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A man made great for and by the love of our Lord indeed – Catholicjules

From a homily on Ezekiel by Saint Gregory the Great, pope

For Christ’s love I do not spare myself in speaking of him

Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel. Note that a man whom the Lord sends forth as a preacher is called a watchman. A watchman always stands on a height so that he can see from afar what is coming. Anyone appointed to be a watchman for the people must stand on a height for all his life to help them by his foresight.

How hard it is for me to say this, for by these very words I denounce myself. I cannot preach with any competence, and yet insofar as I do succeed, still I myself do not live my life according to my own preaching.

I do not deny my responsibility; I recognize that I am slothful and negligent, but perhaps the acknowledgment of my fault will win me pardon from my just judge. Indeed when I was in the monastery I could curb my idle talk and usually be absorbed in my prayers. Since I assumed the burden of pastoral care, my mind can no longer be collected; it is concerned with so many matters.

I am forced to consider the affairs of the Church and of the monasteries. I must weigh the lives and acts of individuals. I am responsible for the concerns of our citizens. I must worry about the invasions of roving bands of barbarians, and beware of the wolves who lie in wait for my flock. I must become an administrator lest the religious go in want. I must put up with certain robbers without losing patience and at times I must deal with them in all charity.

With my mind divided and torn to pieces by so many problems, how can I meditate or preach wholeheartedly without neglecting the ministry of proclaiming the Gospel? Moreover, in my position I must often communicate with worldly men. At times I let my tongue run, for if I am always severe in my judgments, the worldly will avoid me, and I can never attack them as I would. As a result I often listen patiently to chatter. And because I too am weak, I find myself drawn little by little into idle conversation, and I begin to talk freely about matters which once I would have avoided. What once I found tedious I now enjoy.

So who am I to be a watchman, for I do not stand on the mountain of action but lie down in the valley of weakness? Truly the all-powerful Creator and Redeemer of mankind can give me in spite of my weaknesses a higher life and effective speech; because I love him, I do not spare myself in speaking of him.

Memorial – St Monica

Posted: August 27, 2013 by CatholicJules in Great Catholic Articles, Memory Book

From the Confessions of Saint Augustine, bishop
Let us gain eternal wisdom

The day was now approaching when my mother Monica would depart from this life; you knew that day, Lord, though we did not. She and I happened to be standing by ourselves at a window that overlooked the garden in the courtyard of the house. At the time we were in Ostia on the Tiber. We had gone there after a long and wearisome journey to get away from the noisy crowd, and to rest and prepare for our sea voyage. I believe that you, Lord, caused all this to happen in your own mysterious ways. And so the two of us, all alone, were enjoying a very pleasant conversation, forgetting the past and pushing on to what is ahead. We were asking one another in the presence of the Truth–for you are the Truth–what it would be like to share the eternal life enjoyed by the saints, which eye has not seen, nor ear heard, which has not even entered into the heart of man. We desired with all our hearts to drink from the streams of your heavenly fountain, the fountain of life.

That was the substance of our talk, though not the exact words. But you know, O Lord, that in the course of our conversation that day, the world and its pleasures lost all their attraction for us. My mother said: “Son, as far as I am concerned, nothing in this life now gives me any pleasure. I do not know why I am still here, since I have no further hopes in this world. I did have one reason for wanting to live a little longer: to see you become a Catholic Christian before I died. God has lavished his gifts on me in that respect, for I know that you have even renounced earthly happiness to be his servant. So what am I doing here?”

I do not really remember how I answered her. Shortly, within five days or thereabouts, she fell sick with a fever. Then one day during the course of her illness she became unconscious and for a while she was unaware of her surroundings. My brother and I rushed to her side but she regained consciousness quickly. She looked at us as we stood there and asked in a puzzled voice: “Where was I?”

We were overwhelmed with grief, but she held her gaze steadily upon us and spoke further: “Here you shall bury your mother.” I remained silent as I held back my tears. However, my brother haltingly expressed his hope that she might not die in a strange country but in her own land, since her end would be happier there. When she heard this, her face was filled with anxiety, and she reproached him with a glance because he had entertained such earthly thoughts. Then she looked at me and spoke: “Look what he is saying.” Thereupon she said to both of us: “Bury my body wherever you will; let not care of it cause you any concern. One thing only I ask you, that you remember me at the altar of the Lord wherever you may be.” Once our mother had expressed this desire as best she could, she fell silent as the pain of her illness increased.
——-

Let us pray….

