Letter sent to Pope Francis about the Encyclical Laudato Si Estela Torres

Your Holiness,

Through this letter, I would like to talk about a topic that has been neglected in the Church. I will take as example the Encyclical Laudato si and the Catechism of the Catholic Church 2415-2418, to point out and question some passages of these two documents, which seem to me problematic. It concerns the (mis)place of animals in the Catholic Church.

I know that many people applauded and gladly received the encyclical, I agree, it is an advance for the Church in matters of Ecology. However, catholics and other christians animal lovers are disappointed by the poor clarity of His Holiness with regard to non-human creatures of God exploited by man, the animals. It is insufficient for an encyclical on ecology. When I learned that you had chosen the name of Francis for St. Francis of Assis I thought "at last a Pope who will speak up for animals" Unfortunately I have not seen you clearly manifest yourself in their defense. You are right to adopt from Saint Francis of Assis the dimension of poverty and defend the poor as you do, but why don’t you include those other poor and unprotected which are also the animals ? The animal is also the poor without defense, the voiceless as the poorest human being. These beings are all at the mercy of the goodness or the evil of humans.

As father Robert Culat declares in his book A Vegetarian Paradise, "In the context of the holistic ecology developed by His Holiness, we regret some deficiencies or omissions : the encyclical does not mention the problem of excessive consumption of meat, the scandal of intensive animal production (and therefore slaughterhouses), or vegetarianism. At least not explicitly ... when it is one of the main causes of climate change and when millions of animals are slaughtered for human consumption every day. Animals are mentioned 24 times in the encyclical either in general (animals [1], animal species [2], other living beings [3], other creatures [4], all beings on this earth [5], life In all its forms [6]), either specifically (birds [7], insects [8])." Some people still think that the term creature refers to the human creature so it is not very clear to who it refers. It is a pity that you did not clearly mention the word animal ..... only once ! And animals are not the environment.

It is difficult for me to understand how it is increasingly necessary to find more and more arguments to make people see the urgent need for an attitude of respect and compassion towards animals. Why don’t we understand or want to see, when it is such an obvious reality. We have only to observe / contemplate any animal to know it is a life. A life that is here to live its own life. As Albert Schweitzer said : "I am a life that wants to live surrounded by a life that wants to live. » And their lives are as important to them as ours are to us.

And as much as a human being , believes and tell themself that he/she is « superior » and that his/her life is worth more than that of an animal, this does not give him the right to dispose of their lives as he wants. I am not speaking here of an extreme case of self-defense or a matter of life-and-death. I am speaking about what we do in a daily basis, place our non-vital interests (desire to eat an animal or dress with your skin or amuse me for a while) before the vital need animals, which involves depriving them of life itself. One of the roots of the problem is the following reasoning : Since our lives are worth more, it does not matter, it is legal, it is permitted, it is normal to put my desire before the lower /inferior life of animals. "Animals were created for humans." And this is how our society is built, based on animal death bodies. They are everywhere. Is this the kingdom God desired for his creatures ? A kingdom based on violence allowed by all of us ? And in this case, the Catholic Church, how come this religion that is said to be a religion of Love , because "God is Love" is incapable of extending that love to non-human beings ? How can a Church that promotes compassion, protection to the smallest, the most vulnerable, is unable to see in animals the poorest most vulnerable and unprotected beings on this planet ? How can we say that our priority is humans and stop there ? Because I have been literally told this by priests and in the encyclical, His Holiness in a subtle way says it as well. We are wrong in our way of seeing, the church is still blind, a conversion in the way we see and consider animals becomes an imperative. The Church refuses to be in closes relation to these innocent beings, our smaller brothers and sisters , beloved creatures of God.

