Monday, March 31, 2014
Matthew 26, 6-9 + CSDC and CV
(CV 40e) John Paul II taught that investment always has moral, as well as economic significance . All this — it should be stressed — is still valid today, despite the fact that the capital market has been significantly liberalized, and modern technological thinking can suggest that investment is merely a technical act, not a human and ethical one. There is no reason to deny that a certain amount of capital can do good, if invested abroad rather than at home. Yet the requirements of justice must be safeguarded, with due consideration for the way in which the capital was generated and the harm to individuals that will result if it is not used where it was produced .
Notes:  Cf. Encyclical Letter Centesimus Annus, 36: loc. cit., 838-840.  Cf. Paul VI, Encyclical Letter Populorum Progressio, 24: loc. cit., 269.
CSDC 186b. On the basis of this principle, all societies of a superior order must adopt attitudes of help (“subsidium”) — therefore of support, promotion, development — with respect to lower-order societies. In this way, intermediate social entities can properly perform the functions that fall to them without being required to hand them over unjustly to other social entities of a higher level, by which they would end up being absorbed and substituted, in the end seeing themselves denied their dignity and essential place. Subsidiarity, understood in the positive sense as economic, institutional or juridical assistance offered to lesser social entities, entails a corresponding series of negative implications that require the State to refrain from anything that would de facto restrict the existential space of the smaller essential cells of society. Their initiative, freedom and responsibility must not be supplanted.
 Now when Jesus was in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper,  a woman came up to him with an alabaster jar of costly perfumed oil, and poured it on his head while he was reclining at table.  When the disciples saw this, they were indignant and said, "Why this waste?  It could have been sold for much, and the money given to the poor."
CSDC 581. Love must be present in and permeate every social relationship. This holds true especially for those who are responsible for the good of peoples. They “must earnestly cherish in themselves, and try to rouse in others, charity, the mistress and the queen of virtues. For, the happy results we all long for must be chiefly brought about by the plenteous outpouring of charity; of that true Christian charity which is the fulfilling of the whole Gospel law, which is always ready to sacrifice itself for the sake of others, and is man's surest antidote against worldly pride and immoderate love of self”. This love may be called “social charity” or “political charity”  and must embrace the entire human race. “Social love” is the antithesis of egoism and individualism. Without absolutizing social life, as happens with short-sighted perspectives limiting themselves to sociological interpretations, it must not be forgotten that the integral development of the person and social growth mutually influence each other. Selfishness, therefore, is the most insidious enemy of an ordered society. History shows how hearts are devastated when men and women are incapable of recognizing other values or other effective realities apart from material goods, the obsessive quest for which suffocates and blocks their ability to give of themselves.
Notes:  Cf. Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1889.  Leo XIII, Encyclical Letter Rerum Novarum: Acta Leonis XIII, 11 (1892), 143; cf. Benedict XV, Encyclical Letter Pacem Dei: AAS 12 (1920), 215.  Cf. Saint Thomas Aquinas, QD De caritate, a. 9, c; Pius XI, Encyclical Letter Quadragesimo Anno: AAS 23 (1931), 206-207; John XXIII, Encyclical Letter Mater et Magistra: AAS 53 (1961), 410; Paul VI, Address to FAO (16 November 1970), 11: AAS 62 (1970), 837-838; John Paul II, Address to the Members of the Pontifical Commission “Iustitia et Pax” (9 February 1980), 7: AAS 72 (1980), 187.  Cf. Paul VI, Apostolic Letter Octogesima Adveniens, 46: AAS 63 (1971), 433-435.  Cf. Second Vatican Ecumenical Council, Decree Apostolicam Actuositatem, 8: AAS 58 (1966), 844-845; Paul VI, Encyclical Letter Populorum Progressio, 44: AAS 59 (1967), 279; John Paul II, Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation Christifideles Laici, 42: AAS 81 (1989), 472-476; Catechsim of the Catholic Church, 1939.  John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Redemptor Hominis, 15: AAS 71 (1979), 288.
[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)]