Dear St Monica we seek your powerful intercession, kindly pray for all our family members who are obstinate with hardness of heart. May the love of Christ penetrate their hearts so that they might be redeemed in His love and be granted peace and joy in their lives.  Through Christ our Lord… Amen


“Jesus of Nazareth….is so intrinsically king that the title ‘King’ has become his name. By calling ourselves Christians, we label ourselves as followers of the king…. God did not intend Israel to have a Kingdom. The Kingdom was a result of Israel’s rebellion against God…. The law was to be Israel’s king, and, through the law, God himself… God yielded to Israel’s obstinacy and so devised a new kind of kingship for them. The King is Jesus; in Him God entered humanity and espoused it to himself. This is the usual form of the divine activity in relation to mankind. God does not have a fixed plan that he must carry out; on the contrary, he has many different ways of finding man and even of turning his wrong ways into right ways… The feast of Christ the King is therefore not a feast of those who are subjugated, but a feast of those who know that they are in the hands of the one who writes straight on crooked lines.” 
Pope Benedict XVI

Origins Of St Peter As Pope

Posted: July 18, 2012 by CatholicJules in Great Catholic Articles, Memory Book

 The New Testament contains five different metaphors for the foundation of the Church (Matt. 16:18, 1 Cor. 3:11, Eph. 2:20, 1 Pet. 2:5–6, Rev. 21:14). One metaphor that has been disputed is Jesus Christ’s calling the apostle Peter “rock”: “You are Peter, and on this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it” (Matt. 16:18). 

Some have tried to argue that Jesus did not mean that his Church would be built on Peter but on something else. 

Some argue that in this passage there is a minor difference between the Greek term for Peter (Petros) and the term for rock (petra), yet they ignore the obvious explanation: petra, a feminine noun, has simply been modifed to have a masculine ending, since one would not refer to a man (Peter) as feminine. The change in the gender is purely for stylistic reasons. 

These critics also neglect the fact that Jesus spoke Aramaic, and, as John 1:42 tells us, in everyday life he actually referred to Peter as Kepha or Cephas (depending on how it is transliterated). It is that term which is then translated into Greek as petros. Thus, what Jesus actually said to Peter in Aramaic was: “You are Kepha and on this very kepha I will build my Church.” 

The Church Fathers, those Christians closest to the apostles in time, culture, and theological background, clearly understood that Jesus promised to build the Church on Peter, as the following passages show. 

 Tatian the Syrian

 “Simon Cephas answered and said, ‘You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.’ Jesus answered and said unto him, ‘Blessed are you, Simon, son of Jonah: flesh and blood has not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. And I say unto thee also, that you are Cephas, and on this rock will I build my Church; and the gates of hades shall not prevail against it” (The Diatesseron 23 [A.D. 170]). 

 Tertullian

 “Was anything withheld from the knowledge of Peter, who is called ‘the rock on which the Church would be built’ [Matt. 16:18] with the power of ‘loosing and binding in heaven and on earth’ [Matt. 16:19]?” (Demurrer Against the Heretics 22 [A.D. 200]). 

“[T]he Lord said to Peter, ‘On this rock I will build my Church, I have given you the keys of the kingdom of heaven [and] whatever you shall have bound or loosed on earth will be bound or loosed in heaven’ [Matt. 16:18–19]. . . . What kind of man are you, subverting and changing what was the manifest intent of the Lord when he conferred this personally upon Peter? Upon you, he says, I will build my Church; and I will give to you the keys” (Modesty 21:9–10 [A.D. 220]). 

 The Letter of Clement to James

“Be it known to you, my lord, that Simon [Peter], who, for the sake of the true faith, and the most sure foundation of his doctrine, was set apart to be the foundation of the Church, and for this end was by Jesus himself, with his truthful mouth, named Peter” (Letter of Clement to James 2 [A.D. 221]). 

The Clementine Homilies

“[Simon Peter said to Simon Magus in Rome:] ‘For you now stand in direct opposition to me, who am a firm rock, the foundation of the Church’ [Matt. 16:18]” (Clementine Homilies 17:19 [A.D. 221]). 

Origen

“Look at [Peter], the great foundation of the Church, that most solid of rocks, upon whom Christ built the Church [Matt. 16:18]. And what does our Lord say to him? ‘Oh you of little faith,’ he says, ‘why do you doubt?’ [Matt. 14:31]” (Homilies on Exodus 5:4 [A.D. 248]). 