The love that I feel for animals comes from God because it surpasses me, it is in me but it is more than me, it transcends me. And not for this, I love less my children , my husband, my parents, my neighbors, humans . Love is unlimited infinite disinterested when it comes from God. Just look at a dog or cat, a cow with its calf, ants in their way to their anthole, to realize the complexity of their lives, and how perfect they are in what they are. Christians should be the first to see that animals, plants, all creation is not their own, life is of God and comes from God. And the Church has been taking so much time resisting and not wanting to give importance and seriousness to all this unexplored chapter about the place of animals in creation. Fortunately there are theologians who are writing on the subject, giving new insights to certain passages of the Bible , questioning the Christian thought about animals and developping an Animal Theology. One of this insights is an explanation of anthropocentrism coming in part from the philosophy of Aristoteles and readapted by St. Thomas Aquinas. That is, the justification for animal exploitation is not even or only Biblical, it comes from other sources that the Church interpreted and adapted. It is not the original message for the treatment of animals it has been a mis interpretation perduring through centuries.

Yes, it is true, some of the passages of the Bible are problematic. Justifications can be found for sacrifices, to eat animals, to distrust vegetarians and to imply an inferiority to the animal. There are also justifications for ethnic cleansing and slavery of humans as Norm Phelps explains it ("Dominon of Love"). No one today would dare take as an example a passage from the Bible to enslave or commit a murder, but we do continue to use the Bible and Theology to justify the exploitation.

A passage that has done much damage to the animals is being revisited. Genesis 1:28 When God gives humans dominion over animals. But it is seldom mentioned that the phrase that follows just after dominion is when God gives a vegetarian diet to both humans and animals. In other words, this dominion had nothing to do with abuse or death. Humans did not have to kill to feed themselves, both humans and animals had enough to eat. One explanation is that this was the world desired by God, a world of peace between humans and animals :

Genesis 1, 27-30
And God created the human being in His image ;
He created it in the image of God.
Man and woman created them,
28 And he blessed them with these words :
"Be fruitful and multiply ;
Fill the earth and subdue it ;
Dominate the fish of the sea and the birds of the air,
And all the creeping things that creep on the ground.

Normally the reading stops here and we forget the following phrase that is key to understanding the type of domination.This means not having to use violence which implies killing to eat. It is a dominion that means responsibility, as parents who offers with responsibility, care, protection and love to their children.

29 He also said to them, "I give you from the earth
All plants that produce seed
And all the trees that bear fruit with seed ;
All this will be your food.
30 And I give green grass as food
To all the beasts of the earth,
To all the birds of the sky
And to all living beings
Which creep into the earth. "And so it was.

And the most important biblical argument for not exploiting animals is love, God is love. And if God is love, is this love limited to humans ? This anthropocentric vision endures in the Church in general rather than focusing on God the creator of life and all things. The Church still hasn’t done Justice to the animals until their true place is given back to them. Humans have usurpated the place of animals. We have been told lies or half thruths about animals. Let’s give animal the place that belongs to them from God. Animals are being treated in a way that goes against God’s plan for them and it is not enough just to say we have to treat them well. Because it turns out in a discourse that says : "Let’s treat them well until we kill them" as if I had to right to decide when to grab the life of a living being. As Andrew Linzey says : "Animals are God’s creatures, not human property, nor utilities, nor resources, nor commodities, but precious beings in God’s sight. ... Christians whose eyes are fixed on the awfulness of crucifixion are in a special position to understand the awfulness of innocent suffering. The Cross of Christ is God’s absolute identification with the weak, the powerless, and the vulnerable, but most of all with unprotected, undefended, innocent suffering." Our mistake has been to imagine and worship a God in the image of man, limited in Love and incapable of accepting all creatures in heaven."God only thought about humans when he created Heaven. Sorry animals with mortal souls non- rational brutes there is only room for humans here in Heaven".

I do not believe in that God.
How a loving God of compassion and justice, could have created living beings so complex and sophisticated, sentient with the capacity to feel pain, hunger, cold, fear only for man to dispose of them. What kind of God is this ?

 If this is believing in God, then I do not believe in God.

