Paul Ryan: my Catholic faith helped shape budget plan


House Budget Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) says his Catholic faith helped shape the Republican budget plan by stressing local control and concern for the poor, according to an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network released Tuesday.

“A person’s faith is central to how they conduct themselves, in public and in private, so to me, using my Catholic faith, we call it the social magisterium, which is: How do you apply the doctrine of your teaching into your everyday life as a lay person?” he said.

Ryan said that the principle of subsidiarity — a notion, rooted in Catholic social teaching, that decisions are best made at most local level available — guided his thinking on budget planning.

“To me, the principle of subsidiarity, which is really federalism, meaning government closest to the people governs best, having a civil society … where we, through our civic organizations, through our churches, through our charities, through all of our different groups where we interact with people as a community, that’s how we advance the common good,” Ryan said.

The Wisconsin Republican said that he also drew on Catholic teachings regarding concern for the poor, and his interpretation of how that translated into government policy.

“[T]he preferential option for the poor, which is one of the primary tenets of Catholic social teaching, means don’t keep people poor, don’t make people dependent on government so that they stay stuck at their station in life, help people get out of poverty out onto life of independence,” said Ryan.

In 2011, after Ryan’s last budget proposal, the president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Timothy Dolan, commended the Republican’s “continued attention” to Catholic social justice “in the current delicate budget considerations in Congress.”

“The budget is not just about numbers,” Dolan wrote in a letter in May 2011. “It reflects the very values of our nation. As many religious leaders have commented, budgets are moral statements.”

Read more – including some dissenting opinion on Ryan’s views on subsidiarity.

And for more on the topic, there’s an interesting take at the Catholic Moral Theology website.
Comments closed.


  1. Interesting take at the Catholic Moral Theology blog? I suspect, like it or not, that Meghan Clark, with all due respect to Paul Ryan, may know a wee bit more than he about Catholic social teaching and the principle of subsidiarity.

    His budget, at least inasmuch as I can see and understand (and although I have studied Catholic moral theology, I would not claim to be an expert by any stretch) it, has very little to do with Catholic teaching.

    The problem really comes home to roost when we filter Catholic social teaching through the lens of our own culture. What we really need to do is reframe what is understood through the lens of the teaching itself. There is a universality to the teachings of our Church that cannot solely be understood filtered through contextual lenses. The teaching is the lens! No matter what the culture. That is why the teaching informs the culture and not vice versa.

    Wouldn’t that be why we can’t just, to use the arguments of others, on other topics, simply “update” the church due to cultural trends on other issues?

    In the Gospel of Mark we are reminded that the sabbath is made for the people, not the people for the sabbath. That might be a good Catholic universal lens to also apply to teachings as well. The teaching, like the sabbath itself, is a place for our knowledge, rest and ultimate wisdom. Not a cudgel to bludgeon us with!

  2. Henry Karlson says:

    Preferential option for the poor doesn’t mean we prefer to take from the poor.

    But I am trying to figure out which Ryan shows less knowledge about: CST or federalism. His definition of federalism is hilarious. But I think he is worse off with CST. And to say “well, he is trying” and giving him the benefit of the doubt — well, that’s nice; maybe we can follow through with this and give benefit of the doubt to people of all political parties in this fashion if they show they are trying! Oh wait….

  3. Well, considering, (and especially if Obamacare doesn’t get overturned), we are on the brink of communism in this country, I don’t think it serves any of us to be crossing t’s and dotting i’s on an excellent and well intentioned alternative to the “non budget”, for selfish re election purposes, our current government has been unable to provide.

    Like Santroum, Paul Ryan is a very good Catholic man, with the best interest of the people, despite the fact he isn’t a “moral theologidan.” Sometimes the “heart” and seeing the world through faith is simply enough.

  4. ron chandonia says:

    Fran’s caution here is right on target. So long as we insist on interpreting (or, really, just “using”) the terminology of Catholic social teaching to bolster our pre-existing cultural and/or partisan viewpoints, the teaching is unhelpful. Rather than fostering a much-needed discussion of how public policy could best support genuine empowerment of the poor–the real meaning of subsidiarity–statements like Ryan’s lead only to new shouting matches. I can’t say that the blame rests with Ryan or his critics. Rather, I’d say we Catholics need to pay less attention to the partisan voices on the left and the right and instead listen more closely to thinkers like Meghan Clark.

  5. Henry Karlson says:

    We are not on the cusp of communism, and “Obamacare” at best is a heightened capitalism, encouraging the buying and selling of insurance. Sorry, the way people talk about things shows why the Ryans of the world eat up the poor.

