In an address to the Centesimus Annus – Pro Pontifice Foundation, Pope Francis said that developing a more just and equitable society, and protecting the freedom and dignity of people, is at the heart of the mission to implement teaching social of the Church.
By Christopher Wells
Pope Francis addressed the members of the Institution Centesimus Annus – Pro Pontifice on Saturday, as they concluded their 2021 International Convention on “Solidarity, cooperation and responsibility: the antidotes to fight against injustices, inequalities and exclusions ”.
In his remarks, the Holy Father expressed his appreciation for the work of the Foundation, noting that the response to the injustice and exploitation that we see in the world must lie not only in condemnation, but in “the active promotion of the good ”.
Find new development models
The Foundation’s commitment to study and research new models of economic and social development, inspired by Catholic social teaching, “is important and greatly needed,” he said. “In a soil contaminated by the predominance of finance, we must sow many small seeds that can bear fruit in a fair and beneficial, humane and people-centered economy. “
The concepts of solidarity, cooperation and responsibility – central to the conference – are “the three pillars of the Church’s social teaching,” Pope Francis said. He explained that the Church’s social doctrine is based on the interaction between people and is oriented towards the common good, as opposed to both individualistic and collectivist models.
Rooted in the word of God
Catholic social teaching, he insisted, “is founded on the world of God and seeks to promote integral human development on the basis of our faith in God who became man”. For this reason, he said, “it must be practiced, cherished and developed”, because “it is a treasure of the tradition of the Church!
The study of this teaching, he continued, led the Centesimus Annus Foundation “to fight against the forms of inequality which particularly strike the most fragile, and to work for the promotion of a real and effective fraternity” .
Solidarity, cooperation, responsibility
He added that the three words at the center of the Foundation’s discussions “recall the mystery of God himself, who, as a Trinity, a communion of persons, inspires us to find our fulfillment in a generous openness. to others (solidarity), through collaboration with the others (cooperation) and through engagement to others (responsibility).”
Pope Francis explained that the mission of implementing the Church’s social teaching commits us to work for the development of a more just and equitable society, but also to defend and safeguard the dignity and freedom of each person. human person.
We are not alone
“Dear friends,” said the Pope, “in promoting these values and this way of life, we often find ourselves against the grain, but always remember that we are not alone. God has come near to us.
He said that as Christians we are called to work with all who work for the common good. “We can be ‘all brothers and sisters’,” he said, alluding to his encyclical Fratelli tutti, “and therefore we can and must think and work as ‘brothers and sisters all’.”
A dream that can come true
Although the dream of a fairer and more equitable world may seem unrealizable, Pope Francis said: “we prefer to believe that it is a dream that can come true, for it is the dream of the Triune God”.
And he encouraged the members of the Foundation to “continue resolutely” on their way, because the good they do “for every person on earth brings joy to the heart of God in heaven”.