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News Archives socially responsible investing - Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation - Page 2

Land Grabs in Africa Leave Communities Impoverished April 5th, 2012

The problem of land grabbing in Africa and Asia by investment firms and multinational corporations is a serious and growing problem. Governments make deals with large multinational companies while thousands of poor farmers are left with inadequate compensation, low wages, polluted water and exposure to toxic agricultural chemicals that cause health problems.

While problems with land grabs abound, SOCFIN Agriculture. Co. is a particularly egregious company. Owned by French billionaire Vincent Bollore, SOCFINAF Group owns and operates plantations of rubber, oil palm and coffee in Indonesia, Cambodia, Kenya, Cameroon, Nigeria, Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast) and Liberia. SOCFIN recently has secured 6,500 hectares of farmland for rubber/palm oil production in Sierra Leone.

The Oakland Institute, a California-based think-tank, has detailed a pattern of coercion, lack of consultation, and failure to fairly compensate Sierra Leonean landowners who have been pressured into ceding their land to the corporate giant. Watch this video on SOCFIN’s Sierra Leone’s operations:

Click here to read more »

Reflections from a Recent Trip to Asia February 14th, 2012

Seamus Finn, OMI reflects on his experiences and observations during a recent trip to Asia and the implications for the Oblate work with corporations. He looks at questions raised by the realities of life experienced by ordinary people, from Bangladeshi tea plantation and garment workers, to Burmese refugees in Thailand, and Cambodians dealing with the long-term impacts of land mines.

Read Fr. Finn’s latest blog on Huffington Post…


Updates on Events and Resources from the JPIC Commission Office in Rome January 26th, 2012

The following is a list of useful upcoming JPIC events and resources:

A course on Catholic Social Teaching (in Spanish): A comprehensive written course on Catholic Social Teaching, prepared for University students, was written and published in Latin America. It can be downloaded at:

JPIC Promoter’s Formation Course in the USA: An intensive week-long seminar for JPIC Congregation promoters takes place at Saint Mary’s Notre Dame, Indiana from June 3-10. The brochure is due out in February. For more information, go to

Click here to read more »

Responsible Purchasing and Investing: A Catholic Priority January 12th, 2012

From buying toothpaste to managing a portfolio – Catholics across the country are taking action to avoid buying from or investing in companies that fail to respect human dignity.

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.”

Read more in the article, Companies called to be Responsible by Amy Kotlarz, which appeared in the Catholic Courier on January 3rd, 2012.

Catholics and Faith-Consistent Investing January 8th, 2012

Learn about the possibilities available to help individuals develop a “faith-consistent” stock portfolio. In an article in Our Sunday Visitor, titled Investing with a clear conscience: Catholics don’t have to sacrifice big financial returns to invest in line with their ideals, Scott Alessi interviews Fr. Seamus Finn, OMI and others about the importance of active, faith-consistent investing.

“Church teaching clearly emphasizes the importance of placing one’s faith above financial gain. The Catechism of the Catholic Church states that economic success should never come at the expense of human dignity and that “a theory that makes profit the exclusive norm and ultimate end of economic activity is morally unacceptable” (No. 2424).”

Read the article…


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