Thursday, March 20, 2014
Matthew 24, 29-31 + CSDC and CV
(CV 37c) In the global era, the economy is influenced by competitive models tied to cultures that differ greatly among themselves. The different forms of economic enterprise to which they give rise find their main point of encounter in commutative justice. Economic life undoubtedly requires contracts, in order to regulate relations of exchange between goods of equivalent value. But it also needs just laws and forms of redistribution governed by politics, and what is more, it needs works redolent of the spirit of gift. The economy in the global era seems to privilege the former logic, that of contractual exchange, but directly or indirectly it also demonstrates its need for the other two: political logic, and the logic of the unconditional gift.
CSDC 160a. The permanent principles of the Church's social doctrine  constitute the very heart of Catholic social teaching. These are the principles of: the dignity of the human person, which has already been dealt with in the preceding chapter, and which is the foundation of all the other principles and content of the Church's social doctrine;  the common good; subsidiarity; and solidarity.
Notes:  Cf. Congregation for Catholic Education, Guidelines for the Study and Teaching of the Church's Social Doctrine in the Formation of Priests, 29-42, Vatican Polyglot Press, Rome 1988, pp. 35-43.  Cf. John XXIII, Encyclical Letter Mater et Magistra: AAS 53 (1961), 453.
 "Immediately after the tribulation of those days, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.  And then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming upon the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.  And he will send out his angels with a trumpet blast, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.
CSDC 383. The Church proclaims that Christ, the conqueror of death, reigns over the universe that he himself has redeemed. His kingdom includes even the present times and will end only when everything is handed over to the Father and human history is brought to completion in the final judgment (cf. 1 Cor 15:20-28). Christ reveals to human authority, always tempted by the desire to dominate, its authentic and complete meaning as service. God is the one Father, and Christ the one Teacher, of all mankind, and all people are brothers and sisters. Sovereignty belongs to God. The Lord, however, “has not willed to reserve to himself all exercise of power. He entrusts to every creature the functions it is capable of performing, according to the capacities of its own nature. This mode of governance ought to be followed in social life. The way God acts in governing the world, which bears witness to such great regard for human freedom, should inspire the wisdom of those who govern human communities. They should behave as ministers of divine providence”. The biblical message provides endless inspiration for Christian reflection on political power, recalling that it comes from God and is an integral part of the order that he created. This order is perceived by the human conscience and, in social life, finds its fulfilment in the truth, justice, freedom and solidarity that bring peace.
Notes:  Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1884.  Cf. John XXIII, Encyclical Letter Pacem in Terris: AAS 55 (1963), 266-267, 281-291, 301-302; John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Sollicitudo Rei Socialis, 39: AAS 80 (1988), 566-568.
[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)]