A Guide To Laudato Si through the Criminal justice system

Every violation of solidarity and civic friendship harms the environment.

"If everything is related, then the health of a society's institutions has consequences for the environment and the quality of human life" (Laudato Si 142)

social and environmental crises are intertwined.

Solidarity is about valuing our fellow human beings and respecting who they are as individuals.

“The many situations of inequality, poverty and injustice, are signs not only of a profound lack of fraternity, but also of the absence of a culture of solidarity. New ideologies, characterized by rampant individualism, egocentrism and materialistic consumerism, weaken social bonds, fuelling that “throw away” mentality which leads to contempt for, and the abandonment of, the weakest and those considered “useless”. In this way human coexistence increasingly tends to resemble a mere do ut des which is both pragmatic and selfish” Pope Francis

“We are all one family in the world. Building a community that empowers everyone to attain their full potential through each of us respecting each other’s dignity, rights and responsibilities makes the world a better place to live” Sollicitudo rei socialis – ‘On Social Concern’ (1987)

“where injustices abound and growing numbers of people are deprived of basic human rights and considered expendable, the principle of the common good immediately becomes, logically and inevitably, a summons to solidarity and a preferential option for the poorest of our brothers and sisters.”

The Criminal Justice system consists of various agencies which seek to achieve similar goals: to achieve control of crime, minimization and prevention of crime, provide justice and protect members of our society. There are various levels of criminal justice systems in the United States, but outside countries as well, including state, federal and local level.

The context of Laudato Si connects to the criminal justice system with the focused idea of connecting the natural world with justice especially for both the poorest and most vulnerable people

Culture is more than what we have inherited from the past; it is also and above all, a living dynamic and participatory present reality which cannot be excluded as we rethink the relationship between human beings and the environment. Pope Francis calls in Laudato Si for a “social ecology” that recognizes that the “health of a society’s institutions has consequences for the environment and the quality of human life” (Laudato Si, 142). Social ecology is “necessarily institutional, and gradually extends to the whole of society, from the primary social group, the family, to the wider local, national and international communities” (Laudato Si 142). Pope Francis recognizes that “the extreme poverty experienced in areas lacking harmony, open spaces or potential for integration, can lead to incidents of brutality and to exploitation by criminal organizations” (Laudato 142).

“What takes place in any one area can have a direct or indirect influence on other areas. Thus for example drug use in affluent societies creates a continual and growing demand for products imported from poor regions where behavior is corrupted, lives are destroyed, and the environment continues to deteriorate” (Laudato Si, 142).


After the civil war known as “La Violencia” Colombian government and another party agreed to share power with the country, however the Colombian government fell through and left the lower class defenseless

FARC was created in 1964 with the intent to defend the poor and have the ideology of social equality

It impacted both Colombia and outside countries in several aspects; Millions of lives were lost and altered due to the actions caused by FARC. The U.S allied with the Colombia’s gov’t aiding them with $1.3 billion for the “war on drugs” fight. Despite the bloody conflict brought on by FARC and other terrorist groups in Colombia, a peace treaty has recently been signed. This peace deal will finally end the 52 year conflict and bring a new era for Colombia.

Today in Colombia as of June 23 of last year, a ceasefire was declared, following a challenging peace process


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