Economist Sachs acts as pope’s cheerleader on ‘Laudato si’

Economist Sachs acts as pope’s cheerleader on ‘Laudato si’

Christopher White – Jun 30, 2018

World renowned economist Jeffrey Sachs speaks with Crux on the 3rd anniversary of ‘Laudato Si.’

[Not the first pope to consult this pro-contraceptive, pro-abort, pro-population control “expert” on matters of Catholic social teaching; the Vatican consulted him for the same on behalf of JP2 and B16!]

ROME — Jeffrey Sachs — one of the world’s best-known economists — is also arguably one of the world’s biggest cheerleaders of Pope Francis and believes him to be the most important moral leader in the world today.

Sachs, who is not Catholic, has advised the Vatican on papal documents for over 25 years now. Despite having notable disagreements with the Church on issues such as contraception and population control, he’s accepted the call of the last three popes for people of “goodwill” to dialogue with the Church and seek common understanding.

Through his work with the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, Sachs was a critical player in helping craft Laudato si’, Francis’s 2015 encyclical calling for greater care for creation, and today he’s a leading champion of the document on the global stage.

Sachs was recently in Rome for meetings of the Pontifical Academy and spoke with Crux on the third anniversary of the encyclical’s release, which he believes remains a clarion call for change from policymakers and powerbrokers all the way down to everyday Catholics in the pews.

Crux: You’ve consulted on a number of papal documents, both under St. Pope John Paul II and now Francis. How was the process for Laudato si’ different than previous experiences?

Sachs: Each time that I’ve participated, it’s been a very serious and impressive process. In Centesimus Annus [Pope John Paul II’s 1991 encyclical on Catholic social teaching] advisory preparation they called in many economists from around the world for input and a very considered process with a long discussion with Pope John Paul II.

In the case of Laudato si’, there was an absolutely remarkable period of lead-up bringing the world’s top scientists, climatologists, engineers, as well as many other communities of engagement — politicians, judges, mayors, and others to the Vatican so that this issue could be explored in tremendous depth.

I regard the Pontifical Academy of Sciences as a unique institution in the world because it’s the cutting edge and the highest level of scientific engagement, combined with the faith of the Church. There are no counterparts that I know of with the convening power where the world’s leading experts came, made inputs, contributed, and then we all sat back and watched this beautiful encyclical emerge.

By some accounts, Laudato si’ is the most quoted papal document in history in just three years’ time. How do you account for that?

It’s magnificent — absolutely magnificent. You read it and it’s breathtaking. I often say that I can assign it to first year graduate students in earth sciences, biology, theology, diplomacy, or political science. It’s so compellingly holistic that it can be read from all these crucial points of view, so therefore it inspires in its profundity, and it speaks to our urgent needs in a very direct way. The language is also very clear, and I think it brings the full emotional response to all of the knowledge that is deeply interwoven in the document.

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