate change skeptic, US Sen. James Inhofe of Oklahoma, chairman of the Senate’s committee on the environment, told a like-minded audience last week, “The pope ought to stay with his job, and we’ll stay with ours.” He continued, “I am not going to talk about the pope. Let him run his shop, and we’ll run ours.”
To be sure, there’s tremendous excitement in other quarters about the encyclical. Already the document has prompted global rallies and publicity campaigns, including a Hollywood-esque trailer titled “The Encyclical” that’s gone viral on the Web.

It’s also inspired American Rabbi Arthur Waskow to write “A Rabbinic Letter on the Climate Crisis,” addressed “to all the Jewish People, to all the communities of spirit, and to the world.”
Even the Buddhist leader Dalai Lama jumped on the bandwagon, sending out a message to his 11.2 million Twitter followers on Monday:

Although there was no reference to Laudato Si or the pontiff in the tweet, this was the first time in more than a year that the Dali Lama referred to environmental issues.

Even those most enthusiastic, however, concede that the encyclical letter is likely to stir a hornet’s nest of controversy.

Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez Maradiaga of Honduras, who says he’s already read the encyclical, described it as “delightful text” that will put “a finger on the pulse” on issues such as the “responsibility of large corporations in the punishment they’re inflicting on the planet.”

Rodriguez heads a council of nine cardinals that advises the pope. Speaking in Spain on June 12, he said the encyclical will be “a great shock” that will make everyone think. Local papers reported he “laughed” at those who are attacking the document before they’ve even read it.

Nonetheless, Rodríguez acknowledged that it’s bound to generate criticism. He even cited specific places where that blowback is likely to originate, citing the United States and China as “the most environmentally damaging countries.”

Speaking in Rome last month, the cardinal blasted “movements in the United States” hostile to the pontiff’s environmental stance.

“The ideology surrounding environmental issues is too tied to a capitalism that doesn’t want to stop ruining the environment because they don’t want to give up their profits,” Rodríguez said.

One of those groups, the Chicago-based Heartland Institute, told Crux in an e-mail that they “will be reaching out to hundreds of thousands of Catholics with our opinion about the pope’s encyclical — contacts we have gathered since our trip to Rome in April,” referring to their protest of a Vatican conference about fighting climate change.

Bill Patenaude, a lecturer in theology at Providence College and a veteran official with Rhode Island’s Department of Environmental Management, forecast that the secular left may be just as nervous as the pro-business right when its partisans get around to actually reading the document.
“The environmental movement has been led by the left, often the very progressive left, for decades,”
Patenaude told Crux, saying it’s “no wonder” many conservatives think the liberal version of ecology is the only one.

“This is not the case, as St. John Paul II, Benedict XVI and now Francis are telling us,” Patenaude said, predicting that Laudato Si will challenge impressions of environmentalism as a classically “leftist” cause.

To some extent, the political tug-of-war over the encyclical is understandable, given that Francis himself has said he wants it to have real-world policy implications.

Earlier this year, he said he wanted to see it published before a UN-sponsored agreement on Sustainable Development Goals and a UN summit on climate change in Paris later this year.

According to a Church source familiar with the document, the great novelty is that “it comes from a shepherd who’s thinking of all those who are his.”

The source, who asked not to be named because he is not authorized to discuss the encyclical, said Francis is seeking “a more integral ecology that’s all-inclusive and comprehensive.”

The idea, the source said, is that everyone – from someone passionate about the trees or drinkable water, to ordinary people living in ordinary neighborhoods, to someone who works on ecological policy issues in New York or Washington – should feel “called to action.”

No one, the source said, should feel exempt from the pope’s indictment.

“No one should be able to say, ‘I have a clean conscience because it’s not addressed to me’,” he said.
For Patenaude, the main political result of the letter may be to upset expectations of who can claim a “win” from it.

“Many of our conservative friends know they are going to be challenged by Laudato Si,” he said. “I don’t think many on the other side of the aisle are expecting to be challenged — but they will be.”
One such figure could be US Sen. Edward J. Markey, Democrat of Massachusetts and co-chairman of the Senate Climate Clearinghouse.

