Laudato Si' and Romano Guardini | Very Rev. Robert Barron | CWR
The influence of the theologian and cultural critic Guardini and his distinctive take on modernity is evident throughout Pope Francis' encyclical
In 1986, after serving in a variety of capacities in the Jesuit province of Argentina, Jorge Mario Bergoglio commenced doctoral studies in Germany. The focus of his research was the great twentieth century theologian and cultural critic Romano Guardini, who had been a key influence on, among many others, Karl Rahner, Henri de Lubac, and Joseph Ratzinger. As things turned out, Bergoglio never finished his doctoral degree (he probably started too late in life), but his immersion in the writings of Guardini decisively shaped his thinking.
Most of the commentary on Pope Francis's encyclical Laudato Si' has focused on the issue of global warming and the Pope's alignment with this or that political perspective, but this is to miss the forest for one very particular tree. As I read through the document, I saw, on practically every page, the influence of Romano Guardini and his distinctive take on modernity.
To get a handle on Guardini's worldview, one should start with a series of essays that he wrote in the 1920's, gathered into book form as Letters from Lake Como.