The collapse of the Communist system in so many countries certainly removes an obstacle to facing these problems in an appropriate and realistic way, but it is not enough to bring about their solution. Even on the eve of the third Millennium she continues to be "a sign and safeguard of the transcendence of the human person",112 as indeed she has always sought to be from the beginning of her existence, walking together with man through history. 20. Such a society is not directed against the market, but demands that the market be appropriately controlled by the forces of society and by the State, so as to guarantee that the basic needs of the whole of society are satisfied. R. Mary Hayden Lemmons. Then there are the other social forces and ideological movements which oppose Marxism by setting up systems of "national security", aimed at controlling the whole of society in a systematic way, in order to make Marxist infiltration impossible. The fall of the Soviet Union was the major economic backdrop of Centesimus annus. Her sole purpose has been care and responsibility for man, who has been entrusted to her by Christ himself: for this man, whom, as the Second Vatican Council recalls, is the only creature on earth which God willed for its own sake, and for which God has his plan, that is, a share in eternal salvation. Yet he does not uncritically endorse capitalism: “We have seen that it is unacceptable to say that the defeat of so-called “Real Socialism” leaves capitalism as the only model of economic organization. Important virtues are involved in this process, such as diligence, industriousness, prudence in undertaking reasonable risks, reliability and fidelity in interpersonal relationships, as well as courage in carrying out decisions which are difficult and painful but necessary, both for the overall working of a business and in meeting possible set-backs. Fondazione Centesimus Annus pro Pontifice - Fondazione per lo studio e la diffusione della dottrinasociale della Chiesa. The encyclical Centesimus Annus was written in 1991 by Pope John Paul II on the one hundredth anniversary of Rerum Novarum. Different cultures are basically different ways of facing the question of the meaning of personal existence. With time, such distortions of political conduct create distrust and apathy, with a subsequent decline in the political participation and civic spirit of the general population, which feels abused and disillusioned. Those who are convinced that they know the truth and firmly adhere to it are considered unreliable from a democratic point of view, since they do not accept that truth is determined by the majority, or that it is subject to variation according to different political trends. Indeed, it is through the free gift of self that man truly finds himself.81 This gift is made possible by the human person's essential "capacity for transcendence". Thus a great deal of educational and cultural work is urgently needed, including the education of consumers in the responsible use of their power of choice, the formation of a strong sense of responsibility among producers and among people in the mass media in particular, as well as the necessary intervention by public authorities. In our time, in particular, there exists another form of ownership which is becoming no less important than land: the possession of know-how, technology and skill. 1:57. Nevertheless, these mechanisms carry the risk of an "idolatry" of the market, an idolatry which ignores the existence of goods which by their nature are not and cannot be mere commodities. Created in the image of God, the human person possesses an inherent and inalienable dignity, which is never to be violated. Reflections on Centesimus Annus and the Juridical/Political Parameters of Vocation and Feminism. Thus the prevailing political theory of the time sought to promote total economic freedom by appropriate laws, or, conversely, by a deliberate lack of any intervention. Rerum novarum criticizes two social and economic systems: socialism and liberalism. It is the task of the State to provide for the defence and preservation of common goods such as the natural and human environments, which cannot be safeguarded simply by market forces. It is also necessary to help these needy people to acquire expertise, to enter the circle of exchange, and to develop their skills in order to make the best use of their capacities and resources. This happens in consumerism, when people are ensnared in a web of false and superficial gratifications rather than being helped to experience their personhood in an authentic and concrete way. A society in which this right is systematically denied, in which economic policies do not allow workers to reach satisfactory levels of employment, cannot be justified from an ethical point of view, nor can that society attain social peace.88 Just as the person fully realizes himself in the free gift of self, so too ownership morally justifies itself in the creation, at the proper time and in the proper way, of opportunities for work and human growth for all. When man does not recognize in himself and in others the value and grandeur of the human person, he effectively deprives himself of the possibility of benefitting from his humanity and of entering into that relationship of solidarity