 The image I have is that of a God with a plan of peace and life, like the Kingdom of Peace in the prophecy of Isaiah 11 : 6-9. The lives of so many animals in this world is hell, a calvary in massive scale. Are we so blind not to see their suffering ? The Church does not pronounce herself and we continue to justify as normal one of the greatest injustices that exist in this world. What is the Church afraid of ? losing its special place ? She can not understand that being for animals does not mean being against humans. Why always that need to lower the animal to raise the human ? The point is to include the animals in the circle of compassion and of love. It is time to put an end to common places and ready made clichés "take care of malnourished children first and then animals." . It’s not either one or the other, it’s both. The two win is not about making the other lose for one to win. How much damage we cause thinking this way. As I said before animals like children are at the mercy of the goodness or evil of the adult human. It is the use of force and power, without limits which becomes evil, the contrary of good of kindness.

The human must responsibly make use of his freedom and decide the limits to violence, force and power. Those are the limits that God expected from humans , "you decide, you can take everything that is here, except for this". God put a limit. The human being has chosen violence. This violence towards animals is the same violence as towards the human beings,it comes from a same single source. And just as some people feel the right to annihilate lives because they are worth less, at one time we also classified as inferior other humans, because of their color, size, geographical area, and so on. It is the same kind of reasoning that allows us to abuse, exploit and enslave animals and people. Why does the Church allows the violence by her deafening silence or direct participation in bullfighting celebrations. Isn’t this completely against Christian values and ethics ? How can there even be priests who justify corridas by explaining it is a combat between good versus evil, of dominion over bestiality. Are they saying that the bull is evil ? The bull has not even asked to be there. He wants to continue in his meadow leaving peacefully. Where is the mysticism in stabbing an animal to death and celebrate it ? Too much violence, suffering, blood for the Church not to notice it, or she doesn’t care, or even participates. And I finish this letter with a question : The second commandment is to love your neighbor as yourself. Until when will we catholics will accept the animal as our neighbor ALSO ?

Mark 12, 28-34
 
At that time a scribe came to Jesus and asked him, "What commandment is the first of all ?" Jesus answered, "The first is," Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord : You shall love the Lord your God, with all
 Your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, with all your being. "The second is this :" You shall love your neighbor as yourself. "There is no commandment greater than these." The scribe replied, "Very well Teacher, you’re right when you say
 That the Lord is one and there is no other besides him ; And that to love him with all the heart, with all understanding and with all being, and to love one’s neighbor as one’s own is worth more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices. " Seeing that
 Had answered sensibly, said to him, "You are not far from the kingdom of God." And no one dared to ask him any more questions.

 
1 John 4 : 7-8

God is love
7 Beloved, let us love one another ; Because love is of God. Everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.
 8 He who does not love does not know God ; Because God is love.

 1 John 4 : 16-18 16

And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love ; And he that abideth in love abideth in God, and God in him.

Comments on several passages from Laudato Si

V. A UNIVERSAL COMMUNION

89. The created things of this world are not free of ownership : “For they are yours, O Lord, who love the living” (Wis 11:26). This is the basis of our conviction that, as part of the universe, called into being by one Father, all of us are linked by unseen bonds and together form a kind of universal family, a sublime communion which fills us with a sacred, affectionate and humble respect. Here I would reiterate that “God has joined us so closely to the world around us that we can feel the desertification of the soil almost as a physical ailment, and the extinction of a species as a painful disfigurement”.[67]

If we are united by invisible bonds and conform a universal family should we not once and for all give animals their rightful place and treat them as family ? In practice, the universal family is reserved only for humans. Throughout the encyclical his Holiness insists on the particular place of the human and brings about a separation again. This paragraph, with which I agree, cancels itself with other affirmations in its Encyclical. So are we united or separated ? It is as if the encyclical takes a step forward and two backward saying and then unsaying what is just said, What hope does it give us for animals to stop the life in hell on Earth created by humans ?

90. This is not to put all living beings on the same level nor to deprive human beings of their unique worth and the tremendous responsibility it entails.

His Holiness has no idea how such claims harm animals. The human only retains that since he has unique worth this gives him the right to use the animals that do not have this unique worth.

