Laudato Si 54: International Weakness

Earth from Apollo 8The encyclical letter Laudato Si is available here on the Vatican website. Pope Francis criticizes the inability of nations to come together for more than meetings:

54. It is remarkable how weak international political responses have been. The failure of global summits on the environment make it plain that our politics are subject to technology and finance. There are too many special interests, and economic interests easily end up trumping the common good and manipulating information so that their own plans will not be affected.

One key point of discernment is how little interest these special interests have in the bigger picture, the common good. Latin american bishops are well-acquainted with corruption and shadowy influences in society. Let’s not think we of the north are immune:

The Aparecida Document urges that “the interests of economic groups which irrationally demolish sources of life should not prevail in dealing with natural resources”.[n. 471] The alliance between the economy and technology ends up sidelining anything unrelated to its immediate interests. Consequently the most one can expect is superficial rhetoric, sporadic acts of philanthropy and perfunctory expressions of concern for the environment, whereas any genuine attempt by groups within society to introduce change is viewed as a nuisance based on romantic illusions or an obstacle to be circumvented.

An accurate diagnosis. Or perhaps you disagree? Either way, feel free to comment.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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