On Monday, after reports over the leaked draft appeared, Markey released a statement saying they reflect what the pontiff has said in the past: “That humanity has caused climate change, and we must take action now to address it.”

“I look forward to reading Pope Francis’s encyclical in full when it is officially released, and welcome this call to action to address the generational challenge of climate change,” Markey’s statement said.

Yet with Markey’s strong pro-choice voting record, he may not be quite as delighted with paragraph 120 of the encyclical – which, if the leaked version is correct, asserts that defense of nature is no justification for abortion.

(No spoiler alert is required for that one, since Pope Francis already has condemned abortion as a “horrific” practice.)

As Patenaude put it, the document will “shock, delight, and challenge” just about everyone.

Crux national reporter Michael O’Loughlin contributed to this report.


Cletus Ordo said...

No vitriol here. Just another shrug of the shoulders and shake of the head.

Anonymous said...

Others have said it before me: surely there are more important things for the Pope to be writing about. Don't we have enough time and money spent on saving the earth? What about saving the starving people? What about the millions of babies killed by abortion? What about the elderly who have no one to care for them?

Shouldn't thought be given to the fact that, long before the earth passes away from climate change, society is likely to collapse under the pressure of violence, hatred, immorality and greed? Wouldn't mankind benefit more from an encyclical of this nature? Or is that just to hard? Isn't it taking the easy way out to jump on the climate change bandwagon rather than address the hard, serious issues facing society that are not popular issues? I have to say that Pope Benedict getting involved with environmental issues I saw as the lowlight of his pontificate.


Jacob said...

Father, I have no interest in this encyclical, and will not read it. It will have no affect on my life. I think the man in the pew could care less. In a couple of weeks no one will even talk about it except the parish "ministry of people who have too much time on their hands"

Square, Uncool Catholic said...

Contrary to popular belief, Galileo got himself in trouble, not for teaching science or espousing a controversial theory, but for taking his scientific findings into the theological realm (and provoking Pope Urban VIII). He also failed to definitively prove his theory, although it was later proven. It would seem that given a history of such scientific caution, any pope would be hesitant to publish such definitive and politically explosive ideas in a document as serious as an encyclical. Now a pope is taking a controversial theory that many consider unproven and plunging headfirst into the theological realm with it. I'm afraid such a move begs far more questions than it answers.

Anonymous said...

"Embracing" yourself?

Anonymous said...

"As Patenaude put it, the document will 'shock, delight, and challenge' just about everyone."

1) Correct me if I am wrong, but are not Popes required to uphold, define and defend Catholic teaching, not create new teachings out of thin air?

2) If such is the case, we have had over 2,000 years for the public to know what the Church teaches, so nothing a pope says or writes should come a shock to anyone?

3) If a pope actually WANT to shock his audience, then…Oh, never mind. I won't go there.

Православный физик said...

As I've said, I'll wait until the actual encyclical comes out before making any judgements. That said if it dares to cross orthodox physics, it will quickly reach the round file cabinet with spherical pieces of paper.

Square, Uncool, Catholic is absolutely correct on Galileo.

Jan, I agree, getting on the side of the enviorwhackoists was not a good move on Pope Benedict XVI's part.

James said...

I'm impressed with what I've heard of the encyclical so far, particularly with the way in which climate change is woven into a broader critique of the social and economic problems of the present (including abortion as part of the throw-away culture).

I can see why people are troubled by the direction that the encyclical is taking: whatever else it is, it clearly isn't a model encyclical, and maybe it would have been better for the Pope to publish it as a book rather than part of the magisterium.

It seems odd that Sandro Magister leaked the document, when he knew that it would make him persona non grata at the Vatican. It seem likely to me that the leak went to his editor at l'espresso, who then just asked SM to introduce it. Either way, the move has backfired, if the aim was to reduce the impact of the encyclical.

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

Teaching about our environment is not coming "out of thin air."

It begins with Scripture: "The earth is the Lord’s and all that it holds.”

Pope John Paul II said: “We cannot interfere in one area of the ecosystem without paying due attention both to the consequences of such interference in other areas and to the wellbeing of future generations.”

