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Archive for March 1st, 2012

Call It Injustice

The notion that labor has priority over capital is one that was specifically delineated by Blessed John Paul II, in his encyclical Laborem Excercens, but the idea is not foreign to reason: it is common sense that an entrepreneur can have all the bright ideas and investment capital in the world, but without workers to do the actual work of manufacturing or providing a service he won’t make a dime.

With this truth comes the conclusion that workers are entitled, in strict justice, to a share of the profits that flow from their labor. Some corporations in fact engage in “profit sharing”, but this is usually seen as a sign of the company’s great generosity.

It is not; it is a matter of justice.  

As you can see from the graphs below, worker productivity has increased in recent years, as have corporate profits. But wages have decreased (while CEO pay has escalated).

Traditionally, Catholic doctrine has stated that four sins “cry to heaven for vengeance”. See what company the sin of injustice to workers keeps:

* Willful murder – Cain’s murder of his brother – Genesis 4:1-16
* Sodomy – the sin of Sodom – Genesis 19:5
* Oppression of the poor esp. widows, orphans and strangers. – Exodus 20:20.
* Defrauding laborers of their wages – based on Deut 24:14                                     r of justice.

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” In dialogue with the Roman Catholic Church we proceed from the fact that this is a Church which has preserved apostolic succession in its hierarchy as well as having a doctrine on the sacraments which is very similar to our doctrine. It is also very important that both Orthodox and Catholics have the same moral foundations and a very similar social doctrine.

The theological differences between Rome and the Orthodox East are well known. Apart from a number of aspects in the realm of dogmatic theology, these are the teaching on primacy in the Church and, more specifically, on the role of the bishop of Rome. This topic is discussed within the framework of the Orthodox-Catholic dialogue which has been taking place for several decades at sessions of a joint commission specially established for this purpose.

But today a different problem is acquiring primary importance – the problem of the unity of Orthodox and Catholics in the cause of defending traditional Christianity. To our great regret, a significant part of Protestant confessions by the beginning of the 21st century has adopted the liberal values of the modern world and in essence has renounced fidelity to Biblical principles in the realm of morality. Today in the West, the Roman Catholic Church remains the main bulwark in the defence of traditional moral values – such, for example, as marital fidelity, the inadmissibility of artificially ending human life, the possibility of marital union as a union only between man and woman.

Therefore, when we speak of dialogue with the Roman Catholic Church, I believe that the priority in this dialogue today should not be the question of the filioque or the primacy of the Pope. We should learn to interact in that capacity that we find ourselves in today – in a state of division and absence of Eucharistic communion. We ought to learn how to perceive each other not as rivals but as allies by understanding that we have a common missionary field and encounter common challenges. We are faced with the common task of defending traditional Christian values, and joint efforts are essential today not out of certain theological considerations but primarily because we ought to help our nations to survive. These are the priorities which we espouse in this dialogue.

I am convinced that the laity – both Catholic and Orthodox – can play and is already playing a most important role in this cause, each in his own place, to where the Lord has called him, by bearing witness to the values of the Gospel which our Churches preserve.”

To read the rest of his wide-ranging interview with Crisis: http://www.crisismagazine.com/2012/an-interview-with-metropolitan-hilarion-alfeyev

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