  6. Henry O’care is the biggest powergrab in American History. Let’s just agree to disagree and save the bandwitdh. :)

  7. Henry Karlson says:

    When people talk about “biggest powergrab in American history,” with health care reform as being a “powergrab,” they show no understanding of American history. However, even if it were, it would not mean it is a wrong thing to do — the Church promotes the principle behind health care reform, but rejected parts of what Obama did with it. The principle is sound and to call it communist is to show no understanding of moral reasoning in regards to healthcare.

    Nonetheless, a history lesson would be able to show all kinds of powergrabs in American history, the kind which make health care reform look minor; here are four:

    1. The American Revolution
    2. The Trail of Tears and all that was done to Native Americans throughout US history
    3. Manifest Destiny and all that was used to expand the US
    4. The creation and use of the atomic bomb

  8. Why am I skeptical? Last year it was the books of Ayn Rand, now it is Papal encyclicals.

  9. Klaire:
    “We are on the brink of communism in this country… .”

    You may want to consider this.

    The communist ideal, “each gives according to his capacity and receives according to his needs,” has been part of our Catholic tradition since the earliest centuries. It is lived in the monastic tradition. In fact, Thomas Merton said that it is the only place where the Marxist ideal, can be realized.

  10. Ryan Ellis says:

    The point is that the Second Vatican Council made clear the rights of the laity in this case. It’s the role of the magisterium to lay out basic principles of Catholic social teaching. It’s the role of the expert laity (and Paul Ryan certainly qualifies) to use their prudential judgment in implementing these principles in practice.

    Those who would deny the laity these rights are fighting against the express teaching of the Second Vatican Council and many popes.

    Of course, laity can certainly disagree with each other over how to apply the principles. But they cannot sit in moral judgment of one valid prudential choice over another, if they both comport with Catholic social teaching principles.

    This is true for both the goose and the gander. Even though I very much support the Ryan budget, I also must acknowledge that a tax-and-spend budget which allocates money to welfare programs also seeks to implement Catholic social teaching, even though I firmly believe this is prudentially erroneous.

    Left wing Baby Boomers on this blog must give the same respect to Paul Ryan.

  11. I agree 100% HMS. There has never been any secret that monastic life is “communistic.” But here’s the thing: monastic life is all by choice.

    I’m the first to agree that it works great in a monastic environment of the devoutly religioius. That same model, in the world, a “godless” one for the most part at that, and well, “not so much.”

  12. Henry Karlson says:

    The principles have to be followed, however. Ryan is _not_ an expert on them, indeed, he contradicts them a great deal. The fact that he can’t even define federalism right shows he has a long way before qualifying as an expert. He is an Ayn Rand advocate which is Satanic individualism at the expense of the poor, and this lens influences his reading all over the place. And indeed, if we look closely, he fails to even understand subsidiarity — the fact of the matter is, it is only given a half value, as basically an impelling force toward individualism by the so-called American right. That is not what subsidiarity implies: it is about the proper level of engagement, with the recognition that often LARGER entities (states, federal government) are often needed to deal with problems that smaller entities (individuals, states) cannot. The way some use “subsidiarity” to deny solutions demonstrates the problem and ignorance of solidarity and other principles of CST which have to go along with subsidiarity.

    Imagine if people took Ryan’s talk about the poor and made it about the rich, that all the things they are facing which they don’t like are due to their own bad choices. Ever hear that one? I didn’t think so.

  13. What is the principle behind Obamacare again? The reason Hillarycare failed, the reason universal healthcare fails is because it requires 100% participation in order to FUND IT. There is no funding mechanism in this 2000 page undigested nightmare; the so called “penalty” for opting out is not collectible. The buying and selling of insurance must be COMPELLED in order to FINANCE IT.

  14. In case it’s not clear, the buying and selling of OBAMA INSURANCE must be compelled…

  15. deacon john m. bresnahan says:

    There is a lot of good reasoned thought here in the story and in the comments on subsidiarity.
    Two other aspects should be factored in that were not mentioned–the right of Catholics to make prudential decisions in good faith in most political matters (quoting a papal document on economic issues does not automatically win an argument and “close the case” since it is easy to misapply or misunderstand some of the complicated issues at stake “). And any obvious stirring up of class warfare (becoming quite common from the Left these days with the “occupy movement” and the sometimes violent attacks on the “1%”) as well as economic jealousy, envy, and greed in order to win one’s point of view should be as condemned by Catholics as any alleged callous disregard of the poor.

