Sustainability and religious dialogue
Tatay, Jaime & Devitt, Catherine2017
In the wake of the promulgation of Laudato si’, Pope Francis’ 2015 landmark encyclical on our relationship with the natural world, there has been a renewed interest in the role religions and Faith-Based Organizations can play in fostering sustainability, as well as in the possibilities and limits of interreligious dialogue related to one of the central objectives of our time: the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals defined in the UN Agenda 2030 and the Paris Climate Accord.
This article claims that a growing interreligious discursive convergence on ecology has its roots in the acknowledgment of a set of ecological meta-problems, rather than in a common, single meta-narrative. The emergence of distinctive inter-denominational and interreligious
discourses is increasingly shaping a shared, pluralistic narrative grounded in social justice, care for creation and intergenerational solidarity. Moreover, religions and Faith-Based Organisations are already bringing an integral, holistic perspective to the socio-environmental debate, filling in an interstitial place in the sustainability arena, while performing four key functions: bridging, binding, deepening and sustaining. The medium and long-term impact of the recent interreligious discursive convergence in catalyzing action and bringing behavioral change on ecological matters still lacks, however, a robust, evidence-based analysis.