Responsibility for Creation According to the Encyclical Letter of Pope's Francis "Laudato Si“

  • Violeta Gravrock Vytautas Magnus Univeristy
  • Eugenijus Danilevičius Vytautas Magnus Univeristy
Keywords: creation, responsibility for creation, ecological education, encyclical letter “Laudato Si”

Abstract

In this article the main features of the responsibility for the creation origins main features in the Bible are described and in accordance with pope Francis encyclical letter Laudato Si, revealed the main aspects of resopnsibility for the creation: creating peace, educating and ecological spirituality. Possibilities of using the responsibility for creation development recommendations which are provided in the encyclical „Laudato Si“ in education of religion also are anticipated in this article. The conclusions of this theoretical study are presented at the end of the article.

Pope Francis, continuing the works of his predecessors St. John Paul II and Benedict XVI, has released an encyclical letter dedicated to the link between nature and human ecology, about general home “Laudato Si”, in which he reveals the problems surrounding world‘s ecosystems and calls on Christians to take personal  responsibility  for  the  preservation  of  creation.  The  international  agreements  and  declarations  on  climate change emphasize that nature conservation is the most important task of humankind, providing with environmental guidelines and highlighting sustainable development. It must cover three main areas: environmental, social and economic, where all of them are interpreted equally and relations are based on the rational use, conservation, restoration of natural resources and safe existence of every person. In his encyclical letter “Laudato Si”, Pope Francis welcomes these initiatives and comprehensively and reasonably raise them to the theological transcendent level. Thanks to this document, a person is empowered to take personal responsibility for creation entrusted to him in relationship of love with the Lord Creator.

Encyclical Laudato si is based on the characteristics of human responsibility for creation as set forth in The Holy Bible. In the Old Testament, the following main features of responsibility for creation are distinguished: man created according to the image and likeness of God, able to glorify God, to know himself and freely give himself to another, to be a wise master of creation. The New Testament introduces a new aspect of man‘s relationship with creation - the divine Deity of man.

Pope Francis particularly emphasizes the importance of family as the core of education. He sees family as a place of comprehensive education, where various aspects of the maturation of a person, closely related to one another, can spread. In a harmonious family, a child learns the first habits of respect for life and environment, and sustainable behavior. However, today‘s families face major challenges in the modern world  and  are  often  no  longer  able  to  fulfill  their  mission.  Having  grown  up  in  incomplete,  damaged  families  of  unrelated  relationships,  without  knowing  true  love  and  care,  people  fail  to  create  healthy,  sustainable  families, where eternal values are passed on to children. That is why schools, the Church and the whole Christian community have a duty to raise awareness among the younger generation. This mission can be performed through beauty, sacred art, liturgy, practiced moderation, contemplative look into creation.

Published
2019-04-02
Section
Canon Law and Social Teaching of Church