Cyprian of Carthage

“The Lord says to Peter: ‘I say to you,’ he says, ‘that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of hell will not overcome it. And to you I will give the keys of the kingdom of heaven . . . ’ [Matt. 16:18–19]. On him [Peter] he builds the Church, and to him he gives the command to feed the sheep [John 21:17], and although he assigns a like power to all the apostles, yet he founded a single chair [cathedra], and he established by his own authority a source and an intrinsic reason for that unity. Indeed, the others were that also which Peter was [i.e., apostles], but a primacy is given to Peter, whereby it is made clear that there is but one Church and one chair. . . . If someone does not hold fast to this unity of Peter, can he imagine that he still holds the faith? If he [should] desert the chair of Peter upon whom the Church was built, can he still be confident that he is in the Church?” (The Unity of the Catholic Church 4; 1st edition [A.D. 251]). 

“There is one God and one Christ, and one Church, and one chair founded on Peter by the word of the Lord. It is not possible to set up another altar or for there to be another priesthood besides that one altar and that one priesthood. Whoever has gathered elsewhere is scattering” (Letters 43[40]:5 [A.D. 253]). 

“There [John 6:68–69] speaks Peter, upon whom the Church would be built, teaching in the name of the Church and showing that even if a stubborn and proud multitude withdraws because it does not wish to obey, yet the Church does not withdraw from Christ. The people joined to the priest and the flock clinging to their shepherd are the Church. You ought to know, then, that the bishop is in the Church and the Church in the bishop, and if someone is not with the bishop, he is not in the Church. They vainly flatter themselves who creep up, not having peace with the priests of God, believing that they are 
secretly [i.e., invisibly] in communion with certain individuals. For the Church, which is one and Catholic, is not split nor divided, but it is indeed united and joined by the cement of priests who adhere one to another” (ibid., 66[69]:8). 

Firmilian

“But what is his error . . . who does not remain on the foundation of the one Church which was founded upon the rock by Christ [Matt. 16:18], can be learned from this, which Christ said to Peter alone: ‘Whatever things you shall bind on earth shall be bound also in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth, they shall be loosed in heaven’ [Matt. 16:19]” (collected in Cyprian’s Letters74[75]:16 [A.D. 253]). 

“[Pope] Stephen [I] . . . boasts of the place of his episcopate, and contends that he holds the succession from Peter, on whom the foundations of the Church were laid [Matt. 16:18]. . . . [Pope] Stephen . . . announces that he holds by succession the throne of Peter” (ibid., 74[75]:17). 

Ephraim the Syrian

“[Jesus said:] ‘Simon, my follower, I have made you the foundation of the holy Church. I betimes called you Peter, because you will support all its buildings. You are the inspector of those who will build on earth a Church for me. If they should wish to build what is false, you, the foundation, will condemn them. You are the head of the fountain from which my teaching flows; you are the chief of my disciples’” (Homilies 4:1 [A.D. 351]). 

Optatus

“You cannot deny that you are aware that in the city of Rome the episcopal chair was given first to Peter; the chair in which Peter sat, the same who was head—that is why he is also called Cephas [‘Rock’]—of all the apostles; the one chair in which unity is maintained by all” (The Schism of the Donatists 2:2 [A.D. 367]). 

Ambrose of Milan

“[Christ] made answer: ‘You are Peter, and upon this rock will I build my Church. . . . ’ Could he not, then, strengthen the faith of the man to whom, acting on his own authority, he gave the kingdom, whom he called the rock, thereby declaring him to be the foundation of the Church [Matt. 16:18]?” (The Faith 4:5 [A.D. 379]). 

“It is to Peter that he says: ‘You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church’ [Matt. 16:18]. Where Peter is, there is the Church. And where the Church is, no death is there, but life eternal” (Commentary on Twelve Psalms of David 40:30 [A.D. 389]). 

Pope Damasus I

“Likewise it is decreed . . . that it ought to be announced that . . . the holy Roman Church has not been placed at the forefront [of the churches] by the conciliar decisions of other churches, but has received the primacy by the evangelic voice of our Lord and Savior, who says: ‘You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it; and I will give to you the keys of the kingdom of heaven. . . . ’ [Matt. 16:18–19]. The first see, therefore, is that of Peter the apostle, that of the Roman Church, which has neither stain nor blemish nor anything like it” (Decree of Damasus 3 [A.D. 382]). 

Jerome

“‘But,’ you [Jovinian] will say, ‘it was on Peter that the Church was founded’ [Matt. 16:18]. Well . . . one among the twelve is chosen to be their head in order to remove any occasion for division” (Against Jovinian 1:26 [A.D. 393]). 