and communion with others for which God created him. Otherwise, there would be a violation of that law of justice which ordains that every person should receive his due. Although they certainly reached their climax in 1989 in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe, they embrace a longer period of time and a wider geographical area. “Centesimus Annus...is a watershed event in modern religious thought about freedom…In its concerns for workers’ rights, for families and voluntary associations, and for religious liberty, and in its endorsement of democracy, the Pope develops classic themes of papal teaching about the modern economy and the modern state. The opening section, in which the right to private property is reaffirmed, is devoted to socialism. In a certain sense, it was a struggle born of prayer, and it would have been unthinkable without immense trust in God, the Lord of history, who carries the human heart in his hands. Often, the vast majority of people identified themselves with this kind of affirmation, and this led to a search for forms of protest and for political solutions more respectful of the dignity of the person. At the height of this clash, when people finally began to realize fully the very grave injustice of social realities in many places and the danger of a revolution fanned by ideals which were then called "socialist", Pope Leo XIII intervened with a document which dealt in a systematic way with the "condition of the workers". In all this, one notes first the poverty or narrowness of man's outlook, motivated as he is by a desire to possess things rather than to relate them to the truth, and lacking that disinterested, unselfish and aesthetic attitude that is born of wonder in the presence of being and of the beauty which enables one to see in visible things the message of the invisible God who created them. And this war was not simply expected and prepared for, but was actually fought with enormous bloodshed in various parts of the world. (Centesimus Annus, pargraph 43). Cardinal Parolin situated the theme for this year’s Centesimus Annus conference within the context of Pope Francis’s appeal during the extraordinary moment of prayer on 27 March. The Church promotes those aspects of human behaviour which favour a true culture of peace, as opposed to models in which the individual is lost in the crowd, in which the role of his initiative and freedom is neglected, and in which his greatness is posited in the arts of conflict and war. Moving beyond all that was short-lived in these attempts, present circumstances are leading to a reaffirmation of the positive value of an authentic theology of integral human liberation.58 Considered from this point of view, the events of 1989 are proving to be important also for the countries of the Third World, which are searching for their own path to development, just as they were important for the countries of Central and Eastern Europe. Group of the Foundation “Centesimus Annus” to formulate a series of questions. The culture and praxis of totalitarianism also involve a rejection of the Church. The fall of Marxism has naturally had a great impact on the division of the planet into worlds which are closed to one another and in jealous competition. At the heart of every culture lies the attitude man takes to the greatest mystery: the mystery of God. 21. The remedy would prove worse than the sickness. The Gospel parable of the weeds among the wheat (cf. It came on the heels of the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the Soviet Union. The Church has gradually developed that doctrine in a systematic way, above all in the century that has followed the date we are commemorating, precisely because the horizon of the Church's whole wealth of doctrine is man in his concrete reality as sinful and righteous. 5. For many years there has been in Europe and the world a situation of non-war rather than genuine peace. The foundation of the right to private initiative and ownership is to be found in this activity. The Encyclical Laborem exercens moreover clearly recognized the positive role of conflict when it takes the form of a "struggle for social justice";41 Quadragesimo anno had already stated that "if the class struggle abstains from enmities and mutual hatred, it gradually changes into an honest discussion of differences founded on a desire for justice".42. In Centesimus Annus he reminds us that there are “collective and qualitative human needs which cannot be satisfied by market mechanisms.” Far from uncritically promoting the free market, he argues for a strong juridical framework to ensure the rights of all people. May the memory of those terrible events guide the actions of everyone, particularly the leaders of nations in our own time, when other forms of injustice are fuelling new hatreds and when new ideologies which exalt violence are appearing on the horizon. Indeed, in a way, for many peoples, especially those which had suffered most during the war, it openly contradicted these goals. What received attention was the spread of Communist totalitarianism over more than half of Europe and over other parts of the world. 3. But profitability is not the only indicator of a firm's condition. 