Social justice cannot be attained by violence. Violence kills what it intends to create. ~ Pope John Paul II
It is necessary not only to relieve the greatest needs, but to go to their roots, proposing measures that will give social, political, and economic structures a more equitable and solidaristic configuration. ~ Pope Benedict XVI (Message to Mexican Bishops, Sept. 29, 2005)
Within the context of the secular world, the word justice has come to mean the carrying out and administration of laws and legal practices. However, it truly is a word with a much greater meaning. As Catholics, we are called to strive for the creation of a more just world for all, especially those who are less fortunate than ourselves. We must base our decision making processes, both political and social, on the idea of the common good. We must consider the fact that our decisions in our “secular” lives inevitably affect the lives of our neighbors and seek to instill our faith into all that we do. The Lord calls us to be responsible for one another, to care for the “least” among us, and to remain united as one human family. As social justice “is linked to the common good and the exercise of authority,” in order to declare that we are actively involved in its creation, we must approach all we do according to the teachings of the Church (CCC no. 1928).
The following is an excerpt from the U.S. Catholic Bishops article, entitled, “Sharing Catholic Social Teaching: Challenges and Directions”
“God reveals himself to us as one who is not alone, but rather as one who is relational, one who is Trinity. Therefore, we who are made in God's image share this communal, social nature. We are called to reach out and to build relationships of love and justice…"
As the Catechism of the Catholic Church explains, “To receive the truth in the Body and Blood of Christ given up for us, we must recognize Christ in the poorest, his brethren” (no. 1397).”
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