  16. Henry Karlson says:

    Once again, it is not Obama insurance, it is not governmental insurance, it is the insurance industry and their insurance (with expectations put on them like, you know, no discrimination). The fact is, again, people talk about something they know nothing about – but it would be better of it were one universal health care system, which is where the GOP-created “Obamacare” fails. That’s right, it was the GOP which created this package — as a rival to Clinton!

  17. The arguements that have been posted on here are the result of the hijacking by the Catholic left of the term and meaning of “social justice.” I guess it can be best summed up by “Even if one person does better than another, we cannot have it. EVERYONE must suffer.”

  18. “To me, the principle of subsidiarity, which is really federalism, meaning government closest to the people governs best” right here in this sentence, Ryan gets it wrong. Subsidiarity envisions layers of social organizations and civil governance. Ryan presumes that the most local level governs best. But subsidiarity does not say that. The principle says that the layer MOST CAPABLE should deal with a specific concern or policy.
    Of course, if Ryan really believed local government was always the best, he would abolish the federal armed forces.

  19. Lesson learned: avoid all political discussions. A complete waste of time.

  20. Ryan Ellis says:

    Ryan is an expert in the field in which he is working (government budgets). He is using Catholic social teaching in a way that he considers prudent. This interpretation has been assented to by Cardinal Dolan in his capacity as head of the USCCB (note the letter exchange from last year).

    You are free to disagree with Ryan’s application of Catholic social teaching, but you are not allowed to begrudge him his rights as a layman, which is what you are doing. This is his sphere of action as a layman.

    Your disagreement with his budget doesn’t mean that he isn’t following Catholic social teaching–he is.

  21. Ryan Ellis says:

    As a layman, Ryan is making the prudential judgment that the lowest layer governs best in the programs he is taking on. He is not saying that the lowest layer MUST govern. So he is applying the principle in the way you say he should.

    And that is within his sphere of competence as an expert layman. It’s his call, which any of us can disagree with. But we can’t say he’s mis-applying Catholic social teaching, because he is not.

  22. It just occurred to me. There are six Catholics on the Supreme Court. Hmm! I guess they have to hide their Catholic beliefs under their judicial robes?

  23. Henry Karlson says:

    The fact that he claims to follow it doesn’t mean he is; and that he ignores much of CST, and gets it so wrong, says he is not following it. Indeed, that he is trying to fit CST into an Ayn Randian libertarian state makes one think it is easier to square the circle than to find truth in this methodology.

  24. Henry Karlson says:

    Are you saying it is impossible for a layman to get CST wrong? Sorry, what a ridiculous claim!

  25. Justice Scalia has stated a number of times that his faith has no
    influence on his role as a justice. i am sure you can find his quote with a google search, or hear him say it on a “60 Minutes” interview from few years back.

  26. “must” or “best”… whatever.
    What evidence is there that Ryan is an expert layman? This is a man who openly espouses the anti-Christian philosophy of Ayn Rand. Ayn Rand’s social and economic philosophy is a complete rejection of Catholic Social teaching.
    And what is prudential about cutting funding of survival services for the poor, and at the same time insuring tax cuts (and thus greater income) for the wealthiest 5%. Prudence would take into account social consequences and long-term effects.

  27. Rep Ryan’s open embrace of Ayn Rand, whose thought is systematically inimical to what the Church teaches, creates a profound lack of credibility on his effort to trade on his Catholic credentials, and for members of Catholic clergy to let that go without prominent qualification is at best negligent, any more than an uncritical embrace of folks like Rep Pelosi trying to trade on Catholic credentials.

  28. The Affordable Healthcare Act ( popularly known as Obamacare) is very close to a proposal developed by the very conservative Heritage Foundation , a Washington, DC “think-tank”. At the time that it was proposed, it was hailed by conservatives including Newt Gingrich, because it contained an individual mandate, requiring the purchase of health insurance from private insurance companies, rather than the “single payer plan” which would have been very much cheaper for everyone, and probably delivered better medicine also. The single-payer was deemed “socialist” by the conservatives, who just loved the Heritage Foundation plan. Romney supported a version of this plan in Massachusetts when he was governor. Because it was much cheaper and provided better medicine and included pharmaceuticals, democrats at that time were supporting the single payer.
    Once Obama was elected, democrats say that the only hope for a national health care plan that would end the denial of coverage for pre-existing conditions, allow kids under 26 on their parents’ plan, and expand coverage to many tens of millions of persons was to change their support, and go along with the private insurance option of the Heritage Foundation. Anything else would have died in filibuster in the Senate. With the change of support, the republicans fled this plan, for the sole cynical reason that they did not want Obama to get the credit for healthcare, fearing that if it passed with strong bi-partisan support, the democrats would control the house and senate for a 50 year run as they did once before.
    Congressman Ryan must think that catholics are totally stupid to think that his budget supports a living wage, health care benefits, etc. He promotes war mongering around the world, capital punishment, and all the other items that the bishops look the other way on, so long as he is anti-abortion.