John Paul II stated, “There is a growing awareness that world peace is threatened not only by the arms race, regional conflict, and injustices among people and nations, but also by a lack of due respect for nature, by the plundering of natural resources which leads to a progressive decline in the quality of life. The sense of precariousness and insecurity that such a situation engenders is a seedbed for collective selfishness, disregard for others and dishonesty.”

PEACE WITH GOD THE CREATOR, PEACE WITH ALL OF CREATION." 1 January 1990. Here's the clincher, "13. Modern society will find no solution to the ecological problem unless it takes a serious look at is lifestyle. In many parts of the world society is given to instant gratification and consumerism while remaining indifferent to the damage which these cause. As I have already stated, the seriousness of the ecological issue lays bare the depth of man's moral crisis. If an appreciation of the value of the human person and of human life is lacking, we will also lose interest in others and in the earth itself. Simplicity, moderation and discipline, as well as a spirit of sacrifice, must become a part of everyday life, lest all suffer the negative consequences of the careless habits of a few."

Pope Benedict 16 stated, “If we wish to build true peace, how can we separate or even set at odds, the protection of the environment and the protection of human life.”

Concern for the environment as a moral obligation is not being created "out of thin air."

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Publishing it as a book and then with a disclaimer on it similar to the books Pope Benedict published that one could debate and disagree, would have been a stroke of genius. But alas...

Angry Augustinian said...

There is no Biblical basis for “green awareness,” environmental hand-wringing, or eco-theology. None. There is no Biblical concept for the earth as “mother” or some benign spirit. In the OT, the Assyrians worshipped several “earth goddesses,” all of whom were wives of Baal, interestingly enough. I forget their names…(maybe Hillary or Nancy). Other semitic races in Mesopotamia also worshipped earth and sky deities, and you remember how Israel dealt with those people, hmmmm? The Israelites believed that earthly events were a direct result of sin or apostasy…if the earth would not yield or if there were earthquakes, etc. it was because of human sin, as also evidenced in Genesis. In the OT, the earth belongs to God and His will, and His will alone, determines what happens there.

In the NT, there is even less basis for “saving the earth.” Christ is pretty clear in His teachings, in Matthew particularly, that this earth will be destroyed and a new one created. The earth was “submitted to futility” along with man, according to Paul, because of original sin. He tells us that the “form of this world is passing away,” and that human will is incapable of altering this. Our concern should be for our souls and the souls of those unsaved. And, of course, the culmination of this we see in John’s Apocalypse when we share his beatific vision of all things being made new.

The old “good stewardship” argument doesn’t work too well, although I suppose it could be manipulated into some kind of vague environmental nonsense. The OT concept of stewardship is primarily for stewardship of the household and of the Mysteries of the Faith (maybe the Pope should be reviewing how well those have been maintained). In the NT, stewardship refers primarily to time, talent, treasure, and self. There is no mention of stewardship of the earth…and why should there be? It is already subjected to futility and passing away. Paul re-connects with the OT concept of stewardship of the Mysteries of the Faith in 1 Corinthians and Galatians.
He reminds us, “set your hope on things that are above, not on things of the earth.”

Does this mean that we should abuse the earth or ignore problems? Of course not, But it is a matter of earthly common sense and not a theological issue. It is hardly the proper subject for an encyclical from the Vicar of Christ, for heaven’s sake, while there is a crisis of belief in the Church, the family and the faith are under attack from all sides and within, and the number of lost souls increases daily. In short, it is very bad theology.

Lefebvrian said...

I am interested to read this encyclical, and I will not prejudge it now. I am disappointed that it is so long, though. I hope the popes back off this very recent trend of issuing such lengthy encyclicals.

Vox Cantoris said...

The eruption of Mount Pinatubo put more "greenhouse gas" into the atmosphere than the entire Industrial Revolution. There are fossils of tropical ferns in northern British Columbia and in Alaska. Greenland was once tropical. This is scientific fact. Climate change is scientific fact. It is not caused by man, nor can it be stopped by man. To even think that we can is to make us into gods and that we are not. It is arrogant, prideful and a lie from Malthusians, Communists and Globalists and an assorted Shriner or two.