“I follow no leader but Christ and join in communion with none but your blessedness [Pope Damasus I], that is, with the chair of Peter. I know that this is the rock on which the Church has been built. Whoever eats the Lamb outside this house is profane. Anyone who is not in the ark of Noah will perish when the flood prevails” (Letters 15:2 [A.D. 396]). 

Augustine

“If the very order of episcopal succession is to be considered, how much more surely, truly, and safely do we number them [the bishops of Rome] from Peter himself, to whom, as to one representing the whole Church, the Lord said, ‘Upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of hell shall not conquer it.’ Peter was succeeded by Linus, Linus by Clement. … In this order of succession a Donatist bishop is not to be found” (Letters 53:1:2 [A.D. 412]). 

Council of Ephesus

“Philip, the presbyter and legate of the Apostolic See [Rome], said: ‘There is no doubt, and in fact it has been known in all ages, that the holy and most blessed Peter, prince and head of the apostles, pillar of the faith, and foundation of the Catholic Church, received the keys of the kingdom from our Lord Jesus Christ, the Savior and Redeemer of the human race, and that to him was given the power of loosing and binding sins: who down even to today and forever both lives and judges in his successors’” (Acts of the Council, session 3 [A.D. 431]). 

Sechnall of Ireland

“Steadfast in the fear of God, and in faith immovable, upon [Patrick] as upon Peter the [Irish] church is built; and he has been allotted his apostleship by God; against him the gates of hell prevail not” (Hymn in Praise of St. Patrick 3 [A.D. 444]). 

Pope Leo I

“Our Lord Jesus Christ . . . has placed the principal charge on the blessed Peter, chief of all the apostles. . . . He wished him who had been received into partnership in his undivided unity to be named what he himself was, when he said: ‘You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church’ [Matt. 16:18], that the building of the eternal temple might rest on Peter’s solid rock, strengthening his Church so surely that neither could human rashness assail it nor the gates of hell prevail against it” (Letters 10:1 [A.D. 445]). 

Council of Chalcedon

“Wherefore the most holy and blessed Leo, archbishop of the great and elder Rome, through us, and through this present most holy synod, together with the thrice blessed and all-glorious Peter the apostle, who is the rock and foundation of the Catholic Church, and the foundation of the orthodox faith, has stripped him [Dioscorus] of the episcopate” (Acts of the Council, session 3 [A.D. 451]). 

 

NIHIL OBSTAT: I have concluded that the materials 
presented in this work are free of doctrinal or moral errors. 
Bernadeane Carr, STL, Censor Librorum, August 10, 2004 

IMPRIMATUR: In accord with 1983 CIC 827
permission to publish this work is hereby granted. 
+Robert H. Brom, Bishop of San Diego, August 10, 2004

The Start of Repentance

Posted: July 17, 2012 by CatholicJules in Great Catholic Articles, Memory Book

But some one may say,”It is so very difficult to serve God, it is so much against my own mind, such an effort, such a strain upon my , strength to bear Christ’s yoke, I must give it over, or I must delay it at least. Can nothing be taken instead? I acknowledge his law to be most holy and true and the accounts I read about good men are most delightful.  I wish I were like them with all my heart; and for a little while I feel in a mind to set about imitating them.  I must have begun several times, I have had seasons of repentance, and set rules to myself; but for some reason or other, I fell back after a while, and was even worse than before. I know, but I cannot do. “O wretched man that I am!”

Now to such a one I say, You are in a much more promising state than if you were contented with yourself, and thought that knowledge was every thing, which is the grievous blindness which I have hitherto been speaking of; you are in a better state, if you do not feel too much comfort or confidence in your confession.  For this is the fault of many men; they make such an acknowledgement as I have described a substitute for real repentance; or allow themselves, after making it, to put off repentance, as if they could be suffered to give a word of promise which did not become due (so to say) for many days.  You are, I admit, in a better state than if you were satisfied with yourself.

Blessed John Henry Newman

+1890


I really wanted to attend this rally but could not as it was after a post night shift.  Anyhow my Brother in Christ Raymund did a great job I think of sharing with us the main points…..here is what he wrote….

Dear brothers & sisters in Christ,

This are points from Fr. William’s preaching today at the Rally. It is not a total transcript, but pretty much the main points of what I could type during his talk. Hope it helps you recap his preaching.

For those of you who could not make, you missed a truly awesome rally. Hope this benefits you.

God bless.

