On the surface, it would seem so; in Scripture, there are nearly 3,000 verses concerned with justice for the lowly, the oppressed, and the stranger. Read more

Not long after Pope Francis’ election in 2013, we friends around Solidarity Hall began to sense that some of our fellow Catholics were just not getting this new Argentinian guy. We decided to collect some essays, partly “translating” Francis for an American audience and also speculating on how we saw the coming years of his papacy. Somewhere I had heard of a youngish but talented Patheos Channel blogger, Sam Rocha, and we asked him to contribute something. Sam obligingly sent us… Read more

Like some hack sportswriter who skips the game but writes his piece by listening on the radio at home, I offer here a report on last week’s Trying to Say God conference at the University of Notre Dame, despite the fact I couldn’t make it there. (Family unexpectedly came in from out of town.) Happily, I was able to listen to some of the presentations posted as audio files on SoundCloud, courtesy of that estimable Patheos blog, Sick Pilgrim, whose proprietors… Read more

Raymond Sickinger, a professor of history at Providence College, has written an impressive new biography of Blessed Frédéric Ozanam, the mid-19th Century French layman who Pope St. John Paul II called an “apostle of charity” and “a precursor of the social doctrine of the Church.” Read more

It’s sadly become somewhat de rigueur, particularly but not exclusively on the American political right, to proof-text or misread this passage or to read into it things that were not intended, to prove an ideological point or – as I rather more strongly suspect – to put a religious gloss on an ideological position (that of libertarianism, or anarcho-capitalism) which is, according to the social teaching of the Church, fundamentally godless. Read more

How wonderful it would be if solidarity, this beautiful and, at times, inconvenient word, were not simply reduced to social work and became instead the default attitude in political, economic, and scientific choices, as well as in the relationships among individuals, peoples and countries. Only by educating people to a true solidarity will we be able to overcome the ‘culture of waste,’ which doesn’t concern only food and goods but, first and foremost, the people who are cast aside by our techno-economic systems which, without even realizing it, are now putting products at their core, instead of people. Read more

“How can I make you realize the misery of the poor? How can I make you understand that your wealth comes from their weeping?” – St. Basil the Great. “Not to share our own wealth with the poor is theft from the poor and deprivation of their means of life; we do not possess our own wealth, but theirs.” – St. John Chrysostom It is always easier to accuse than to confess. But in reality we’re all sinners of one sort… Read more

If you have any degree of devotion to, affection for, or interest in Dorothy Day, The Reckless Way of Love is a must-have addition to your library. And at 125 pages, it won’t take up too much space. We owe a debt of gratitude for our friends at Plough for this accessible yet challenging introduction to Dorothy’s writings and Catholic Worker spirituality. Read more

Myself I’ve never met a saint of the Church and I’ve only met one person who ever knew a prospective saint. (It was someone who knew Dorothy Day well.) But we all need to meet more of them, even if it’s only in the pages of books like Fr. James Martin’s My Life with the Saints, now out in a 10th anniversary edition. The author picked out sixteen of his favorite saints (including saint-in-the-making Dorothy Day) and interestingly wraps bits of… Read more

On Friday, January 20th, Donald Trump will be inaugurated as the 45th President of the United States of America. It will be dark day for our nation, and a portent of even more dire days ahead, because the highest office in our land is being assumed by a fundamentally lawless man. Like Erebus and Nyx, Trump is born of Chaos. His campaign, indeed his broader public career and persona, have been characterized by the absence of any recognized constraints on his conduct and by the cavalier violation of… Read more

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