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  1. caroline says:

    In the American context of today, does bourgeois mean just middle class? Or is the author using it in a 19th century French context?

    • Gordon Campbell says:

      I think he’s referring to grasping material values as expressed by prosperity gospel.

      The five he named as examples are not just financial Martyrs,especially St Gianna.

      I have always regarded Dorothy Day as a quasi-communist and considering her conversion I can see why.She advocated the Catholic economic theory of distributism.In the first years of the Catholic Worker, Day provided a clear statement of how her individualism contrasted with Communism.(Not a great DEAL of difference as far as I can see and it IS contradictory and eminently unfeasible.)

      “We believe in widespread private property(?), the de-proletarianizing(?) of our American people. We believe in the individual owning the means of production(?), the land and his tools(?). We are opposed to the “finance capitalism”(?) so justly criticized and condemned by Karl Marx but we believe there can be a Christian capitalism as there can be a Christian Communism(?).”

      A Communist by any other name is STILL a Communist-Communism may work well within small sects in agrarian settings such as Hutteriteism but one cannot force it upon an Idustrialized Nation WITHOUT FORCE. She is naive in the extreme but she’s Venerable although no Saint is PERFECT.

      I admire her for her personal commitment but not even Christ advocated what she herself advocated.

      The Middle Class ain’t middle anymore and it certainly ain’t Boogie.We toil in quiet desperation paying EVERYONE’S bills.

      • Anonymous says:

        Amen.

      • Gordon, why the question marks? There is nothing odd about the notion of capital-producing property being widely owned. As for “finance capitalism”, Karl Marx may have criticized it, Pius XI certainly did! Read paragraphs 105 & 106 of Quadragesimo Anno, for starters…

        But odder is your reference to Day’s support of Distributism as evidence of her being a “quasi-communist”! Distributism advocates for the widest property ownership by individuals, communism advocates for the elimination of property ownership by individuals. Hardly “quasi” to the each other, they are directly oppposed.

        You cite from a good link, though. Folks should read it for themselves. http://dorothyday.catholicworker.org/articles/300.html

        • Gordon Campbell says:

          That’s your slant.You’re obviously a socialist as was Dorothy Day.My question marks illustrate the dichotomy of what idealized Communism and REAL Communism are.

          Communism has never produced ANYTHING other than the equal distribution of misery for the Plebeians and VERY special benefits for the Commissars.And oceans of BLOOD.

          Ultimately Communism must be imposed by force. Pius XI’s statement was hardly infallible and I will conduct myself according to the Catechism of the Catholic Church.Catholicism is NOT Communistic,no matter what heterodox Liberals would have one believe.

          It will be MY hand in my wallet providing charity to others NOT a GOVERNMENT ‘ S.

          “But odder is your reference to Day’s support of Distributism as evidence of her being a “quasi-communist””….”…. as there can be a Christian Communism.”Her words not mine.

          Our Lord did not come into the world to change Monetary and Governance issues-He came to save souls.His Sermon on the Mount reflects INDIVIDUAL responsibility not Governmental.

          I trust NO ONE who quotes Karl Marx-a Venerable or not.

          • I have spoken approvingly of Distributism, which relies upon increased private ownership of property, not Socialism, which relies upon decreased private ownership of poverty, so how I could be a socialist, let alone “obviously” a socialist, escapes me.

            As for Pius XI, he most certainly was not a communist, although such common-sense observations of his as this : “…by hiding under the shelter of a joint (Corporate) name, the worst of injustices and frauds are penetrated”, he no doubt earns you calling him one.

            http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/pius_xi/encyclicals/documents/hf_p-xi_enc_19310515_quadragesimo-anno_en.html

        • So that no one may confuse Church teaching with the opinions of those posting – – – –

          CCC: ” 2411 Contracts are subject to COMMUTATIVE justice which regulates exchanges between persons and between institutions in accordance with a strict respect for their rights.
          Commutative justice obliges strictly;
          it requires safeguarding property rights, paying debts, and fulfilling obligations freely contracted.
          Without commutative justice, no other form of justice is possible.
          One distinguishes commutative justice from LEGAL justice which concerns what the citizen owes in fairness to the community,
          and from DISTRIBUTIVE justice which regulates what the community owes its citizens in proportion to their contributions and needs. ”

          The Church does not teach Communism. The Catholic Worker was a communist newspaper – which means not Catholic.

          CCC: ” 1885 The principle of subsidiarity is opposed to all forms of collectivism.
          It sets limits for state intervention. It aims at harmonizing the relationships between individuals and societies. It tends toward the establishment of true international order.”

          • MATT, you are correct that the Church does not teach communism. Also, as we all know, the Church was and remains steadfastly opposed to communism. The same Church has also opened Dorothy Day’s cause for canonization.

            You should realize that the Church cannot be in conflict with itself.

  2. Money can be evil, as the Bible says it is the root of all evil. However, there is good that comes from money. Without money, how could the Church function? Sure, heavenly treasures are more valuable, but we do need money in order to survive. It all depends on how it is used, and how it is obtained. It is like a previous metal. Gold and silver can be made into chalices or religious art which are used to glorify God. We need funds to conduct our daily affairs, but money and precious metals are not to be glorified, and honored in themselves. It would be great if we could use the barter system, but now a days it is probably impractical. Greed is the sin, and one can be greedy not only in financial ways, but in other means as well. One could be greedy for food (as the Romans did). By putting God first, and loving our neighbor as ourselves, money can be used properly. But to condemn it totally is wrong.

    • The Bible does not say that money is the root of all evil. It says the “LOVE” of money is the root of all evil.

      • Anonymous says:

        Ed you are correct.
        1 Tim 6:10
        ” For the love of money is the root of all evils; it is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced their hearts with many pangs.”