16. Mt 25:31) with the establishment of a new heaven and a new earth (cf. No, never again war, which destroys the lives of innocent people, teaches how to kill, throws into upheaval even the lives of those who do the killing and leaves behind a trail of resentment and hatred, thus making it all the more difficult to find a just solution of the very problems which provoked the war. In Third World contexts, certain objectives stated by Rerum novarum remain valid, and, in some cases, still constitute a goal yet to be reached, if man's work and his very being are not to be reduced to the level of a mere commodity. 42. It has further highlighted the reality of interdependence among peoples, as well as the fact that human work, by its nature, is meant to unite peoples, not divide them. Centesimus Annus (“The Hundredth Year”), Pope John Paul II, 1991 #58. Decisive sectors of the economy still remain de facto in the hands of large foreign companies which are unwilling to commit themselves to the long-term development of the host country. Centesimus Annus includes a chapter-long reflection on the death of communistic socialism. This concept of relations between employers and employees, purely pragmatic and inspired by a thorough-going individualism, is severely censured in the Encyclical as contrary to the twofold nature of work as a personal and necessary reality. And referring to the "contract" aimed at putting into effect "labour relations" of this sort, he affirms with greater precision, that "in all agreements between employers and workers there is always the condition expressed or understood" that proper rest be allowed, proportionate to "the wear and tear of one's strength". On the basis of a hard, lived experience of work and of oppression, it was they who recovered and, in a sense, rediscovered the content and principles of the Church's social doctrine. But for this very reason it is necessary for peoples in the process of reforming their systems to give democracy an authentic and solid foundation through the explicit recognition of those rights.96 Among the most important of these rights, mention must be made of the right to life, an integral part of which is the right of the child to develop in the mother's womb from the moment of conception; the right to live in a united family and in a moral environment conducive to the growth of the child's personality; the right to develop one's intelligence and freedom in seeking and knowing the truth; the right to share in the work which makes wise use of the earth's material resources, and to derive from that work the means to support oneself and one's dependents; and the right freely to establish a family, to have and to rear children through the responsible exercise of one's sexuality. Indeed, besides the earth, man's principal resource is man himself. It goes without saying that part of the responsibility of Pastors is to give careful consideration to current events in order to discern the new requirements of evangelization. As such, it proclaims God and his mystery of salvation in Christ to every human being, and for that very reason reveals man to himself. The Church values the democratic system inasmuch as it ensures the participation of citizens in making political choices, guarantees to the governed the possibility both of electing and holding accountable those who govern them, and of replacing them through peaceful means when appropriate.93 Thus she cannot encourage the formation of narrow ruling groups which usurp the power of the State for individual interests or for ideological ends. Forbes 147 (15 April 1991) 92-93. This papal letter to the entire Church gave John Paul the opportunity to offer his reflections on capitalism in the period after the collapse of the Soviet Union. These reforms were carried out in part by States, but in the struggle to achieve them the role of the workers' movement was an important one. A person who produces something other than for his own use generally does so in order that others may use it after they have paid a just price, mutually agreed upon through free bargaining. The "new things" to which the Pope devoted his attention were anything but positive. The denial of God deprives the person of his foundation, and consequently leads to a reorganization of the social order without reference to the person's dignity and responsibility. The exercise and development of this right includes the right to discover and freely to accept Jesus Christ, who is man's true good.64, IV. This is, in fact, a responsibility which falls not only to the citizens of the countries in question, but to all Christians and people of good will. The events of 1989 took place principally in the countries of Eastern and Central Europe. In so doing he utilizes the things of this world as objects and instruments and makes them his own. Given in Rome, at Saint Peter's, on 1 May, the Memorial of Saint Joseph the Worker, in the year 1991, the thirteenth of my Pontificate. Furthermore, society and the State must ensure wage levels adequate for the maintenance of the worker and his family, including a certain amount for savings. In the third Millennium too, the Church will be faithful in making man's way her own, knowing that she does not walk alone, but with Christ her Lord. The Church has constantly repeated that the person and society need not