Monday, October 24, 2011

Vatican Document on World Finances Released

The Vatican did indeed release a document on the world economy today.

In it, they suggest an impartial "world Authority" that would serve the common good.  This world Authority would be developed gradually, making sure not to serve the interests of "private lobbies or national governments... A person is not made to serve authority unconditionally" the document says. "Rather it is the task of authority to be at the service of the person, consistent with the pre-eminent value of human dignity."

The Vatican, in keeping with Christian teaching, sees this world Authority being "in service of various member countries according to the principle of subsidiarity".  Subsidiarity is the idea that nothing should be done by larger governing bodies that could be done at the more local level.  In short, "Think globally, act locally."

The document, entitled Towards Reforming the International Financial and Monetary Systems in the Context of Global Public Authority, says "the global social justice" policy "seems most urgent" and calls for "financial and monetary policies that will not damage the weakest countries; and policies aimed at achieving free and stable markets and a fair distribution of world wealth."

As much as many of us in the richer countries bristle at the idea of any sort of distributism (also known as "distributivism and "distributionism") it is the fair and Christian thing to do. We are our brothers' keepers and half the worlds children live in poverty. Catholicism is a global religion and the Church is rightly concerned with justice and basic rights of all her children.

To read the entire document visit Whispers in the Loggia.  For more info on distributism, visit The Distributist Review and this page on Distributivism and Catholic Social Teaching.

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"Slavery ended in medieval Europe only because the church extended its sacraments to all slaves and then managed to impose a ban on the enslavement of Christians (and of Jews). Within the context of medieval Europe, that prohibition was effectively a rule of universal abolition. "— Rodney Stark

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