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The Roots of Catholic Social Justice Teachings: An historical overview Franciscan Sisters of Chicago Social Justice Committee 2007.

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Presentation on theme: "The Roots of Catholic Social Justice Teachings: An historical overview Franciscan Sisters of Chicago Social Justice Committee 2007."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Roots of Catholic Social Justice Teachings: An historical overview Franciscan Sisters of Chicago Social Justice Committee 2007

2 The Prophetic Tradition “The Spirit of our God is upon me; anointing me and sending me to bring glad tidings to the poor, to proclaim liberty to captives, recovery of sight to the blind and release to prisoners. To announce a year of favor from our God.” LUKE 4:18

3 – Pope Leo XIII Leo’s election changed the course of the papacy. He was a modern man of his times, and he worked, by preaching and writing, to bring Catholic attitudes into the modern world without losing it's core. He managed to end Kulturkampf in He tried to bring French Catholics to support the republic.papacy preachingwriting CatholicKulturkampf1887FrenchCatholics

4 – Pope Leo XIII His 1885 encyclical Immortale Dei explained the position of Catholics as citizens in modern secular, democratic states.1885encyclicalImmortale DeiCatholics He refuted the French royalists' claim that they were exceptional Catholics, and the French anti-Catholics contention that the Church was politically reactionary; overall he supported and vindicated Catholic democrats.FrenchCatholicsFrench antiCatholicsChurchCatholic He opposed the anti-Catholic government of Italy.antiCatholic Italy

5 – Pope Leo XIII In Rerum novarum in 1891, Leo explained the sad deficiencies of Marxism and gave an early warning of the misery it would inflict on the world.Marxism He countered intellectual attacks on Christianity by advancing Thomism, with its insistence that there is no conflict between science and faith; he wrote Aeterni Patris in 1879 in which he declared the philosophy of Saint Thomas Aquinas official, and required its study. He founded the institute of Thomistic philosophy at the University of Louvain.Christianity1879philosophyThomas Aquinasphilosophy

6 – Pope Leo XIII He opened the Vatican secret archives to scholars, and reminded Catholic historians that nothing but the whole truth must be found in their work.Catholic He encouraged Bible study, set up the permanent Biblical Commission in 1902, and sponsored the Catholic University at Washington, DC, USA.1902 First pope to have his voice recorded.pope The length of his reign, over 25 years, allowed him to stock the college of cardinals with many excellent men; he created 147 of them.cardinals

7 1891 – Rerum Novarum RERUM NOVARUM Lays out rights and responsibilities of capital and labor Describes proper role of government Condemns atheistic socialism

8 RERUM NOVARUM Paragraph 19: The great mistake … to take up with the notion that class is naturally hostile to class, and that the wealthy and the working men are intended by nature to live in mutual conflict. So irrational and so false is this view that the direct contrary is the truth.

9 RERUM NOVARUM Just as the symmetry of the human frame is the result of the suitable arrangement of the different parts of the body, so in a State is it ordained by nature that these two classes should dwell in harmony and agreement, so as to maintain the balance of the body politic.

10 RERUM NOVARUM Each needs the other: capital cannot do without labor, nor labor without capital. Mutual agreement results in the beauty of good order, while perpetual conflict necessarily produces confusion and savage barbarity.

11 RERUM NOVARUM Now, in preventing such strife as this, and in uprooting it, the efficacy of Christian institutions is marvellous and manifold.

12 RERUM NOVARUM First of all, there is no intermediary more powerful than religion (whereof the Church is the interpreter and guardian) in drawing the rich and the working class together, by reminding each of its duties to the other, and especially of the obligations of justice.

13 RERUM NOVARUM Paragraph 20: Of these duties, the following bind the proletarian and the worker: fully and faithfully to perform the work which has been freely and equitably agreed upon; never to injure the property, nor to outrage the person, of an employer; never to resort to violence in defending their own cause, nor to engage in riot or disorder; and to have nothing to do with men of evil principles, who work upon the people with artful promises of great results, and excite foolish hopes which usually end in useless regrets and grievous loss.

14 RERUM NOVARUM The following duties bind the wealthy owner and the employer: not to look upon their work people as their bondsmen, but to respect in every man his dignity as a person ennobled by Christian character. …working for gain is creditable, not shameful, to a man, since it enables him to earn an honorable livelihood; but to misuse men as though they were things in the pursuit of gain, or to value them solely for their physical powers - that is truly shameful and inhuman. Again justice demands that, in dealing with the working man, religion and the good of his soul must be kept in mind.

