In his Sunday Angelus address Pope Francis himself spoke about the document, saying that "this encyclical is addressed to all."
He invited the world to participate in its June 18 publication "with a renewed attention to environmental degradation, but also to recovery" of one's own territory.
He prayed that everyone "may receive its message and grow in responsibility toward the common home God has entrusted to us."
In a recent editorial, the Rome-based, Jesuit-published magazine La Civilta Cattolica reflected on the encyclical's importance and on the challenges facing the Pope in the area of scientific consensus, including climate change.
Debates about environmental responsibilities have consequences for the well-being of humanity, La Civilta Cattolica said. They are not simply campaigns to save a rare animal or plant, though these can be important. Rather, the debate is about how to ensure that "hundreds of millions of people have clean water to drink and clean air to breathe."
"This is a serious moral responsibility which we can no longer remove ourselves from. Failure to respond would be a sin of omission," the editorial said.
On the topic of climate change, La Civilta Cattolica said it is "not contested" that the planet is warming. It cited the "very stark" November 2014 Synthesis Report of the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
"Just like most of us, Pope Francis faces the challenge, in preparing his encyclical, of properly appreciating the scientific consensus about climate change, its causes and consequences, and the needed remedies," the magazine continued.
At the same time, it said that even when those in environmental debates do not agree on some research findings, there are problems that are "obvious and need the attention of the faithful." These include water pollution, "monocultures" that harm the ground and people's livelihoods, and the extinction of plant and animal species.
The editorial countered the vision of "a moment of doom" in which human greed, stupidity, carelessness and pride have caused irreversible damage leading to self-destruction.
Rather, it suggested that this moment is an opportunity.
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"For the first time, in a mature way, we have to exercise a common responsibility for the earth, our common home," La Civilta Cattolica said.
With all global eyes turned toward Francis to set a moral tone on the topic of the environment, "the world's leading religious leader will draw upon his faith, upon the teaching of the Church, and upon the best information and advice available, demonstrating how each of us can manage, gather and sift the information, to judge, to decide and, finally, to act," the editorial said.
"His goal is not to speculate nor to support this or that theory, but to invite people of goodwill to consider thoroughly their responsibility for future generations, and to act accordingly."