Fratelli Tutti:
Reflections on Pope Francis’s Call for Fraternity in Law and Religion


A Canopy Forum Thematic Series
November 2020

Foreground of “Angels Unawares” by Timothy Schmalz / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0

Pope Francis’s recently published Encyclical, Fratelli Tutti (“All Brothers”), is an important tour de force of many of the societal, social, and justice concerns that the Pope has made a central concern of his papacy. In eight chapters, Pope Francis explores and offers a firm, but not dogmatic Catholic vision of many issues at the crossroads of law and religion on today’s society. From the state of political discourse, democratic divisiveness, international refugee crises and immigration, social and economic justice, and the need to cultivate brotherhood in times fraught with conflict, the encyclical engages many critical challenges facing humanity today. In this series, developed in partnership with Talk About and BYU’s International Center for Law and Religion Studies, scholars, theologians, jurists, and clergy reflect on Fratelli Tutti from a range of perspectives, highlighting the relevance, possibilities—and in some cases, the limitations—of the Pope’s sweeping call for a more charitable fraternity among people and nations.


Fratelli tutti: A Marvelous Gift of Pope Francis”

Rafael Domingo
November 9, 2020

“Pope Francis has just published a far-reaching encyclical that is destined, with time, to become his spiritual legacy to mankind in the realm of social issues. It is not surprising, therefore, that the pontiff wished to sign and present his document in Assisi, Italy, before the tomb of his beloved Saint Francis…”


“The Renewal of Catholic Social Concerns in Fratelli tutti

Thomas Massaro
November 10, 2020

“As understanding the finer points of Roman Catholic ethical doctrine can be a feat in and of itself, it is difficult to blame anyone beyond or even within the worldwide community of Catholic believers if they are somewhat mystified regarding the content and status of those documents that emanate from the Vatican and address moral issues…”


“Universal Love and Borderless Rights: Attending to Our Neighbor with Pope Francis and the Good Samaritan”

Greg Marcar
November 11, 2020

“In his previous encyclical Laudato Si, Pope Francis claims that the contours of biblical teaching “suggest that human life is grounded in three fundamental and closely intertwined relationships: with God, with our neighbor, and with earth itself” (para. 66). It may be observed that these three overlapping relationships are also the subjects of Francis’ encyclicals to date…”


“Religious peacebuilding in Fratelli tutti

Montserrat Gas-Aixendri
November 12, 2020

“The post-9/11 world was marked by an urgent need to theorize about the relationship between religion and violence, but at the same time, it sparked a growing interest in the role of religion in peacebuilding. Much of what has been written on this subject in recent years is based on Scott R. Appleby’s work The ambivalence of the Sacred: Religion, Violence and Reconciliation (2000)…”


“Pope Francis’ Politics of Love”

Patrick Hornbeck
November 13, 2020

“Pope Francis’s recent encyclical is the second of his major writings inspired directly by his papal namesake, St. Francis of Assisi. In Laudato si’, published in 2015, Pope Francis lifted up the saint’s invocation of praise for God’s presence in creation, which the pontiff memorably dubbed “our common home…”


“Universalist Response to Particularistic Regression: Political Philosophy behind the Pope Francis Encyclical Fratelli tutti”

Mikhail Minakov
November 17, 2020

“The modern history of humanity is driven by several contradictions, one of them being the conflict between universalism and particularism. In a nutshell, numerous universalist frameworks are grounded on the idea that norms and values relate equally to all humans, to all living creatures, or — even more widely — to all forms of being…”


“Pope Francis, Fratelli tutti, and the Quest for a “Civilization of Love”

Robert Fastiggi
November 19, 2020

“On October 3, 2020, the vigil of the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi, Pope Francis issued his third papal encyclical. The title, Fratelli tutti — literally meaning “all brothers” — comes from an admonition of St. Francis of Assisi (ca. 1181–1226) to his Franciscan brothers and sisters to follow a way of life marked by the Gospel…”