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Arkansas Catholic
Little Rock, Arkansas
February 18, 1990     Arkansas Catholic
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February 18, 1990

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13 ARKANSAS CATHOLIC FEBRUARY 18, 1990 U. S. Bishops economy Every economic decision and institu- be judged in light of whether it or undermines the dignity of the We believe the person is " the clearest reflection of God Human dignity comes from not from nationality, race, sex, status, or any human accom- We judge any economic bywhat it does for and to people how it permits all to participate :! The economy should serve people not the other way around. HUman dignity can be realized and in community. In our teach- the human person is not only sacred d' o social. How we organize our " in economics and politics, in politics, in law and policy - affects human dignity and the 9acity of individuals to grow in The obligation to "love our an individual dimension, it also requires a broader, social to the common good. We partial ways to measure and the health of our economy: aal Product, per capita ThStock market prices, and so e Christian vision of economic beyond them all and asks, Oes economic life enhance or our life together as a commu- have a right to participate eCOnomic life of society. Basic |us- that people be assured a of participation in the For example, people who are t willing, but cannot get a of the participation to human development. employment that most and families meet their needs, exercise their talents -" an opportunity to contribute community. Such partici- 5 a special significance in our we believe that it is a by which we join in carrying C I's creative activity. members of society have a special to the poor and vulnerable. Scriptures and Church teach- learn that the justice of a soci- , its treatment of the poor. that was the sign of God's with Israel was measured by poor and unprotected - the he orphan and the stranger- The kingdom that Jesus in His word and ministry no one. Israel's history and in the poor area gents s transforming power. "The the Lord is upon me, there- anointed me. He has sent glad tidings to the poor" This was Jesus' first public takes the side of those d. In the Last Judgment, so dramatically described in St. Matthew's gospel, we are told that we will be judged according to how we respond to the hungry, the thirsty, the naked, the stranger. As followers of Christ, we are challenged to make a fundamental "option for the poor"- to speak for the voiceless, to defend thedefenseless, to assess lifestyles, policies and social insti- tutions in terms of their impact on the poor. This "option for the poor" does not mean pitting one group against another but, rather, strengthening the whole community by assisting those who are most vulnerable. As Christians, we are called to respond to the needs of all our brothers and sisters, but those with the greatest need require the greatest response. 5. Human rights are the minimum con- ditions for life in community. In Catholic teaching, human rights include not only civil and political rights but also eco- nomic rights. As Pope John XXIII declared, "all people have a right to life, food, clothing, shelter, rest, medical care, education and employment." This means that when people are without a chance to earn a living, and must go hungry and homeless, they are being denied basic rights. Society must ensure that these rights are protected. In this way, we will ensure that the minimum conditions of economic justice are met for all our sisters and brothers. 6. Society as a whole, acting through public and private institutions, has the moral responsibility to enhance human dignity and protect human rights. In addition to the clear responsibility of private institutions, government has an essential responsibility in this area. This does not mean that government has the primary or exclusive role, but it does have a positive moral responsibility in safeguarding human rights and ensur- ing that the minimum conditions of hu- man dignity are met for all. In a de- mocracy, government is a means by which we can act together to protect what is important to us and to promote our common values. These six moral principles are not the only ones presented in the pastoral letter, but they give an overview of the moral vision that we are trying to share. This vision of economic life cannot exist in a vacuum; it must be translated into concrete measures. (Excerpted from "Pastoral Message, Eco- nomicJustice for All," 1986, by the U.S. Catholic Conference, with permission by Today's Parish, a national monthly maga- zine in management and ministry, Nov./ Dec. 1989, Twenty-third Publications, CT, 06355.) Present your churcll bulletin for $ I OFF each adult meal V m m mmm m mam m nmm m amm II M mmn mma I mmt m mmm tmm mmm m m n m m ~ I How to write for VIEWPOINT as a guest columnist I [ Arkansas Catholic publishes a guest columnist each week. | | To see your opinion in print, complete this form. We'll let you know | | lfyour Idea is accepted. Guest columns should be limited to a single subject | | and should not exceed 500 words, | | The main point of my column would be: | I I I I I I I I I Submit your ideas to: | I WEWPOINT I I ARKANSAS CATHOLIC P.O.BOX 7417 I I LrlTLE ROCK, AR 72217 | ,---------------____________________, : EST UR NT Advertise your restaurant here. Call Ran, Deft & Gourmet Coffee Green Mountain Plaza Little Rock, 228-9900 Mon. - Sat. 10 til 6 All Major Cards Accepted Charles & Theresa Sawa~kt, attending Christ the King Parish STEAK HOUSE AND Aaron Ross, Owner RED COAT TAVERN "Serving the best prime- rib for over 16 years..." 3 blocks west of NLR Holiday Inn. Open 5:30 - 10:00 pmMonday - Thursday 5:30- 10:30 pm Friday & Saturday ALL MAJOR, CREDIT CARDS ACCEFFED i [] After Mass Treat the Family to a Little Rock's Best EASON C A F E Kept Secret...Locatecl In the Hilton Inn SUNDAY B Served from 1 1 AM to 2 FM each Sunday Children under 12...*5.5 Senior Citizens... *8. RUNCH BUFFET Try our FRIDAY NIGHT SEAFOOD BUFFET,.,rg. [ Sented 5 PM IOPM ( ReducM Pdc~ for seniors & children ) ~25 So. University Ave., Little Rock 664.-5020 Major Credit Cards Accepted m