The encyclical letter Laudato Si is available here on the Vatican website. The second theme covered in Chapter Three’s third section is “The need to protect employment.” Pope Francis is speaking about more than simple “jobs.” Labor is a greater principle, involving the expression of a person’s God-given abilities to contribute to that “fabric” of existence. Perhaps our occasional dim view of “work” is due in part to the well-acknowledged excesses of corporate employers, not to mention a lack of personal discernment.
124. Any approach to an integral ecology, which by definition does not exclude human beings, needs to take account of the value of labor, as Saint John Paul II wisely noted in his Encyclical Laborem Exercens. According to the biblical account of creation, God placed man and woman in the garden he had created (cf. Gen 2:15) not only to preserve it (“keep”) but also to make it fruitful (“till”). Laborers and craftsmen thus “maintain the fabric of the world” (Sir 38:34). Developing the created world in a prudent way is the best way of caring for it, as this means that we ourselves become the instrument used by God to bring out the potential which he himself inscribed in things: “The Lord created medicines out of the earth, and a sensible (person) will not despise them” (Sir 38:4).