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Responsible Purchasing and Investing: A Catholic Priority January 12th, 2012
In the 2009 encyclical Caritas in Veritate, Pope Benedict XVI wrote that the economy should be at the service of people, and not the other way around.
“Profit is useful if it serves as a means towards an end that provides a sense both of how to produce it and how to make good use of it,” the pope wrote. “Once profit becomes the exclusive goal, if it is produced by improper means and without the common good as its ultimate end, it risks destroying wealth and creating poverty.”
Going further, Fr. Seamus Finn, OMI has argued that faith-based investors should demand accountability from the companies they invested with or they should divest stock in companies engaged in morally objectionable practices. “With ownership comes responsibility and rights.”
Catholics are looking for guidance and a larger voice from the Vatican on ethical principles for the world of finance and the environment, according to a number of participants attending a Vatican meeting on social justice in a globalized world.
Some 200 people involved in social justice issues for the church gathered May 16-18 for an international conference sponsored by the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace. The meeting celebrated the 50th anniversary of Blessed Pope John XXIII’s social encyclical, “Mater et Magistra.” It was designed to find ways to use the church’s social teaching, including Pope Benedict XVI’s 2009 social encyclical “Caritas in Veritate,” to bring greater justice to a globalized world.
The Oblates were represented by Fr. Seamus Finn, OMI, US JPIC Director. Fr. Seamus, a leader in the faith-responsible investment movement said, “Individual Catholics are looking for guidance” in how to connect their concern for corporate responsibility and the environment to their faith and Christian spirituality.
Christians cannot be motivated solely by utilitarian arguments that natural resources should be protected so that they will not run out or poison future generations, he said, adding that “Environmental and corporate ethics needs to be based on the Christian sense of stewardship, of care, respect and appreciation for God’s gifts.”
Lenten Carbon Fast 2010 February 10th, 2010
“The environment is God’s gift to everyone, and in our use of it we have a responsibility towards the poor, towards future generations and towards humanity as a whole.” — Pope Benedict, Encyclical Caritas in Veritate
A Lenten Carbon Fast calendar is available from the Environmental Outreach Committee of the Archdiocese of Washington. Please use it as part of your Lenten discipline.
The calendar says: “As Catholic Christians we have a responsibility to be wise stewards of God’s Creation and each of us must decide how we can improve our stewardship to safeguard God’s creation now and for future generations. The Archdiocese environmental Outreach Committee suggests the following list of 40 carbon fasting actions everyone can consider as a part of your Lenten preparation for the Easter season. Each of these actions will reduce our production of climate change pollution and help to preserve God’s great gift of Creation.”