Pope Francis has invited us all, invited the world in all its varieties and contradictions, to read, ponder and comment on the carefully crafted forty thousand words of his Encyclical, Laudato Si’: On Care for our Common Home. In the opening lines of the long, varied and challenging document he addresses us in these words.
In this Encyclical, I would like to enter into dialogue with all people about our common home. . . I urgently appeal for a new dialogue about how we are shaping the future of our planet. We need a conversation which includes everyone, since the environmental challenge we are undergoing, and its human roots, concern and affect us all.
Francis is a sophisticated world citizen, has a talented staff of thinkers and writers, and we can be quite sure that he and his team have anticipated just about any challenge or criticism that a feisty world can come up with. After all he is a Jesuit, a disciplined Christian tribe long accustomed to doing their homework before opening their mouths. So now that we have published the full text of the Encyclical and invited comment here in the pages of World Streets, we will now turn floor over to critical and other appreciations, exactly as Francis has asked. (You will also find extensive commentary and debate in our parallel Facebook site, The Citizens Mobility Forumat https://www.facebook.com/EquityInitiative.)
Now that the painstakingly framed words of the encyclical are firmly in place, and as such already speaking for themselves and the ideas and proposals he sets out, exposing the eventual blind spots and lacunae of the proclamation, it is time now to accept his generous invitation and start to read, ponder and reason together carefully so that we can find ways best to put this important initiative to work for the causes of the planet, well-being, efficiency, social justice, and fairness to our children and future generations.
In this Battle of Ideas section, we will be looking at this interesting initiative from many angles.