Nor does it imply a divinization of the earth which would prevent us from working on it and protecting it in its fragility. Such notions would end up creating new imbalances which would deflect us from the reality which challenges us.[68] At times we see an obsession with denying any pre-eminence to the human person ; more zeal is shown in protecting other species than in defending the dignity which all human beings share in equal measure. Certainly, we should be concerned lest other living beings be treated irresponsibly. But we should be particularly indignant at the enormous inequalities in our midst, whereby we continue to tolerate some considering themselves more worthy than others. We fail to see that some are mired in desperate and degrading poverty, with no way out, while others have not the faintest idea of what to do with their possessions, vainly showing off their supposed superiority and leaving behind them so much waste which, if it were the case everywhere, would destroy the planet. In practice, we continue to tolerate that some consider themselves more human than others, as if they had been born with greater rights.

Particularly indignant at the enormous injustice, we continue to tolerate some human beings considering themselves more worthy than others humans and and animals.

This as a consequence extends to other species. Some humans feel superior than others humans and the human species feels superior than other animal species more worthy to live than others, as a green light to kill.

91. A sense of deep communion with the rest of nature cannot be real if our hearts lack tenderness, compassion and concern for our fellow human beings. It is clearly inconsistent to combat trafficking in endangered species while remaining completely indifferent to human trafficking, unconcerned about the poor, or undertaking to destroy another human being deemed unwanted.

There can not be real a feeling of intimate union with human beings if our hearts lack tenderness compassion and concern with the rest of nature. It is clearly inconsistent to combat human trafficking, concern about the poor while remaining completely indifferent to endangered species trafficking, industrial farming and animal exploitation in general.

This compromises the very meaning of our struggle for the sake of the environment. It is no coincidence that, in the canticle in which Saint Francis praises God for his creatures, he goes on to say : “Praised be you my Lord, through those who give pardon for your love”. Everything is connected. Concern for the environment thus needs to be joined to a sincere love for our fellow human beings and an unwavering commitment to resolving the problems of society.

Sincere love for our fellow humans beings needs to be joined to a sincer love and concern for the environment and all its life forms.

Why didn’t the Pope formulated this inconsitency the other way around ? A sense of deep communion with our fellow humans can not be real if our hearts lack tenderness, compassion and concern for our fellow non human creatures and nature.

95. The natural environment is a collective
good, the patrimony of all humanity and the responsibility
of everyone. If we make something
our own, it is only to administer it for the good
of all. If we do not, we burden our consciences
with the weight of having denied the existence
of others. That is why the New Zealand bishops
asked what the commandment “Thou shalt not
kill” means when “twenty percent of the world’s
population consumes resources at a rate that
robs the poor nations and future generations of
what they need to survive”.

We need to stop saying patrimony of all humanity. It is patrimony of all the creautres that live in this earth not only humans.
It is the heritage of every living being, Every living being occupies a place and a space in this world We need to worry for all future generations not only of humans since we are all connnected. Saying this puts the human being as the owner.

119. Nor must the critique of a misguided anthropocentrism
underestimate the importance
of interpersonal relations. If the present ecological
crisis is one small sign of the ethical, cultural
and spiritual crisis of modernity, we cannot presume
to heal our relationship with nature and
the environment without healing all fundamental
human relationships. Christian thought sees
human beings as possessing a particular dignity
above other creatures ; it thus inculcates esteem
for each person and respect for others.

If we keep saying that human beings possess a particular dignity above other creatures
we have to be very clear on what consists this dignity. For me it is problematic because it is understood as having the right over other creatures. This also gives other creatures’ lives less value.

And vice versa. Again insisting And placing the human being above when in reality what every human must understand is his bond with everything that lives and each living being has a special place and each being should have its life respected .

Our openness to others, each of whom is a “thou”
capable of knowing, loving and entering into
dialogue, remains the source of our nobility as
human persons. A correct relationship with the
created world demands that we not weaken this
social dimension of openness to others, much
less the transcendent dimension of our openness
to the “Thou” of God. Our relationship with the
environment can never be isolated from our relationship
with others and with God.

Our relationship with others and with God can never be isolated form our relationship to the environment and with animals. . It would be an individualism in disguise, living kindly in an only human world . The liturgie on Sundays expresses this only human feeling where only humans and God exist, the rest is accessory and decoration.

