Dale Ahlquist on the Trouble with Catholic Social Teaching

Reader Stu writes:

Dale Ahlquist [President of the American Chesterton Society] recently came to address our local version of AOTM on “The Trouble with Catholic Social Teaching

It was great and timely.

Dale is one of these wild-eyed fanatics who thinks the popes are not utopian idiots in ivory towers, but sane people who believe God doesn’t ask the impossible of us and will provide the grace to do his will if we will but screw our courage to the sticking place and try obeying him. And since he’s lived it, he kinda knows what he’s talking about. Walked out of a K Street lobby job and embarked on this crazy Chestertonian quest to promote the work of Chesterton and obey the Catholic Church as best he could. Turns out God provides. Praise God.

I love the guy. Check him out!

  • AquinasMan

    Why I love Chesterton: “Truth that is pitiless vs. pity that is untruthful”

    Thanks for posting the link! Thanks to Stu for hosting it!

    • Stu

      Admittedly, I get some selfish satisfaction out of bringing such speakers to the area.

      We had about 75 men on deck for this presentation and they loved it. I really believe the time is right for Catholics to push Authentic Catholic Social Teaching as the answer to many of our problems.

      • ChGPe

        I have no personal beef with people who love the Chestertonian distributism idea, but I do get bothered to no end by distributists who seem to think they hold the trademark on “Authentic Catholic Social Teaching.” It causes me to shudder every time I hear that phrase.

        • Stu

          Well, unfortunately CST has some baggage with it as Dale explains.

          I use it to mean to distinguish it from those who attempt to assert the CST means homosexuality, abortion, Catholic priestesses and whatever other “wrongs” as Dale called them. Only then can I begin to explain to the other side of the political realm that they actually have to consider what CST really teaches instead of dismissing because of those who assert that it means homosexuality, abortion, etc

  • Elmwood

    Great presentation of distributism by Dale Ahlquist, but I just don’t see how you can beat hudge and gudge when there are no political alternatives. Think about it, most catholics haven’t even heard of Rerum Novarum or Caritas in Varitate let alone GKC and distributism.

    Until distributism becomes common sense for most catholics, and people like Fr. Sirico have a change of heart, don’t hold your breath for any catholic social doctrine to be implemented in our “exceptional” america. we can only apply band aids to the wounds in our culture at best.

    • Stu

      Did you hear what Dale said in the talk when confronted with similar sentiments?

      • Elmwood

        Yes, but what do we do with minimum wage, corporate taxes, social security, obamacare… etc.? Those things which have a direct impact today. I think you could argue that’s better to have a minimum wage than not, even if it isn’t an ideal solution.

        I think we have to be realists and apply distributive concepts where we can, even if imperfectly. which is also why i think there needs to be a third political party for catholics. I don’t think we can “fix” the system so to speak at this point. The GOP and democrats are too entrenched in their ways.

        BTW, sounds like a great group you have put together.

        • Stu

          Thank you for the compliment. It is a good group and we have some good momentum going forward into the coming year with planned guests and most importantly support from some of our solid priests in the region.

          I think going after the things you mentions are tactical issues and not strategic. The strategic outlook should be to take back control of our local communities and assert ourselves to the higher levels of government. Now how do you get men thinking like that?

          Start a group like this in your area. :)

  • James Kohn

    awesome talk!


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