Christianity and Environmental Protection Policy : An analysis of the Laudato Si’ Manifesto and some of the responses to it
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This study analyses Laudato Si’s response to the current global environmental crisis and some of the key critiques of the document. It focuses on both the practical and spiritual solutions prescribed by the document for Christian churches and everyone of goodwill and examined the different arguments and claims to the document. It also examines how critiques help improve the concerns of the document. The study made use of one of the four major qualitative research methods: textual analysis, which is more constructive and interpretive. The analysis uses information from both the main text (Laudato Si’) and other Christian texts and individual responses to answer the research questions. The analytical construct was derived from existing theories and practice, previous research, and the knowledge of the researcher. The conclusion was drawn about the document’s proposal, inferences from the Christian and scientific conceptual model of the environment and climate, and responses from churches and critics. The analysis shows that Laudato Si’ has developed earlier Christian church teaching on global environmental challenges in a more holistic way. It reveals human irresponsible behavior at the root of the environmental crisis from environmental degradation of all sorts that have inflicted harm to the natural environment, leading to a huge climate crisis. Christianity has a major role to play in the process of change through its influence on human behavior and human attitude. It also reveals that Christians must play a stronger role by taking necessary and quick action in the process to fight climate change, cultivate greater care for the environment to effect change on the earth. The prescribed solutions seem to be a requirement for a sustainable solution.