Angry Augustinian said...

Vox, yep, them Shriners…polluting the air with those little mini-motorcycles they ride around in parades. LOL!

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

Do Volcanoes Generate More Greenhouse Gas Than Humans?
Is the rumor about volcanoes and greenhouse gases true? Not even close.

Rood Screen said...

It was leaked like oil from a tanker. But then someone gathers up some of that oil, only to be banished for the act of gathering and recycling.

Square, Uncool Catholic said...

Well, A.A., I don't think it's fair to mock V.C. for naming Shriners along with these other fringe types. Lest we forget, they are part of Freemasonry, which has been consistently condemned by the Church. I would also add the the Church-approved apparitions at La Salette explicitly name Freemasonry as one of the problems the Church must deal with.

I know, I know, but the mockery here is a bit uncalled for.

Lefebvrian said...

If says it, it must be true.

Anonymous said...

Vox and deniers....I'm pretty sure it's true that over 90% of the world's most learned scientists agree that climate change is taking place and that we are causing it. (If you don't believe me, look it up.)

Doctors are scientists. Let's say that you discover a lump on your neck. You go to the Mayo Clinic. You are examined and tested. Nine doctors say that you have a malignant tumor and that it should be removed at once. One Doctor, however, says...
"It's just a lump...just nature...if it is cancer, there's probably nothing we can do about it. Just go on home and don't worry about it." Which advice would you take?

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

I've already deleted some comments as they were disrespectful to Pope Francis and thus non-Catholic. We all have our favorite popes and desires for what the pope should do, but none of us has the authority to elect a pope or second guess him. That's Catholic.

For my part, and it is a part of my piety, I believe the Church is founded by Jesus Christ, the pope is His vicar and that the gates of hell shall not prevail against the papacy and thus the Church.

The Holy Spirit may well have given us Pope Francis and to denigrate that possibility would be to sin against the Holy Spirit. Pope Francis, warts and all, may be why the Holy Spirit gave us him and for a greater good that will be calculated years after his papacy.

We won't know completely though until the Last Judgement which is closer today than yesterday. So eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow....

Lefebvrian said...

We know that sin is sin -- if something is sinful, it must have always been sinful and will always be sinful. Furthermore, the entire purpose of the earth and all its resources is ordered toward the salvation of souls, and as Augustinian points out, the earth is passing away because it is not necessary once humanity is not present on it trying to reach salvation.

So we know that the earth is here for us, we are not here for the earth. So, we cannot "sin" against the earth. We can, however, sin against God (and thereby against ourselves and each other). It would be possible for certain "environmental" issues to be sinful, but not because they are environmental issues as such.

For example, if I were to dump toxic chemicals into a stream, I have sinned because I have harmed other humans, not the fish or the creation, but other people. If I throw a plastic cup into the lawn, I have arguably sinned through pride or lack of caring for the person who will be responsible for picking it up. Or, on a larger scale, if I ran a corporation that was contributing to the smog problem in Atlanta, which contributes to poor lung health, that would be sinful (assuming other conditions are met, of course). Etc.

So, you see, the sins here are no different than those things that are already sinful -- pride, negligence, bringing harm to others. These are not new sins against the environment, they are the same sins against God, others, and myself. And I think that is problem. People are now seeing the earth as an end in itself instead of a means to reach the end, which is salvation and God.

Latching onto Augustinian’s point, it might be possible to go so far as to say that the unwieldiness of the environment is a result of original sin, where "unwieldiness" means pollution in some sense. I think that’s an interesting idea, and perhaps, the pope will address it.

I have another thought, though, that Augustinian didn't address in his post although he may have gotten close in his refutation of the “stewardship” argument. In a sense, God set up the OT system of animal sacrifices as a punishment for the Israelite's idolatry. Basically, they were worshipping animals and what not, so God ordered them to sacrifice those same animals. This was both a penance and a corrective for their unbelief (as well as a type of the NT sacrifice of Christ). With that in mind, it seems to me that there is very great danger in turning anything "environmental" into an idol, which is they direction things are heading.
And that gets to the prudential problem of issuing such an encyclical, especially one that is so long no one will actually read it.