129. In order to continue providing employment,
it is imperative to promote an economy
which favours productive diversity and business
creativity. For example, there is a great variety
of small-scale food production systems which
feed the greater part of the world’s peoples, using
a modest amount of land and producing less
waste, be it in small agricultural parcels, in orchards
and gardens, hunting and wild harvesting

or local fishing.

His Holiness still talks about hunting and fishing ? As if hunted animals and fish were commodities and not creatures with inherent value to God.

Hunting and fishing when it is not vital should not be activities promoted in this encyclical.

130. In the philosophical and theological vision
of the human being and of creation which
I have presented, it is clear that the human person,
endowed with reason and knowledge, is not
an external factor to be excluded. While human
intervention on plants and animals is permissible
when it pertains to the necessities of human
life, the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches
that experimentation on animals is morally acceptable
only “if it remains within reasonable
limits [and] contributes to caring for or saving
human lives”.The Catechism firmly states that
human power has limits and that “it is contrary
to human dignity to cause animals to suffer or
die needlessly”. All such use and experimentation
“requires a religious respect for the integrity
of creation”.

This point unfortunately reflects that the Encyclical is not distinguishable from the Catechism. Did Your Holiness know that there are already alternative methods to animal experimentation ? That animal suffering is not necessary. Should not the Church should not continue to allow human beings to intervene in animals, or to perform experiments. What are the reasonable limits ?
And the slaughterhouses ? Fur industry ? entertainment with animals ? hunting ? Why not specify and condemn clearly these practices ? We need a clear statetement about what it means "it is contrary to human dignitiy to cause animals to suffer or die needlessly ? Apparently no one has understood. As we all continue to justify the consumption of animals for everything we say we "need". At Easter week -old lambs are killed to celebrate the Resurrection of Christ ! Is this really needed ?

The Catholic Church would need to modify those parragraphs of the Cathechism. This could be the core of the problem. I do not agree that human intervention is permissible on plants and animals when it perains to the necessities of human life, because human life, to survive doesnt need to kill billions of animals. On the contrary we are killing ourselves by killing them. Where is the revolutionary aspect everybody talks about in Laudato Si ? The Pope still agrees on experimentation on animals as morally acceptable, instead of insisting in other alternatives to experimentation. What is his meaning of contrary to human dignity to cause animals to suffer needlesly ? Who determines what is needed or not needed ? For the moment every use is justified even the bullfighting.The church hasn’t pronounced herself against it. We in the Catholic Church still have priests blessing arenas and we have celebrations that torture animals in honor of saints.

145. Many intensive forms of environmental
exploitation and degradation not only exhaust
the resources which provide local communities
with their livelihood, but also undo the social
structures which, for a long time, shaped cultural
identity and their sense of the meaning of life
and community. The disappearance of a culture
can be just as serious, or even more serious,
than the disappearance of a species of plant or
animal. The imposition of a dominant lifestyle
linked to a single form of production can be just
as harmful as the altering of ecosystems.

What is serious is what’s been expressed in this phrase. Why always compare as if a competition ? I do not agree on making such a comparison. There must always be a phrase to keep putting the human being a little higher and reduce the animal, this is harmful for the understanding of how animals should be treated. This always ends up justifying abuse, man has the right. The animals were created for the human being, man is the only one with an immortal soul, the only rational being created in the Image of God and so on. These same arguments serve to exploit them, abuse them and massacre them ! It is urgent to change discourse, tactics, paradigm.

189. Politics must not be subject to the economy,
nor should the economy be subject to the
dictates of an efficiency-driven paradigm of technocracy.
Today, in view of the common good,
there is urgent need for politics and economics
to enter into a frank dialogue in the service of
life, especially human life.