only material goods but spiritual and religious values as well. Pope Benedict XV and his Successors clearly understood this danger.104 I myself, on the occasion of the recent tragic war in the Persian Gulf, repeated the cry: "Never again war!". The Church has no models to present; models that are real and truly effective can only arise within the framework of different historical situations, through the efforts of all those who responsibly confront concrete problems in all their social, economic, political and cultural aspects, as these interact with one another.84 For such a task the Church offers her social teaching as an indispensable and ideal orientation, a teaching which, as already mentioned, recognizes the positive value of the market and of enterprise, but which at the same time points out that these need to be oriented towards the common good. In addition, the Church's social teaching has an important interdisciplinary dimension. Finally, "humane" working hours and adequate free-time need to be guaranteed, as well as the right to express one's own personality at the work-place without suffering any affront to one's conscience or personal dignity. For this reason, another name for peace is development.105 Just as there is a collective responsibility for avoiding war, so too there is a collective responsibility for promoting development. Here we find the first reflection for our times as suggested by the Encyclical. In other cases there began a difficult but productive transition towards more participatory and more just political structures. It is on this level that the Church's specific and decisive contribution to true culture is to be found. In this regard, humanity today must be conscious of its duties and obligations towards future generations. If we keep in mind what history tells us about the practices permitted or at least not excluded by law regarding the way in which workers were employed, without any guarantees as to working hours or the hygienic conditions of the work-place, or even regarding the age and sex of apprentices, we can appreciate the Pope's severe statement: "It is neither just nor human so to grind men down with excessive labour as to stupefy their minds and wear out their bodies". Stronger nations must offer weaker ones opportunities for taking their place in international life, and the latter must learn how to use these opportunities by making the necessary efforts and sacrifices and by ensuring political and economic stability, the certainty of better prospects for the future, the improvement of workers' skills, and the training of competent business leaders who are conscious of their responsibilities.74. If there is no transcendent truth, in obedience to which man achieves his full identity, then there is no sure principle for guaranteeing just relations between people. This should not however lead us to think that Pope Leo expected the State to solve every social problem. However, excesses and abuses, especially in recent years, have provoked very harsh criticisms of the Welfare State, dubbed the "Social Assistance State". While noting this process with satisfaction, nevertheless one cannot ignore the fact that the overall balance of the various policies of aid for development has not always been positive. Some of these resulted from militarism and exaggerated nationalism, and from related forms of totalitarianism; some derived from the class struggle; still others were civil wars or wars of an ideological nature. Certain demands which arise within society are sometimes not examined in accordance with criteria of justice and morality, but rather on the basis of the electoral or financial power of the groups promoting them. One thinks of the condition of refugees, immigrants, the elderly, the sick, and all those in circumstances which call for assistance, such as drug abusers: all these people can be helped effectively only by those who offer them genuine fraternal support, in addition to the necessary care. JOHN PAUL II HOLY FATHER « CENTESIMUS ANNUS » ENCYCLICAL LETTER TO HIS VENERABLE BROTHER BISHOPS IN THE EPISCOPATE THE PRIESTS AND DEACONS FAMILIES OF MEN AND WOMEN RELIGIOUS ALL THE CHRISTIAN FAITHFUL AND TO ALL MEN AND WOMEN OF GOOD WILL ON THE HUNDRETH ANNIVERSARY OF RERUM NOVARUM. Here we mean the family founded on marriage, in which the mutual gift of self by husband and wife creates an environment in which children can be born and develop their potentialities, become aware of their dignity and prepare to face their unique and individual destiny. It is not merely a matter of "giving from one's surplus", but of helping entire peoples which are presently excluded or marginalized to enter into the sphere of economic and human development. It can happen, however, that when a family does decide to live up fully to its vocation, it finds itself without the necessary support from the State and without sufficient resources. In the crisis of Marxism, the natural dictates of the consciences of workers have re-emerged in a demand for justice and a recognition of the dignity of work, in conformity with the social doctrine of the Church.57 The worker movement is part of a more general movement among workers and other people of good will for the liberation of the human person and for the affirmation of