  29. As soon as all of the people, who claim subsidiarity is the answer to welfare and medical needs, take care of the needs of the poor, the government can get out of the business.

  30. I wonder if Paul Ryan has ever had a formal course in Catholic Social teaching. If so, he would not be so cavalier about his use of the term subsidiarity:

    “It is a fundamental principle of social philosophy, fixed and unchangeable, that one should not withdraw from individuals and commit to the community what they can accomplish by their own enterprise and industry. So, too, it is an injustice and at the same time a grave evil and a disturbance of right order, to transfer to the larger and higher collectivity functions which can be performed and provided for by lesser and subordinate bodies.” Pope Pius XI. On Reconstructing the Social Order (1931) 79.

    Tell me if individuals can pay health costs without insurance.

    Tell me if his understanding of subsidiarity is not tied with his political philosophy of diminishing the influence of the federal government.

    In addition, has he ever heard of distributive justice?

    “Distributive justice requires that the allocation of income, wealth, and power in society be evaluated in light of its effects on persons whose basic material needs are unmet. ” U.S. Bishops. Economic Justice for All (1986) 68-71.

  31. Wow.
    Wow wow wow wow.

    Talk about confusing means and ends. Wow.

    The poor guy doesn’t have a clue. And he has real power as chair of a powerful House committee.

    Wow wow wow wow.

  32. Ryan is not an expert on government budgets, anymore than any member of the House of Representatives or Senate is an expert on most things. These folks rely on outside experts to tell them what to say and what to offer through their various committee assignments – Ryan’s budget is based on input from ALEC. Ryan like all politicians is beholden to those who give him the most money so he can stay in power.
    I don’t see the argument about Ryan following CST, which as a layman I don’t believe he is, as the real problem. I see the influence of money and the quid pro qous that come with that money as the real problem. ALEC a sponsor of Ryan is so far removed from CST that it ceases to be amusing and becomes frightening.

  33. Ryan Ellis says:

    You seem to think that spending more on the poor next year than this year violates Catholic social teaching just because the “more” isn’t high enough for you.

    He also disagrees with you about what the proper level of government is to run welfare programs, which is his and your right.

    How exactly is he failing to follow CST?

  34. Many of these comments are simply astounding to me. We finally have a guy who at least more than half way gets the real needs of the people, has the guts unlike most of the others in Congress (of both sides), to put something out there, and he gets bulldozed on “technicalities.” By those standards, Pelosi, Kerry, and most of the other abortion same sex marriage lovin’ congressional catholics are made to look like saints.

    As for the Ayn Rand stuff, I know a lot about Objectivism and Paul’s take on it. He clearly has publically stated that he is NOT an Objectionist, and only supports Rand in so far as the excess big government. I think he would be better to simply leave Ayn Rand out of the equation, but the fact that he does reference her, he clearly denounces her anti-religious side.

    And the real proof of the pudding, Ryan had absolutely NO love for anyone, let alone the poor.

  35. Maybe that’s the challenge to us as individuals? – to look at what we have and ask how we may share it with the world – and not look at what we have and say we worked hard for it, it belongs to us – save for the part I donate to salve my conscience it’s all mine – you don’t have as much? Too bad for you that you didn’t work hard enough to earn it like me.

    I’m generalizing of course – but that is the tone I detect when I read objections to the Health Legislation. I am not a fan of the current Administration – but I am certainly a fan of more equitable access to affordable healthcare.

    Maybe the more monastic way of life would suit us all a little better – can’t say it would do our eternal life any harm!

    It’s all very easy to sit in a blog combox and decry the Godlessness of the world – but what are we doing collectively – actively – out front and center, to make this a more Godly world? :)

    I don’t mean this as a criticism of any individual – but I think we are all very guilty of pointing out what’s wrong with the world, with politicians, with schools, kids – all the while doing very little to actively effect change.

  36. Correction: Intended to say “Rand” had no love for the poor.

  37. Fiergenholt says:

    All this discussion about Ayn Rand.

