Patrick Carolan visits to discuss his latest very timely article titled ” Bold, Visionary Thinking is Necessary to Combat Climate Crisis.”
Patrick Carolan speaks
Patrick said the following in his article.
Today our mainstream economic and business practices do not consider the value of God’s creation, as our Holy Father urges. A tree has no inherent value when it is standing in a forest. It only has value when it can be cut down and sold. We develop economic models on the value of a tree based on the cost of cutting the tree down vs the monetary value of the profit gained by cutting the tree down. We look at environmental assets and services by using their market value. This view is contrary to what Franciscan values teach us. In a recent article Social Justice without Cosmic Theology is Blind, Ilia Delio, OSF writes “God liberates when God becomes fully alive in the human person and in creation. If we want a different world then we must become a different people.” The Economist and Ethicist Laszlo Zsolnai wrote in his article Franciscan Spirituality and Economics, “However the total value of natural entities cannot be calculated merely on the basis of their material usefulness for humans. Price is a poor and often misleading model for assessing the value of natural entities. Scholars demonstrated that the value of natural entities cannot be determined by the market mechanism.” In his book Franciscans and their Finances: Economics in a Disenchanted World, Fr. David Couturier wrote, “Francis’ fraternal economy is not primarily about dollars and cents, market shares or stock derivatives. It is about the destiny of men and women in the real world and how they come about a new security and peace in God.” …
“The earth sustains humanity,” wrote Hildegard von Bingen, the 12th-century Benedictine nun and doctor of the church. “It must not be injured; it must not be destroyed.” Laszlo Zsolnai points out in his aforementioned article that “Pope Francis’s encyclical letter “Laudato Si’” is consistent with and supports St. Francis’s views which emphasize the frugality of consumption and acknowledging the intrinsic value of nature.” The overall vision that St. Francis taught us by his words and his life is based on a God-centered, spiritual way of living and acting. Pope Francis added an integral ecology to the vast body of Catholic social teaching in the hope that it “can help us to acknowledge the appeal, immensity and urgency of the challenge we face”.
Who is Patrick Carolan?
Patrick Carolan is a Catholic social justice advocate originally from Connecticut and is currently working with Vote Common Good as Director on Catholic outreach. His opinions do not necessarily reflect those of the Franciscan Action Network.
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