I expect that, whatever the pope writes, it will be reduced to proof-texts for whatever position and soundbites that don’t capture its real essence. We should all, therefore, be mindful of the necessity of reading the actual text.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Yes, reading the text and completely will be necessary. But unfortunately many prefer to read accounts of what the text says and from ideologues who evaluate it, either from the left or the right.

In addition to reading the text, I would listen first to the talking points that the Vatican gives and any interviews the Holy Father gives on it.

I am mixed about what causes global warming, but I am convinced we have a part in the destruction of the earth which is a sin.But yes weather patterns change and on their own. The ice age wasn't caused by the stone age nor the destruction of dinosaurs by man. It was a natural disaster! Destroying the rain forests is a sin. When Pittsburgh was so polluted that you couldn't see the sun because of it and it was causing people to be ill because manufacturers were spewing their filth into the air, that is a sin--and Pittsburgh dealt with it and this is no longer the case today.

The same is true of what First Lady, Lady Byrd Johnson did with "Keep America Beautiful" and the push to clean waterways, streets, highways and the like. It was great and thank God she did it. People thought nothing of throwing their trash out their car windows and leaving it in the parking lot of fast food restaurants.

At the Dairy Queen where I worked in the late 60's and very early 70's we had an outdoor incinerated, open topped and burned our trash in it with black smoke and embers going forth from it. I"m sure our neighbors must have loved it.

Let's get real here folks. The environment and care for it is important. We don't treat the earth as God but she sustains life. If we can make life better for everyone even 500 years from now but by starting now, we should. Thank God for this Encyclical although after I read it I might quibble with this, that or the other, but certainly not in a hysterical, political way like so many are doing and right here on this humble blog no less.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

I might add, that the three months I spent in Rome showed me how concern for the environment could have a positive effect. The other times I had been in Rome (briefly) smog from pollution was a terrible factor there and the air was acrid because of it. But they have leaped frog the USA in making the atmosphere there much better and I don't recall a polluted hazy day there once in the three months I was there. So yes, man can make things better when they try and we can certainly have a detrimental effect on air quality and life.

Lefebvrian said...

And here's another positive spin: would we rather have this pope writing about the environment (in an encyclical, by the way, with absolutely no Magisterial force) or writing a Magisterial encyclical on the liturgy or ecclesiology or ecumenism or some other "Church-y" topic?

Angry Augustinian said...

Very nicely put, Lefeb. A needed reminder that the earth is not an end in itself. Sin is sin, and environmental problems are a result of original sin and fundamentally insolvable for any number of reasons. Care for the environment is a matter of common sense and human awareness…it does not rise to the level of theology.

Anonymous said...

Wow, 25 comments and it's only 2:24. This looks like there will be at least 70 by nightfall.

MR said...

That is exactly what I was thinking. I was relieved when I first read that this encyclical would be about the environment because at least it keeps him away from topics like the marriage, ecumenism, liturgy, etc, like you said. Those are the areas where he could do real damage, so if he wants to spend his time and energy on the environment, I'll take it.

John Nolan said...

Pope Francis's popularity is not much in evidence in the secular media - the BBC pays no more attention to him than it did to his predecessor, and the anti-Catholic vitriol of the left-wing press has, if anything, increased. John Paul II, by contrast, was a media celebrity since his role in the Cold War was seen as pivotal. His doctrinal message was not so favourably received (not least by many senior churchmen) but he stated it uncompromisingly. For all his flaws he was the greatest pope of the twentieth century and undoubtedly the greatest man of his era.

Victor said...

With so many TLM lovers against the pope giving his best advice on how to treat God's wonderful gift of creation to mankind, the TLM ain't going far. Again, are those critics of the pope's views on the environment in USA TLM lovers who are also Republicans or/and Tea Party members?

Angry Augustinian said...

No, some of us are trained theologians who know bad theology when we see it and who actually read Holy Scripture with educated discernment. You are really hung up on this political party thing, aren't you?

Anonymous said...

