Pope Francis’s Call to the Apostolate of Politics

In his general audience of September 9, 2020, Pope Francis catechized the faithful about the nature of the common good. There are three points to note.

First, the Pope used this opportunity to teach us that there is a deep, structural connection between the Church’s teaching about the nature of God, the calling to Christian charity, and the legal and political orders. The facile manner in which many people today pretend that the Church’s message of brotherly love, of living a life of holiness and sacrifice for others, has no connection with what She has perennially taught about law and political order. It is as if some Catholic commentators fear an allergic reaction if they resort to juridical language in teaching the faith, so they prefer exclusively the allegedly more dulcid-sounding tones of merely “pastoral” (i.e. a-political) rhetoric. Pope Francis shows that this is a false alternative. Everything the Church does and teaches, both about politics and about personal virtue, is ordered and connected to the same end.

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Liberalism and the Black Legend

«Liberalism», a wise pastor once admonished the world, «is a sin». It is both a sin against faith and against the moral order: «In the doctrinal order, it is heresy, and consequently a mortal sin against faith. In the practical order, it is a sin against the commandments of God and of the Church, for it virtually transgresses all commandments». This was the language of the Church in the days when her bloody and heroic wars with the liberal order were still within living memory, with more still waiting to be fought after Don Félix wrote his polemic. Continue reading

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The Apostolate of Politics

[Reblogged at The Josias.]

The excellent journal American Affairs, which from its very first issue has consistently delivered content of the highest quality to its readers, now publishes an essay on The Eclipse of Catholic Fusionism, by Kevin Gallagher. It is an account of the rise and fall of «fusionism», the alliance of convenience between the disciples of right-wing liberalism and those who sought to defend the moral law of the Church. This settlement, through which Catholics sought to make their mark on politics, reached its highest degree of influence in the Bush II era and into the early years of Obama’s first term. Needless to say, it was a complete political failure. Continue reading

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