Thursday, March 13, 2014
Matthew 23, 25-28 + CSDC and CV
(CV 36a) Economic activity cannot solve all social problems through the simple application of commercial logic. This needs to be directed towards the pursuit of the common good, for which the political community in particular must also take responsibility. Therefore, it must be borne in mind that grave imbalances are produced when economic action, conceived merely as an engine for wealth creation, is detached from political action, conceived as a means for pursuing justice through redistribution. The Church has always held that economic action is not to be regarded as something opposed to society. In and of itself, the market is not, and must not become, the place where the strong subdue the weak. Society does not have to protect itself from the market, as if the development of the latter were ipso facto to entail the death of authentically human relations.
CSDC 104a. The documents referred to here constitute the milestones of the path travelled by the Church's social doctrine from the time of Pope Leo XIII to our own day. This brief summary would become much longer if we considered all the interventions motivated, other than by a specific theme, by “the pastoral concern to present to the entire Christian community and to all men of good will the fundamental principles, universal criteria and guidelines suitable for suggesting basic choices and coherent practice for every concrete situation”.
Notes:  Congregation for Catholic Education, Guidelines for the Study and Teaching of the Church's Social Doctrine in the Formation of Priests, 27, Vatican Polyglot Press, Rome 1988, p. 33.
 "Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites. You cleanse the outside of cup and dish, but inside they are full of plunder and self-indulgence.  Blind Pharisee, cleanse first the inside of the cup, so that the outside also may be clean.  "Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites. You are like whitewashed tombs, which appear beautiful on the outside, but inside are full of dead men's bones and every kind of filth.  Even so, on the outside you appear righteous, but inside you are filled with hypocrisy and evildoing.
CSDC 528. The Church's social doctrine is an indispensable reference point for a totally integrated Christian formation. The insistence of the Magisterium in proposing this doctrine as a source of inspiration for the apostolate and for social action comes from the conviction that it constitutes an extraordinary resource for formation; “this is especially true for the lay faithful who have responsibilities in various fields of social and public life. Above all, it is indispensable that they have a more exact knowledge... of the Church's social doctrine”. This doctrinal patrimony is neither taught nor known sufficiently, which is part of the reason for its failure to be suitably reflected in concrete behaviour.
Notes:  Cf. John Paul II, Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation Christifideles Laici, 60: AAS 81 (1989), 511.
[Initials and Abbreviations.- CSDC: Pontifical Council for Justice And Peace, Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church; - SDC: Social Doctrine of the Church; - CV: Benedict XVI, Caritas in Veritate (Charity in truth)]