I guess my concern is the way this encyclical could be misinterpreted by population control-types. I wish the pope would have written an encyclical on the poor before writing this one, but maybe he will in the future. Not necessarily against what he had written- human made pug ion must have an effect on the earth- it stands to reason. By again, I hope it doesn't get misinterpreted by the "who am I to judge" crowd.

Anonymous said...

Gosh're a TRAINED THEOLOGIAN? Why have you never mentioned it before? I would have given even more credence to your pronouncements....if that's possible...

Angry Augustinian said...

"Climate justice," wow. Next hurricane, maybe the Pope should lead a delegation right into the teeth of the storm with everyone singing "We Shall Overcome." The wealthy are responsible for the plight of the poor….hey, ya'll, remember when the Vatican sold off most of its wealth to help the poor…….me neither...

Angry Augustinian said...

I guess the good news is that most people are not going to take it seriously. Of course, you may feel some earth tremors from all the libs having orgasms but, other than that, it will most likely be ignored.

Angry Augustinian said...

Why isn't the Pope out making strong, prophetic statements about gay marriage and the Supreme Court like the head of the Southern Baptist Convention?

Paul said...

It is only stewardship that we take of the planet in feasible and prudent ways. Just to be certain, we were put on this planet by God so we belong here too. We are not an "invasive species".

To "take care of the planet" to promote an agenda of control, fees and fines through lies and deception (if there are lies and deception) all while running up trillions in debt (and in debt to the worst polluter on earth) is not good stewardship and is not as the "green folks" like to say: sustainable.

We cannot take care of ourselves as we plummet into the moral cesspool. What makes anyone think, ultimately, that we can treat Earth better?

Anonymous said...

I am looking foreword to Pope Francis encyclical on the environment. Here in the USA's political arenas, that field has been held hostage by the far left and extremely anti-Catholic liberal lobbies for far too long. It will encouraging for Catholic environmentalists to get support from their Pope for issues that they are aligned with and have worked on for decades. Catholic environmentalism does not exclude conservative traditional Catholics or go against their values, and that is one reason why this document is important.

Paul said...

AA, Because the Pope is not the "head" of the Southern Baptist Convention.

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

Those who, from the moment it was announced, have expressed opposition to Laudete Sii do so for two simple reasons.

It is not because they find no warrant for ecological concern in Sacred Scriptures - it is there.

It is not because they really think the pope's teaching has been made "out of thin air" - because it is not.

It is not because they think the pope is a Marxist - he is not.

It is 1) because they have determined to despise and object to anything that Pope Francis says or does because he is not Pope Benedict. And it is 2) because they know that the encyclical will challenge their own materialism and consumerism.

After all, as Scripture says, "The love of money (and what it buys) is the root of all evil."

Angry Augustinian said...

Well, Paul, I think the Pope might follow this protestant example…said protestantism being a true path to salvation according to the Pope…and get with the evangelical program instead of chasing after the latest Marxist ploy to bring down Capitalism, free enterprise, and Western culture.

Angry Augustinian said...

Kavanaugh, there is no basis in Holy Scripture for ecological concern…unless you squeeze the "stewardship" concept as I mentioned in my earlier post. It is simply foreign to the Biblical mentality…a wishful modernist reading into Scripture of today's cultural and political values and fads. This is simply bad theology, to which you are no stranger.

Anonymous said...

People with great wealth and power have done terrible damage to large tracks of the Third World what I saw, however was facilitated by governments supposedly cognizant over the land and care for the people. What I think is missing from the social justice tact is a dignified request to the creators of wealth of create better environments and proper husbandry of the earth. It always seems to be blind and ignorant condemnation. I will admit that many of the societies, Larin American chief among them, are so corrupt and the upper classes so convinced of their entitlement that radical changes often seem in order. But the contras thrive on the social division and often do more harm to the environment. I will read the encyclicals and try to be open minded. I hope the bishops will do the same.

Anonymous said...

