EG 207-208: Final Words on Economy and Distribution

Vasnetsov_Maria_MagdalenePope Francis offers two final thoughts on “The economy and the distribution of income.” The first is for the Church:

207. Any Church community, if it thinks it can comfortably go its own way without creative concern and effective cooperation in helping the poor to live with dignity and reaching out to everyone, will also risk breaking down, however much it may talk about social issues or criticize governments. It will easily drift into a spiritual worldliness camouflaged by religious practices, unproductive meetings and empty talk.

This is a genuine worry. One key bit I read is the need to reach out to everyone, and not contain efforts at justice to the committee rooms, the letter-writing campaigns, and the other forms of expressive outrage. Connecting with real people is part of the Gospel call itself, and we cannot avoid it.

Some words to his opponents:

208. If anyone feels offended by my words, I would respond that I speak them with affection and with the best of intentions, quite apart from any personal interest or political ideology. My words are not those of a foe or an opponent. I am interested only in helping those who are in thrall to an individualistic, indifferent and self-centred mentality to be freed from those unworthy chains and to attain a way of living and thinking which is more humane, noble and fruitful, and which will bring dignity to their presence on this earth.

Evangelii Gaudium is online for anyone to read.

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About catholicsensibility

Todd and his family live in Ames, Iowa. He serves a Catholic parish of both Iowa State students and town residents.
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