        Objects by themselves are not evil.
        It all depends how they are idolized or used.

  3. Yes, Brian S, due to some US socialist Bishops including Dolan, the Church is looking at the Canonization of Dorothy Day.
    This would not be the first time some US Bishops ignored the true teachings of the Church.

    Haven’t you ever wondered why so many US Bishops do not actively and publically encourage the reading the of CCC by the Laity – ignoring the repeated requests of Saint Pope John Paul II, Pope Benedict, and Pope Francis ?
    – – – – – – If you keep the Laity ignorant in Church teaching, you can push your own political agendas whatever they may be.

    The CCC is part of the Apostolic Constitution of the Church.
    I checked it out and Matt quoted the CCC correctly #2411 and #1855.

    CCC: CCC: ” 2411 Contracts are subject to COMMUTATIVE justice which regulates exchanges between persons and between institutions in accordance with a strict respect for their rights.
    Commutative justice obliges strictly;
    it requires safeguarding property rights, paying debts, and fulfilling obligations freely contracted.
    Without commutative justice, no other form of justice is possible.

    • Chris, it appears that you read 2411 as simply giving license to the sharks & the sharpies. That is not an orthodox position.

      As for your comtempt for US Bishops, try this statement from a former Bishop of Rome (paragraph 114 of Quadragesimo Anno) :

      “. … it can come even to the point that imperceptibly these ideas of the more moderate socialism will no longer differ from the desires and demands of those … striving to remold human society on the basis of Christian principles. For certain kinds of property, it is rightly contended, ought to be reserved to the State since they carry with them a dominating power so great that cannot without danger to the general welfare be entrusted to private individuals.”

      Does your contempt extend to Pius? Was he a communist?

      • Pius wrote for his time. (Approx 1952).
        Read Gaudium et Spes which concludes with the following notes: ” Some elements have a permanent value; others, only a transitory one. Consequently, the constitution must be interpreted according to the general norms of theological interpretation. Interpreters must bear in mind—especially in part two—the changeable circumstances which the subject matter, by its very nature, involves.”

        Brian S., start using the CCC for your quotes. Collectivism violates Church teaching.

        • In addition Brian you are quoting from an encyclical of Pius which does not carry the same weight as something written “Motu Proprio” such as the Compendium of the CCC (Pope Benedict), or promulgated as part of the Apostolic Constitution such as as the CCC (Pope John Paul II).

          • Quadragesimo Anno was written in 1933. Nothing in it conflicts with the CCC, no matter how determined you are to ignore Church teachings that conflict with your comfort.

  4. This discussion may be one of the most interesting in quite some time because it attempts to get to the meaning of and application of the Church’s social teachings. It is hard for an American to support any economic system that is not pure capitalism. It has worked wonders for us. On the other hand, every now and then the people (government) have had to step in and create some regulation of totally free capitalism. In much of Europe they practice a form of capitalism whereby the economic system is designed to serve the people rather than the people to support the economic system. How can any of us support what the banking system did to our country in the last few years? How can any of us support what the Congress has not done to regulate the economic system to help the people of our nation who have lost their life’s savings because of the lack of regulation, etc.? This discussion is getting to the heart of what it means to be Catholic and that definition is changing daily based on the teachings of our Pope.

    • Bob one, get the facts of the Church teaching from the “Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition” which is part of the Apostolic Constitution.

      This link will give you quotes about the CCC from all 3 of our last 3 Popes.
      “What Catholics REALLY Believe SOURCE”
      http://whatcatholicsreallybelieve.com/

      Another poster wants to redirect Church teaching to meet his desires, by picking and choosing parts of old encyclicals so people will not know the truth.
      Things promulgated by Popes through Motu Proprio, or as part of the Apostolic Constitution carry more weight than an encyclical which are written for specific times in history, rather than permanent church teaching.

    • Canisius says:

      Bob One, lack of regulation are you kidding me. Listen the main reason for the mortgage mess was preciously because they were considered insured by government, via Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac, if there was no insurance on the mortgage none of the traders would have been buying them up and then reselling them. You know why there is close to NO economic growth in the past 5 years is because of over regulation. You want a growing economy? start shutting down government en masse and throw the parasitic bureaucrats onto the unemployment line. Much like Pharoh Obama you seem to believe that only a growing government leads prosperity, well its not working and it won’t work.

  5. http://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc/index.htm
    From the Vatican –
    The CCC, and also the Compendium of the CCC (which is a shorter version and points back to the paragraphs in the CCC).

    CCC is part of Apostolic Constitution (from the Pope and Magisterium)
    Compendium is Motu Proprio.
    These are BINDING, Church teaching.

    We must remember that the teachings in the CCC must be taken in entirety.

  6. http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/motu_proprio/documents/hf_ben-xvi_motu-proprio_20121111_caritas_en.html

    Here is an Apostolic Letter issued Motu Proprio “On the Service of Charity which went into effect as Church law on Dec, 2012.
    http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/motu_proprio/documents/hf_ben-xvi_motu-proprio_20121111_caritas_en.html
    If anyone knows of violation of this, they should contact the appropriate Diocese Bishop, and/or the Vatican as directed in the Apostolic Letter.

    Of particular interest to us might be –
    ” ….. In carrying out their charitable activity, therefore, the various Catholic organizations should not limit themselves merely to collecting and distributing funds, but should show special concern for individuals in need and exercise a valuable educational function within the Christian community,
    helping people to appreciate the importance of sharing, respect and love in the spirit of the Gospel of Christ.
    The Church’s charitable activity at all levels must avoid the risk of becoming just another form of organized social assistance (cf. ibid., 31).”

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