human rights. Given this situation, many think that Marxism can offer a sort of short-cut for building up the nation and the State; thus many variants of socialism emerge with specific national characteristics. "The Church and Capitalism." coming from it as a group or from any of its individual members – and offer a contribution to a debate more serene than party Thus it is possible to meet these new situations without degrading the human person's transcendent dignity, either in oneself or in one's adversaries, and to direct those situations towards just solutions. Today more than ever, the Church is aware that her social message will gain credibility more immediately from the witness of actions than as a result of its internal logic and consistency. Today, in many parts of the world, similar processes of economic, social and political transformation are creating the same evils. This option is not limited to material poverty, since it is well known that there are many other forms of poverty, especially in modern societyânot only economic but cultural and spiritual poverty as well. Allured by the dazzle of an opulence which is beyond their reach, and at the same time driven by necessity, these people crowd the cities of the Third World where they are often without cultural roots, and where they are exposed to situations of violent uncertainty, without the possibility of becoming integrated. The Christian upholds freedom and serves it, constantly offering to others the truth which he has known (cf. Jn 21:15-17), and to "bind and loose" on earth for the Kingdom of Heaven (cf. The debates aim at elaborating materials about the application of the … Besides being morally inadmissible, this will eventually have negative repercussions on the firm's economic efficiency. The Encyclical Rerum novarum itself is a significant sign of this. Socialism considers the individual person simply as an element, a molecule within the social organism, so that the good of the individual is completely subordinated to the functioning of the socio-economic mechanism. In the course of the 80s, certain dictatorial and oppressive regimes fell one by one in some countries of Latin America and also of Africa and Asia. Centesimus Annus departs from that pattern, in part because socialism has nearly disappeared since 1989. Man remains above all a being who seeks the truth and strives to live in that truth, deepening his understanding of it through a dialogue which involves past and future generations.102. The treasure is the great outpouring of the Church's Tradition, which contains "what is old" â received and passed on from the very beginning â and which enables us to interpret the "new things" in the midst of which the life of the Church and the world unfolds. A person who is deprived of something he can call "his own", and of the possibility of earning a living through his own initiative, comes to depend on the social machine and on those who control it. In singling out new needs and new means to meet them, one must be guided by a comprehensive picture of man which respects all the dimensions of his being and which subordinates his material and instinctive dimensions to his interior and spiritual ones. To call for an existence which is qualitatively more satisfying is of itself legitimate, but one cannot fail to draw attention to the new responsibilities and dangers connected with this phase of history. The social order will be all the more stable, the more it takes this fact into account and does not place in opposition personal interest and the interests of society as a whole, but rather seeks ways to bring them into fruitful harmony. Since it is not an ideology, the Christian faith does not presume to imprison changing socio-political realities in a rigid schema, and it recognizes that human life is realized in history in conditions that are diverse and imperfect. When it becomes autonomous, when man is seen more as a producer or consumer of goods than as a subject who produces and consumes in order to live, then economic freedom loses its necessary relationship to the human person and ends up by alienating and oppressing him.80. With the intention of shedding light on the conflict which had arisen between capital and labour, Pope Leo XIII affirmed the fundamental rights of workers. It is urgent therefore to promote not only family policies, but also those social policies which have the family as their principle object, policies which assist the family by providing adequate resources and efficient means of support, both for bringing up children and for looking after the elderly, so as to avoid distancing the latter from the family unit and in order to strengthen relations between generations.101, Apart from the family, other intermediate communities exercise primary functions and give life to specific networks of solidarity. John Paul II stresses the role of culture in integral human development. I am happy to welcome you to this meeting, with which you wish to renew the sentiments of affection that bind you to the Successor of Peter, while you also show your effective solidarity with the needs of the Church. They individuals or nations â need to be found in this sense the family is the principle that debts be! 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