If man is able to warm the planet then he should likewise be able to cool the planet? Probably a topic that Francis will explore in his scientific journal, or probably not. After all man(humankind) is so powerful that he/she is able destroy God's creation through his/her normal existence? I hope the pope studies this theological question as to whether it's likely that God created nature in such a fragile way that it can't support humankind's basic existence. In other words God kind of screwed up when He created Mother Earth and by humankind having too many farting cows around all God's creation will come tumbling down. Maybe it's wrong to have joyful faith in God that His creation is durable enough for us to enjoy responsibly.

I look forward to Franics' exhaustive scientific study that will be full of data and empirical evidence that Francis will document for us. I suspect it will be similar to the same documentation used by the learned bishops who authored the great economic pastoral letter on economics that contained not one chart, graph or table that confirmed the trends they claimed to be occurring.

People need to remember that if you care for the environment and love animals you're a good person and no one has the right to judge anything else you do.


Paul said...

AA, at some point people of sanity and conscience have a decision to make. Neither The Pope nor Christ's Church can make that decision for them. Is it a matter of information or about what "The Pope Says"? What a sorry state people are in. There are *plenty* of encyclicals concerning behavior, sexuality and morality if people would bother to read them. Most literate people do not read them and only pay attention to what the press feeds them. How many times have Papal Encyclicals been quoted or even cited in today's local homilies? From my experience, I can't recall an example. The Popes have said much. Are people waiting for The Pope to say something different?

Maybe many people have made up their minds and, willfully, do not want to read, listen or follow. Such is Free Will Choice. Maybe those same people are in contact and play major, formative roles in our children's lives. Children tend to follow by example. Witness the society that the "green agenda" promotes. These are people who tend to promote a spiritual sewer all while being concerned about Earthly cleanliness. It cannot be done. Without a change of heart they will utterly fail. We have to start by cleaning ourselves up, the Earth can then follow.

Concerning this encyclical certain people would like to compare Pope Francis to a modern-day Nero, who fiddled while Rome burned. Being prudent and helping with conditions that can produce clean air and water may improve and extend life. While there is life, there is time to change one's mind. While there is life, miracles can happen. While there is life, one can choose to follow in the footsteps of Christ.

With a mind focused on Christ, prudent, sensible and attainable methods of keeping The Earth's land, air and water clean promotes Faith, Hope and Charity to those most in need.

Maybe it is us.

Anonymous 2 said...

Jolly Angry:

“[T]here is no basis in Holy Scripture for ecological concern…unless you squeeze the "stewardship" concept as I mentioned in my earlier post. It is simply foreign to the Biblical mentality…a wishful modernist reading into Scripture of today's cultural and political values and fads. This is simply bad theology.”

Really? I expect Pope Francis will indicate the basis. In the meantime you might want to take a look at the following: (Article titled “The Bible is very clear about caring for environment”) (The Green Bible (2008))

Anonymous said...

I don't know how anyone can take climate change seriously when we can read articles like this:

"When future generations look back on the global-warming scare of the past 30 years, nothing will shock them more than the extent to which the official temperature records – on which the entire panic ultimately rested – were systematically “adjusted” to show the Earth as having warmed much more than the actual data justified.

Two weeks ago, under the headline “How we are being tricked by flawed data on global warming”, I wrote about Paul Homewood, who, on his Notalotofpeopleknowthat blog, had checked the published temperature graphs for three weather stations in Paraguay against the temperatures that had originally been recorded. In each instance, the actual trend of 60 years of data had been dramatically reversed, so that a cooling trend was changed to one that showed a marked warming.

This was only the latest of many examples of a practice long recognised by expert observers around the world – one that raises an ever larger question mark over the entire official surface-temperature record."

The taxes for the carbon footprint that are going to be levied will be crippling to the poor - taxes put on everything. I don't think a lot of people are aware what governments have planned for us. I think people are just too inclined to jump on the bandwagon of what is PC and cool without bothering to check if what they are being told is factually correct. In many cases it isn't.


Angry Augustinian said...

Anon 2, Allcreatures…the Green Bible…you have got to be kidding. What these people are doing is not theology, it is "proof texting" of the worst sort…taking Bible verses that mention animals or the earth and concluding, therefore, that the Bible must be a Greenpeace/Sierra Club manifesto. It is sort of like saying that, because Moby Dick is about a whale, it must mean that Melville was an environmentalist.
The sites you mention are laughable on the face of it, mostly a bunch of socialist kooks attempting to dabble in theology in order to make the Bible support their agenda. I actually laughed out loud while rewdaiung them.