Ray

Deuteronomy 11:13 * If, then, you truly listen to my commandments which I give you today, loving and serving the LORD, your God, with your whole heart and your whole being,

3rd millennium world is changing rapidly mostly because of globalisation. Advancements in technology in different facets. We’re facing a very different world. Many people are replacing God with science and technology. Modern man thinks that S&T can solve all their problems and give them the answers they seek.

Secularismism denies the presence of God. It can take the form of hostility. Today, it is no fun in being a religious leader. Today, many have no respect for religious leaders, and more so, God.

When God is rejected, the consequences are great. God is becoming more absent in our lives. We don’t talk about talk because of secularism. It breeds relativism. There is no more reference point in what is moral and immorality. They question the bible.

What were facing today is the collapse of values. Our young people are not bothered about committing sin. They do not believe in what is right and wrong. So, sin is no a matter for consideration. Today we’re surrounded in a situation of what is right and wrong. Media plays a large part in this problem. Our young people are influenced by the media. Young people have different understanding of casual sex for example. They do not feel it is wrong because “everyone” is doing it!

Because of the loss and collapse of values – Satan is attacking our Catholic values thru the destruction of families and marriages. Our children, as a result of this, suffer greatly, and history tends to repeat itself in their own adult lives later on.

Attacking the family and the church! Marriage used to be primarily for procreation, and secondarily for companionship. Today, the roles are reversed. In the face of all this, what is our cry? “Renew the face of the Church”. Only God can bring about a renewal, a change in the world. the new evangelisation is the key to renewing the face of the church.

1. Re-evangelise our Catholics.

2.Reaching out to those who are yet to know Christ by using new techniques and methods. To bring a new understanding and encounter with Christ. A real conversion.

Many of our Catholics today are inviting new age spirituality.This is not Christian, or Catholic. Many people turn to this as it is a combination of different religions and Science and Technology (S&T). Centring prayer which is not Catholic at all. It bypasses Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. Christian prayer is a relationship with the Father, in the Son, through the Holy Spirit. The sole purpose of Jesus is to let us know who the Father is, and giving us the Holy Spirit. Christianity is not an impersonal relationship!

Many people are turning to the different forms of prayer because they do not know Jesus. Do you have a personal relationship with God? The Holy Spirit is critical in our relationship with God.

1 Corinthians 12:3 Therefore, I tell you that nobody speaking by the spirit of God says, “Jesus be accursed.” And no one can say, “Jesus is Lord,” except by the holy Spirit.

To know Jesus is the Lord is the work of the Holy Spirit. How does one know that God is Father? What sentiments do we have when we pray the ‘Our Father’? Who is the Father to us? Our concept of our Father, sometimes is not very great. Look at Jesus’ relationship with the Father – it is one of great intimacy.

Matthew 11:27 All things have been handed over to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son wishes to reveal him.

Jesus surrendered his life to the Father because He knew He was the Son. He knew His identity. Do we know our identity? The idea of sonship and daughtership is not real. It is just an idea. If we are truly conscious, we will behave accordingly. The Holy Spirit teaches us how to pray.

Romans 8:14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God.  Romans 8:15 For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you received a spirit of adoption, through which we cry, “Abba,* Father!”

Romans 8:16 The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,

Romans 8:26 In the same way, the Spirit too comes to the aid of our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit itself intercedes with inexpressible groanings.

Romans 8:27 And the one who searches hearts knows what is the intention of the Spirit, because it intercedes for the holy ones according to God’s will.

If our Christian lives are truly one of relationship, we will be conscious of that relationship! The Church is a sacrament of unity and love. The more intense our relationship with God, the more fulfilled we will be. We will not take God for granted. There is division in the world, in our families because there is no relationship.

In order to renew the face of the earth, we must heal the inner man. We all bear the consequences of the sins of our forefathers – Inter-generational sin/healing. We cannot inherit the sins of our forefathers. Many of us are living hypocritical lives. It is ok if you are aware of this and try to change for the better. We are all broken people – many of us are wounded emotionally, spiritually, and to an extent, physically.

The Holy Spirit not only gives us sonship, but also empowers us.

Romans 5:5 and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the holy Spirit that has been given to us.

1 John 4:9 In this way the love of God was revealed to us: God sent his only Son into the world so that we might have life through him.

1 John 4:10 In this is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as expiation for our sins.

1 John 4:11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also must love one another.

1 John 4:12 No one has ever seen God. Yet, if we love one another, God remains in us, and his love is brought to perfection in us.