15 RERUM NOVARUM Hence, the employer is bound to see that the worker has time for his religious duties; that he be not exposed to corrupting influences and dangerous occasions; and that he be not led away to neglect his home and family, or to squander his earnings. Furthermore, the employer must never tax his work people beyond their strength, or employ them in work unsuited to their sex and age. His great and principal duty is to give every one what is just.

16 RERUM NOVARUM Doubtless, before deciding whether wages are fair, many things have to be considered; but wealthy owners and all masters of labor should be mindful of this - that to exercise pressure upon the indigent and the destitute for the sake of gain, and to gather one's profit out of the need of another, is condemned by all laws, human and divine.

17 RERUM NOVARUM To defraud any one of wages that are his due is a great crime which cries to the avenging anger of Heaven. "Behold, the hire of the laborers... which by fraud has been kept back by you, crieth; and the cry of them hath entered into the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth."(6)

18 RERUM NOVARUM Lastly, the rich must religiously refrain from cutting down the workmen's earnings, whether by force, by fraud, or by usurious dealing; and with all the greater reason because the laboring man is, as a rule, weak and unprotected, and because his slender means should in proportion to their scantiness be accounted sacred.

19 RERUM NOVARUM Were these precepts carefully obeyed and followed out, would they not be sufficient of themselves to keep under all strife and all its causes?

20 – Pope Pius XI Pius's pontificate, like his pre-papal career, was marked by great Papal legate to Poland in 1918; put the Church on good terms with the Polish government, and made some inroads with the Bolsheviks in Russia.Poland1918 He openly opposed the youth activities of Fascist governments, and he finally published the papal letter Non abbiamo bisogno in 1931; it showed one could not be both Fascist and Catholic. Relations between Mussolini and the Holy See deteriorated.

21 – Pope Pius XI Pius denounced the Nazi government and Nazi theory in Mit brennender Sorge in Soon after, he issued the analysis On Atheistic Communism, denounced persecutions in Russia, Mexico, and Spain, and was on unusually good terms with England, Holland, and France.

22 – Pope Pius XI Pius XI spoke out against nationalism racism anti-Semitism totalitarianism He established the new feast of Christ the King to recall the rights of religion in the state.

23 – Pope Pius XI Pope Pius XI thought little of laissez- faire capitalism, and urged social reform in the 1931 encyclical Quadragesimo anno. He called for greater participation by the laity, a movement he called Catholic Action. He supported missionary work, but wanted to integrate Christianity with native cultures instead of making them European.

24 To protect Eastern rite Catholics from Latin influence, Pope Pius XI augmented their congregation, established a commission to study their canon law, exhorted Western Catholics to embrace their brothers of the various Eastern rites.

25 Quadragesimo Anno QUADRAGESIMO ANNO Decries the effects of greed and concentrated economic power on working people and society Proposes a society based on subsidiarity

26 – Pope John XXIII Pope John XXIII held office for only 5 years He had spent 25 years as a papal diplomat for Bulgaria, Turkey and France, and six years as archbishop of Venice, not being elected pope until he was 77. Pope John XXIII is perhaps best known for convening the second ecumencial council at the Vatican, known as Vatican II.

27 – Pope John XXIII Vatican II is that it differed from previous councils in a very important manner. Earlier councils were typically convened in order to correct some popular doctrinal error. He envisaged a council which would positive instead of negative. which promoted mercy, faith and the pastoral role of the church rather than simply strict adherence to a new statement of orthodoxy.

28 – Pope John XXIII He even went so far as to label Vatican II a "new Pentecost“ His vision of it as a new beginning The role which the Holy Spirit played in his religious life and in his religious style. For John, Christianity was not simply a matter of legalisms and doctrines but rather a way of living in communion with the love of God. This was an important reason for why he became so popular among Catholics.