    –In a very prominent editorial in the Wall Street Journal, the writer commented that Ayn Rand’s philosophy of “Ethical Egoism” (perhaps better described as “Greed in Disguise”) is — in fact — the driving philosophical mandate of Capitalism ansd thus Wall Street. I have a copy of that editorial somewhere but not at my fingertips.

    –While I have not read “Atlas Shrugged” in a very long time, a deacon who is a friend of mine (and a prominent contributor to this blog) pointed out to me once that in the utopian society that Rand created in her novel, there are only mature adults: no children; no dependent elderly; no folks made dependent on others because of illness or injury or congenital deformity; no need to be charitable because no one needed charity — every citizen was naturally greedy enough to meet their own survival needs.

    And some folks on this blog insist that Paul Ryan is a disciple of Ayn Rand? How can one be a disciple of Ayn Rand and claim to follow Jesus? Matthew 6:24ff

  38. Fiergenholt says:

    Found the citation:

    David Kelley “Capitalist Heroes,” The Wall Street Journal. October 10, 2007 page A21.

  39. deacon john m. bresnahan says:

    It is one thing to advocate for more help and programs for the poor. It is a totally different thing to do what President Obama and his allies are clearly doing to gain his re-election–attack people who the Left believe are not paying their “fair share” of taxes (which study after study has shown you can’t get enough money out of just millionaires to solve our financial problems and needs and may very well destroy the creation of jobs.)
    I don’t really care how much money other people pay in taxes and don’t want to be part of a “soak or hate the rich movement.”
    Besides I have worked for government on the city and state level and know from the inside how much corruption and waste there is and all the dirty tricks politicians and bureaucrats use to trick people into thinking government needs more money to feed its all-devouring gullet.
    Not even a gazillionaire should be expected to pay one cent more to fund the antics such as the GSA farce–and it is endemic and pervasive at all levels of government. I was once ordered to take all the teen-agers that were in the custody of our juvenile delinquency agency to some clothing and shoe stores to purchase the most expensive boots, fur jackets,etc. (whether they needed them or not) that we could find.
    You see we had to use up our clothing budget so our department director could claim to the legislature we needed a BIGGER clothing budget in the next fiscal year.
    And, of course, stuff like that was going on in department after department, after department.
    And I won’t go into detail on how school bureaucrats and their politician allies jump to do away school bands, sports, etc. if the school departments don’t get the money they demand. They never threaten to lay off or fire the hordes of middle level drones that are in school department pretend jobs.

  40. Don’t forget Obama’s 2008 canpaign comment supporting abortion- (if one of his daughters should make a mistake) “I don’t want her punished with a baby!”
    With such a callous disregard for life how can anyone think his talk of helping the poor is anything more than buying votes with federal dollars?

  41. Sorry you had a bad experience in your state and local jobs. There is certainly money that is not spent properly in both the public and private sectors of the economy. That does not mean that everything should be reduced or eliminated. I recently read that one thing the Scandanavian countries do is try things out and get rid of those programs that do not work. Maybe they can do that because they are smaller or because they have a basic agreement about providing basic services.

  42. Mark Greta says:

    There have been a couple posts suggesting in grave error that the republican proposal versus Hilarycare was in some way the same as obamacare. That is a complete and utter lie. If those attempting to make this idiotic talking point care of the democratic party, how about we throw out obamacare and put the entire Heritage package for healthcare in place. Puttin the mandate in the middle of the obamacare mess distorts the entire concept behind what was proposed by the Heritage Foundation and those posting this lie know it.

    So how about an entire switch, obamacare out and heritage plan of 1993 put in its place in total?

    Didn’t think so. You like the socialist aspects of the rest of obumacare and how it removes religious liberty and furthers the goal of expanding the killing of infants and soon old people the government deems to costly to support. That darn Constitution keeps getting in your way or changing America into amerika.

  43. Mark Greta says:

    Ryan, you might want to give up trying to talk with Henry. He states Ryan is wrong on federalism without stating why he is wrong. What Ryan is talking about is our Constitution mandated limited federal government with the local governments holding the power to decide what the federal government should be involved in which is also what the Church teaches. Henry supports unlimited federal power and socialism which he somehow thinks is what our current government is supposed to be.

  44. Mark Greta says:

    Andy, stop reading those radical left wing socialist sites and you might be able to sleep better at night.

    I suppose you think Obama has a clue on budgets. His budget did not get a single vote from his own party.

