Commentaries

A papal call to action on the environment

The great Catholic tradition of social justice is at risk if Catholics fail to connect in the policy arena with all the social issues of our day, especially those related to the environment, writes Father William Byron.

How a 1950s theologian formed the basis of ‘Laudato Si’

Father Eugene Hemrick examines the thought of Father Romano Guardini, an influence on Pope Francis and his encyclical on the environment.

Resistance to Pope Francis’ encyclical

Big companies and politicians are downplaying or attacking the environmental encyclical, Laudato Si, writes Father Eugene Hemrick. He hopes its prudent questions lead to greater knowledge.

Pope’s encyclical called ‘a watershed moment for church, humanity’

"It's time for the church to be bold -- to speak about major issues -- and to achieve a new level of relevance in people's lives," Archbishop Cupich said.

Local theologian offers 14-facet view on encyclical

Redemptorist Father Dennis Billy, a moral theologian at St. Charles Seminary, describes points that readers of Laudato Si should remember.

Local Catholics praise papal tome on environment

From Archbishop Chaput to Sister Mary Scullion to a moral theology professor at St. Charles Seminary, Catholic leaders are weighing in with their initial reflections on a papal document that is already one of the most discussed encyclicals issued in modern times.

Religious and civic leaders: Maybe si, maybe no on Laudato

Varied religious leaders offered mixed reviews of the papal letter on the environment. The Dalai Lama spoke praise while a Protestant minister said there is "no alternative to dependency on fossil fuels."

U.S. Catholic leaders laud encyclical on environment

Prelates and other leaders praised the document for putting "a human face" on environmental issues and for starting "a new conversation" about protecting all of creation.

Church leaders see encyclical as opening new wave of climate action

Pope Francis aims to touch the hearts of people so that they act to stem climate change and change their lifestyle to reduce negative impacts on the planet in his encyclical on the environment, said a priest at the Pontifical Catholic University of Argentina.

Encyclical comes at crucial time with message for all, speakers say

There is "food for thought" for everyone in the text, and not liking something one reads in it is not an excuse to dismiss the whole document as irrelevant, some speakers said.