Why the insistence of especially human life ? All life ! This is not integral ecology, I am not against the value of human life but I disagree in emphasizing especially human life. The life of the animal is as important to him as my life is important to me. This is what should be emphasized. Valuing all life, the ethic of respect for life as Schweitzer said. We Catholics who defend animals defend life, that of the human being that of the fetus, that of plants, animals. And the people of the Church act as if they were defending themselves from animal advocates because they feel that those people value animals more than people, is not true ,they do not understand because they don not know that many people that defend animals help also humans. This is more consistent. Love and compassion can not be measured or divided. Does the Church believe that God is unable to love all of his creation and has only the capacity to have one unique concern humans ?

The Catechism of the Catholic Church

2415

Animals, like plants and inanimate beings, are by nature destined for the common good of past, present, and future humanity. Use of the mineral, vegetable, and animal resources of the universe cannot be divorced from respect for moral imperatives. Man’s dominion over inanimate and other living beings granted by the Creator is not absolute ; it is limited by concern for the quality of life of his neighbor, including generations to come ; it requires a religious respect for the integrity of creation.

This paragraph should be modified. Here we find the justification and permission for the exploitation of animals and the entire planet. Animals are not destined for the common good of past, present and future humanity. Man’s dominion is limited by the concern of the quality of life of all the inhabitants of the planet including that of generations to come not only human, but that of all living beings.

2416

Animals are God’s creatures... men owe them kindness. We should recall the gentleness with which saints like St. Francis of Assisi or St. Philip Neri treated animals

2417

God entrusted animals to the stewardship of those whom he created in his own image. Hence it is legitimate to use animals for food and clothing. They may be domesticated to help man in his work and leisure. Medical and scientific experimentation on animals is a morally acceptable practice if it remains within reasonable limits and contributes to caring for or saving human lives.

There is a profound contradiction between paragraph 2416 and 2417. On the one hand, animals are creatures of God we owe them good except when the animal becomes a good for man ? It is no longer legitimate to use animals for food or clothing. Animal experiments are obsolete. Since alternatives to animal experimentation exist it is not morally acceptable to experiment with animals. God entrusts animals to those whom he created in his own image. Human beings should then care for animals as God would, as a father cares for his children, with compassion and kindness, not to administer them as goods, or things. We must distinguish between custom and necessity. It is one thing that man has become accustomed to eating animals and has based all his economy on animal exploitation. And another thing is to question the vital necessity to make use of them. We live in a time in which hunting to survive is not necessary, (except in some regions)neither to eat animals to live in good health.

2418

It is contrary to human dignity to cause animals to suffer or die needlessly. It is likewise unworthy to spend money on them that should as a priority go to the relief of human misery. One can love animals ; one should not direct to them the affection due only to persons.

It is contrary to human dignity to cause animals to suffer or die needlessly.
So then what is necessary suffering ? How to draw the line between what is necessary or not ? Needless or necessary suffering:Factory farms, Slaughterhouses, Fur industry, Bullfighting, sport hunting, bear bile farms, circus, zoo..........
...................

It is likewise unworthy to spend money on them that should as a priority go to the relief of human misery.

Unworthy the phrase itself. It is unworthy to spend money on animals that should as a priority go to the relief of human misery ? So it is not unworthy to spend money for other things like vacations or restaurants ? Is it unworthy then to spend money on animal misery ?Why always take from animals when they don’t have anything ? How can the Cathechism gives itself the right to judge unwworthy to spend money on animals ?

One can love animals ; one should not direct to them the affection due only to persons.

What does this last sentence refer to ? Why put a limit ? As if the Love of God was limited. And the people who are alone and comfort themselves loving their pet ? I do not think I could put a limit or measure love, it is absurd to ask for this. On the other hand I am against the humanization of animals. This is not healthy for the animal or the human.

Example of Catholic thought about animals with the Catechism as source of justification. It is in a way representative of the how in general, catholics think animals.

Article from Fr Willaim Saunders.
https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?recnum=1463

The Catholic Church teaches that we should have respect for animals, and not cause them un-necessary harm. However, animals should not be treated like people, and it is okay to eat meat, wear leather and experiment on animals.

In addressing this issue, we have to first lay a moral foundation. In the Genesis account of creation, we find the truth that Almighty God created all things out of nothing and what He created was good in His eyes. However, Genesis climaxes in the creation of man and woman, and only they are created in the image and likeness of God (Gn 1:27). Only the human person has an immortal soul. As much as we may love animals, especially our own family pets, human beings must not ever be equated with animals (even if some human beings act worse than animals).