29 1961 – Pope John XXIII MATER ET MAGISTRA Deplores widening gap between rich and poor nations, arms race and plight of farmers Calls Christians to work for a more just world

30 1963 – Pope John XXIII PACEM IN TERRIS Affirms full range of human rights as the basis for peace Calls for disarmament and a world-wide public authority to promote universal common good

31 1963 – Pope John XXIII “Beginning our discussion of the rights of the human person, we see that everyone has the right to life, to bodily integrity, and to the means which are suitable for the proper development of life; these are primarily food, clothing, shelter, rest, medical care, and finally the necessary social services. ” (PACEM IN TERRIS, #11)

32 1965 – Vatican Council GAUDIUM ET SPES Laments growing world poverty and threat of nuclear war States responsibility of Christians to work for structures to make a more just and peaceful world

33 – Pope Paul VI As Pope, Paul continued the reforms of John XXIII. He reconvened the Second Vatican Council, and supervised implementations of many of its reforms, such as the vernacularization and reform of the liturgy.PopeJohn XXIII He instituted an international synod of bishops; bishops were instructed to set up councils of priests in their own dioceses.bishops priests Powers of dispensation devolved from the Roman Curia onto the bishops, rules on fasting and abstinence were relaxed, and some restrictions on intermarriage were lifted.bishops A commission to revise canon law revision was established.

34 – Pope Paul VI In 1964, Paul made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land and became the first pope in over 150 years to leave Italy1964 India in 1964India1964 United States in 1965United States1965 Africa in 1969Africa1969 Southeast Asia in Relations between the Vatican and the Communists improved, and Communist leaders visited the Vatican for the first time.CommunistsCommunist

35 – Pope Paul VI Paul met with leaders of other churches, and in 1969 addressed the World Council of Churches, and limited doctrinal agreements were reached with the Anglicans and Lutherans. 1969Anglicans He enlarged the college of cardinals, and added cardinals from third world countries.cardinals

36 1967 – Pope Paul VI POPULORUM PROGRESSO Affirms right of poor nations to full human development Decries economic structures promoting inequality Calls for new international organizations and agreements

37 1971 – Pope Paul VI OCTOGESIMA ADVENIENS Calls for political action for economic justice Develops the role of individual Christians and local churches in responding to unjust situations

38 1971 – Synod of Bishops JUSTICE IN THE WORLD Names action for justice a constituent part of being a Christian Calls the church to model the justice she preaches

39 1975 – Pope Paul VI EVANGELII NUNTIANDI Notes the dramatic societal changes and their challenges to the church Calls evangelization the transforming of all aspects of life from within

40 1979 – Pope John Paul II REDEMPTOR HOMINIS Describes the treats to human dignity and freedom States that current economic and political structures are inadequate to remedy injustice

41 1981 – Pope John Paul II LABOREM EXCERCENS Affirms the dignity of work based on the dignity of the worker Calls for workplace justice as a responsibility of society, employer, worker

42 1986 – National Conference of Catholic Bishops ECONOMIC JUSTICE FOR ALL: CATHOLIC SOCIAL JUSTICE TEACHING AND THE U.S. ECONOMY Applies the major principles of Catholic social teaching to the structure of the United States economy Provides a moral perspective on the economy and assesses the economy’s impact on people who are poor

43 1987 – Pope John Paul II SOLLICITUDO REI SOCIALIS Names East-West blocs and other “structures of sin” which hinder the development of poor nations Calls for solidarity and for an option for the poor by affluent nations

44 1991 – Pope John Paul II CENTESIMUS ANNO Reaffirms principles of Rerum Novarum Identifies failures of both socialist and market economies Calls for a society of free work, enterprise and participation

45 Pope Benedict XVI DEUS CARITAS EST Charity as a responsibility of the Church “The Church's deepest nature is expressed in her three-fold responsibility: proclaiming the word of God (kerygma-martyria), celebrating the sacraments (leitourgia) exercising the ministry of charity (diakonia).”

46 Pope Benedict XVI “The Church is God's family in the world. In this family no one ought to go without the necessities of life. Yet at the same time caritas- agape extends beyond the frontiers of the Church. Following the example given in the parable of the Good Samaritan, Christian charity is first of all the simple response to immediate needs and specific situations: feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, caring for and healing the sick, visiting those in prison, etc. “

47 Pope Benedict XVI “Christian charitable activity must be independent of parties and ideologies. Charity, furthermore, cannot be used as a means of engaging in what is nowadays considered proselytism. Love is free; it is not practised as a way of achieving other ends.“

48 References

49 Credits Created by Sister Jeanne Marie Toriskie, OSF, PhD


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