1 John 4:13 * This is how we know that we remain in him and he in us, that he has given us of his Spirit.

The Holy Spirit restores us.

Wisdom, understanding and knowledge are very important to forming our faculties.

Fortitude is important in spiritual warfare. when we were baptised, we were give the 7 gifts of the Holy Spirit. One of the most important graces given to the Catholic Church is the Charismatic Renewal. This was emphasised by our Pope. If our sacraments are effective, it is because of the Holy Spirit. The baptism of the Holy Spirit makes us conscious of our baptismal spiritual gifts. That is why the LISS is important – to activate the gifts of the Holy Spirit. The spiritual gifts are meant for service.

1 Cor 12 – 1 Cor 14

The Charismatic Renewal builds communities. Praying freely in the Spirit. We are not purely spirit – we should pray in body and spirit. We should pray for the renewal of Pentecost. We needn’t be Catholics to receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Remember Cornelius in Acts. Believing in the power of prayer and intercession.

The End.


Key Principle Of Catholic Social Teaching

Posted: February 26, 2012 by CatholicJules in Great Catholic Articles, Memory Book

Human Dignity

In a world warped by materialism and declining respect for human life, the Catholic Church proclaims that human life is sacred and that the dignity of the person is the foundation of a moral vision for society.  Our belief in the sanctity of human life and the inherent dignity of the human person is the foundation of all the principles of our social teaching.

Community and the Common Good

In a global culture driven by excessive individualism, our tradition proclaims that the person is not only sacred but also social.  How we organize our society — in economics and politics, in law and policy — directly affects human dignity and the capacity of individuals to grow in community.  Our Church teaches that the role of the government and other institutions is to protect human life and promote the common good.

Rights and Responsibilities

Catholic tradition teaches that human dignity can be protected and a healthy community can be achieved only if human rights are protected and responsibilities are met.  Therefore, every person has a fundamental right to life and a right to those things required for human decency.  Corresponding to these rights are duties and responsibilities — to one another, to our families and to the larger society.

Option for the Poor And Vulnerable

Catholic teaching proclaims that a basic moral test is how our most vulnerable members are faring.  In a society marred by deepening divisions between rich and poor, our tradition recalls the story of the Last Judgement (Mt.25) and instructs us to put the needs of the poor and vulnerable first.

Participation

All people have a right to participate in the economic, political and cultural life of society.  It is a fundamental demand of justice and a requirement for human dignity that all people be assured a minimum level of participation in the community.  Conversely, it is wrong for a person or a group to be excluded unfairly or to be unable to participate in society.  In the words of the U.S. bishops, “The ultimate injustice is for a person or group to be treated actively or abandoned passively as if they were non-members of the human race.  To treat people this way is effectively to say they simply do not count as human beings.”

Dignity of Work and Rights of Workers

In a marketplace where too often the quarterly bottom line takes precedence over the rights of workers, we believe that the economy must serve people, not the other way around.  If the dignity of work is to be protected, then the basic rights of workers must be respected — the right to productive work, to decent and fair wages, to organize and join unions, to private property and to economic initiative.

Stewardship of Creation

Catholic tradition insists that we show our respect for the Creator by our stewardship of creation.  We are called to protect people and the planet, living our faith in relationship with all of God’s creation.  This environmental challenge has fundamental moral and ethical dimensions which cannot be ignored.

Solidarity

Catholic social teaching proclaims that we are our brothers’ and sisters’ keepers, wherever they live.  We are one human family, whatever our national, racial, ethnic, economic, and ideological differences.  Solidarity means that “loving our neighbour” has global dimensions in an interdependent world.

Role of Government

Because we are social beings, the state is natural to the person.  Therefore, the state has a positive moral function.  It is an instrument to promote human dignity, protect human rights, and build the common good.  It’s purpose is to assist citizens in fulfilling their responsibility to others in society.  Since, in a large and complex society these responsibilities cannot adequately be carried out on a one-to-one basis, citizens need the help of government in fulfilling these responsibilities and promoting the common good.  According to the principle of subsidiarity, the functions of government should be performed at the lowest level possible, as long as they can be performed adequately.  If they cannot, then a higher level of government should intervene to provide help.

Promotion of Peace

Catholic teaching promotes peace as a positive, action-oriented concept.  In the words of Pope John Paul II, “Peace is not just the absence of war.  It involves collaboration and binding agreements.”  There is a close relationship in Catholic teaching between peace and justice.  Peace is the fruit of justice and is dependent upon right order among human beings.