While we respect all creation and must use creation wisely, the key is "we can use it." Following the principle of stewardship, nothing is intrinsically wrong with using animals wisely for labor, transportation, clothing, food or other needs. We must always remember the distinction between human beings and animals and use good reason and judgment when using animals.

Granted, no good person wants to be cruel to an animal ; but human beings must use creation for their own preservation. At the same time, we must not blur the distinction between a human being and an animal. I remember once driving behind another car that had two bumper stickers : one was "Save the whales" and the other was, "I’m pro-choice." I was repulsed to think that here is a person who is concerned about the killing of whales but does not mind that innocent human beings are being aborted each day.
Recognizing the distinction then between a person and an animal, and following the principle of stewardship, animals can be used for labor, transportation, food, clothing or other needs. Sacred Scripture has numerous examples of human beings using animals in each of these ways, including clothing : In Genesis, after the fall of Adam and Eve, we read, "For the man and his wife, the Lord God made leather garments, with which he clothed them" (Gn 2:21). Also, St. John the Baptizer is also described as wearing fur : "John was clothed in a garment of camel’s hair and wore a leather belt around his waist" (Mt 3:4). Given this basis, there is nothing intrinsically wrong in wearing a fur coat just as there is nothing intrinsically wrong with eating meat.

 While it is proper to kill an animal for food in order to survive, it is morally wrong to just wantonly kill and to waste. 

Conclusion in form of questions

  • What is the Church afraid of ? That people love animals more than people ?
    To lose her place at the center ? To admit that she has been wrong all these years ?
  • Why is it that the issue of animal suffering is not a priority ? Animal exploitation has reached unbearable extremes and in full legality !
  • Don’t you think that by giving back to animals their place, humans would take their rightful place, which does not mean to lose it ?
    What is the right place ? To me it is the place granted by God to human beings as protectors and responsible of all the Life of the planet. A protector who treats each creature with kindness and compassion. This implies respecting first of all, their lives, not to kill them, not to eat them, not to experiment with them, not to have fun on the basis of their suffering and not to slavery. All these acts His Holiness are not vital for the survival of human beings, all these cruel acts are not God’s plan for his creatures. The human being in this way does not reflect or resemble the image of a God of compassion, love and kindness.
    If humans are different, it is obvious, but each species is different, why the need to hierarchize ? All human and nonhuman are living beings, why give some more right than others to live ?
    Their lives do not belong to us, we do not own their lives neither the moment of their deaths. That the human is a rational being, we will not deny it, but this does not justify reducing other creatures to the category of object or merchandise or food. As humans themselves prove it rationality is not a warranty for kindness.
  • Why does the Church remain silent before the slaughter of billions of animals every day for human consumption ?
  • Why does the Church remain silent with the participation of priests in the bullfights and celebrations in countries such as Spain, Mexico, Colombia etc. In this countries the Church is directly involved with mistreatment and animal suffering.
    Silence is permisiveness. How many of us have been waiting for His Holiness to express himself against these issues that place the Church in a bad position. Do you know that many catholics have already left the Church dissapointed by her indifference towards animal exploitation ?
  • Do you distinguish between a vital need, a matter of life or death, self-defense and a habit, a custom ? Most mistreatment does not fall into these categories of vital need. -Why didn’t you mention in the encyclical anything about the industrial production of meat, milk, eggs ? -You do not mention at any time the animals of consumption as the cows, pigs, chickens etc. Why wasn’t it more clearly expressed all animal exploitation ? Did the Holy Father know that this industry is responsible for much of climate change ? Laudato si supposedly concerned for climate change. Neither His Holiness nor the governments speak of this. Industrial animal production is responsible for deforestation as well. Imagine if all the grains destined to feed the cattle were destined to the people dying of hunger ? Would your Holiness reconsider to review the Catechism of the Catholic Church in the chapters that speak about animals and legitimizing their use and make the necessary changes ?