POPE FRANCIS

POPE FRANCIS

by MARGO SNYDER

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Overview

P0PE FRANCIS AND THE ENVIRONMENT
If good science supports manmade global warming, that gives Catholics (and everyone else) reason to believe it. If good science opposes manmade global warming, that gives everyone reason to disbelieve it.
Furthermore, since the results of science are always provisional and open to revision--with the "scientific orthodoxy" of one generation frequently replaced in the next generation--people on both sides of the question should hold their views with proper reserve and openness to revising them.
This is thus a subject on which there can be a legitimate diversity of opinion among Catholics and among people in general.
11) Why would the pope take up a scientific matter like this?
Because science has practical and moral consequences. If the science of the day points to factors that may cause immense suffering in the future, there is a moral and practical need to address that fact.
Pope Francis feels that present science is sufficiently strong to warrant sounding the alarm bell in this regard.
12) Can I just dismiss the encyclical if I don't believe in manmade global warming?
If you are a Catholic, no. Even if it deals in part with matters of a scientific nature, it also articulates matters of faith and morals upon which the pope can speak, and is speaking, authoritatively.
Because this document involves more of a mix of the religious and the scientific than most Church documents, believers may need to think more carefully than usual about which propositions belong to which category, but one cannot simply dismiss what the pope says on matters of Church teaching.
Indeed, believers should not adopt a hostile attitude toward this document. Even if they hold different views on some of the scientific matters the pope touches on, they should seek to find as much as possible in the document that is good and useful.
13) Does the pope say things that are critical of the standard secular environmentalism that is popular in the media?
Yes. Among other things, he rejects approaches that:Treat mankind as if it is fundamentally harmful to the environment Fail to take into account human needs, especially those of the poor
Blame the world's environmental problems on population growth Seek to justify abortion on environmental grounds

There is much more to be said about Laudato Si', but because of space restrictions, it must wait for another time.
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Jimmy Akin is an internationally known author and speaker. As the senior apologist at Catholic Answers, he has more than twenty years of experiencing defending and explaining the Faith.
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Product Details

BN ID: 2940150935129
Publisher: M.M.Snyder
Publication date: 06/27/2015
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 585 KB

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