    The democratic senate has not passed a budget since taking power and the house under democratic control before 2010 did not pass one either even though it is required by law.

    And how about showing us real plans put on the table to fix medicare and social security by the democrats. What makes Ryan a clear expert is that he has at least put something on the table for discussion.

  45. Mark Greta says:

    Great points awashingtondccatholic. The left always needs a demon and a victim. The president of the USA using tax payer money to raise funds preaching hate filled language that is very close to inciting a riot is below what even the most cynical would have expected of this person now holding that office. But it is in fact all he knows. A community organizer in fact uses this tactic to get people stirred up to action building up a villian and them as the victims to get them excited to action. We should expect more of the President of the USA.

  46. Mark Greta says:

    You have to add the simple fact that the founders of this country distrusted a strong central government themselves believing that government closest to the people will be the most responsive to their desires for the role of government. That was made clear in all the restrictions they put in place and in the competing branches of federal government. One only has to read the first and second amendments to see what they thought of central federal power. It was to have walls placed around it preventing them from doing anything to the churches or forming their own (clearly a good idea seeing that when they violated that wall they creaed a secular godless state religion). They also wanted a free press to report on the power grabs of the central government for the people. And they wanted to have the people have the right to assemble and have freedom of speech from the government. Finally, if none of this worked, they wanted the people to have the right to bear arms to overthrow this centralized power for they knew it would bring great evil which is what they put their lives and sacred honor on the line to revolt from in the first place.

    That we have allowed the federal government to grow is the shame of the last few generations of Americans. We can only hope that it can be reversed without the need for the people to take up arms again. Catholic teaching also saw the best government should handle the needs of the people and that is best when it comes closest to the people. Those same people can unite to give the central government power where it makes sense as in National defense.

    So you leftist, how do you explain the clear intentions of our founders and what they put down in writing to protect we the people from this power grabbing federal centralized nanny state power?

  47. Mark Greta

    “A community organizer in fact uses this tactic to get people stirred up to action building up a villian and them as the victims to get them excited to action.”

    FYI: I know some community organizers. They are priests and nuns who have stayed in poor, inner city parishes and have ministered where others have left. I have great admiration for them. Maybe, you should meet them.

  48. Mark Greta:
    “We can only hope that it can be reversed without the need for the people to take up arms again.”

    Come on….

  49. Mark Greta says:

    HMS, you quote seems to make ryan’s point.. “So, too, it is an injustice and at the same time a grave evil and a disturbance of right order, to transfer to the larger and higher collectivity functions which can be performed and provided for by lesser and subordinate bodies.” Seems like the Pope is clearly saying it is a grave evil to have the larger and higher federal government taking functions which can be perofrmed and provided for at the local level.

    No, we cannot pay for healthcare without insurance since the federal government got involved in healthcare. Had the federal government not got involved in healthcare, people could afford it in most cases and there were many charities around to help those who could not. Why could we do this? Because it cost a fraction of what it costs today post federal government involvement. Check out wherever the federal government sticks their nose in and see what happens to cost. How about the cost of education and its performance?

    As to the Church teaching in social justice issues, show me the one where it states that we should have a large centrally controlled government solution to fix every problem. And on distributive justice, show me where that is in a Papal enclyclical or carries magesterial teaching. But even in your quote on the topic, it says that the situation should be “evaluated” if there is a problem of “persons whose basic material needs are unmet.” I doubt that the Pope would consider the problem of the poor in America anywhere close to poverty in the world. It has been a long time since I saw people dying in our streets without food or care. The poor can walk into the greatest healthcare hosptials in the USA in time of need and get care. Name any poor country where this is possible.

  50. Mark Greta says:

    Wow is right, people who voted for the clown we now have as president do not have a clue and seem to not have learned anything in the last few years which means many will make the same basic mistake all over again.

  51. Mark/Greta:
    In response to your comment:
    “And on distributive justice, show me where that is in a Papal enclyclical or carries magesterial teaching.”

    “Among the many and grave duties of rulers who would do their best for their people, the first and chief is to act with justice–with that justice which is called in the Schools distributive–towards each and every class.” (Rerum Novarum, Leo XIII)

    “But the social doctrine of the Church has unceasingly highlighted the importance of distributive justice and social justice for the market economy.” (Caritas in vertitate, Pope Benedict XVI)


  1. [...] Christian Broadcasting Network released Tuesday [April 10, 2012].” – Deacon Greg Kandra, “Paul Ryan: My Catholic Faith Helped Shape Budget Plan,” The Deacon’s Bench, April 11, [...]

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