Angry Augustinian said...

I think Lefebvrian made the signal point regarding this faux eco-theology yesterday…the earth is not an end in itself. Abusing the environment harms others and, therefore, is sinful because of its effects on our fellow men. But, that does not mean there is a theological basis for environmentalism in Scripture. The point is significant because proper Biblical theology is important and there is a tendency these days to make the earth a god.
Now, the inconsistencies of the environmentalist wackos are glaring…the pollution of the oceans and the destruction of rain forests are probably the two biggest threats to us all, people and animals. But, these actions are largely carried out by Third World and Asian "poor" countries. But, Leftists worship the poor, so they can't say anything but, instead, attack capitalism and the wealthy. Regarding the wealthy, be reminded that it isn't the "widow's mite" that has floated the Church all these centuries.
Biblical theology requires that there be a theo-logic throughout Holy Scripture that leads to certain doctrinal conclusions. For instance, the doctrine of the Trinity is not expressly stated in Scripture, but it is clear from Jesus' statements and from OT and NT evidence and accounts that the doctrine is real and true. There is an internal logic to it in Scripture that is irrefutable.
The same can be said for Doctrine of God, Doctrine of Reconciliation, Doctrine of Creation, etc. The internal logic of Holy Scripture unfailingly supports these teachings of the Church. When one looks for such logic for a "theology of ecology," it just is not there, so misguided scholars embarrassingly succumb to current fads and attempt to proof-text their way to such a theology. The implications of such wrong-headed theologizing are many and problematic.
Anyway, there are ample reasons of common sense for us to care for our environment. One does not need Scriptural support for ecological concern and, once again, the real theological issues are today's apostasy, unbelief, destruction of the family and moral values, and the attacks upon the faith from without and within. We indeed strain at gnats and swallow camels.

Lefebvrian said...

Despite what Fr. Kavanaugh says about those of us who are somewhat suspect of this pope's writings based on his track record, my principal concern with anything he says, does, or writes is that it has the potential to distort the Catholic faith and lead people into error. I'm infinitely less concerned about the earth's well being than I am my salvation, as well as that of my family and every other person on earth, even Fr. Kavanaugh.

As Jan pointed out in another post a few days back, this concern about distortion of the Faith isn't one that is only held by the so-called Traditionalists, it is also the concern of "regular" Carholics as well. In response to that, it is my strong belief that pastors should educate their flock on the papal doctrines so that the people can properly sift the wheat from the chaffe, the Truth from the falsity. A reliance on ultramontanist nonsense is not the correct viewpoint, especially considering that there are souls be saved by being taught the Truth.

With all that said, though, I maintain that we should not be prejudging this encyclical. And both sides are doing that right now - those who support it without knowing what it says are just as wrong as those decrying it without knowing what it says.

Just because a pope wrote it doesn't make it good and true.

Just because Pope Francis wrote it doesn't make it bad and false.

Anonymous 2 said...

Jolly Angry,

Once again you miss the point, deliberately as usual I suspect to score cheap rhetorical points. Whether or not the authors are “socialist kooks” is irrelevant to the point, which is of course to read and reflect upon the actual Scriptural passages and the other venerable pronouncements, including from Pope St. John Paul II, that are included in these materials. They provide, I believe, an answer to your contention that there is no theological basis for environmentalism in Scripture or Catholic Tradition. To dismiss these materials just because the authors may be “socialist kooks” is like dismissing Animal Farm or Nineteen Eight Four because George Orwell was a “socialist kook.”

See also Father Kavanaugh’s posting on the later thread “Ten Things.”

Angry Augustinian said...

I posted about this in another thread and will not repeat it. The fact that they are socialists kooks is quite important, however. It is disturbing that a Pope would cast his lot with them. But, nothing in the Church surprises me anymore. I went through this in protestantism and am having just a really huge deja vu. It is sad that the Church has ignored protestantism to the point of being unable to learn from their (protestantism's ) errors.