Carl E. Olson | CWR blog
Perhaps you've already heard the news that Pope Francis is a socialist and Marxist, a rumor that was finally established as truth in his address yesterday to the United Nations System Chief Executives Board for Coordination (or, as call it in our family, the "UNSCEBFC"). Perhaps you've read the speech; perhaps you haven't.
Whatever the case, here's a fun little exercise: identify the pontiff's statement about redistribution from the following texts:
1) "The principle of solidarity, in a wide sense, must inspire the effective search for appropriate institutions and mechanisms, whether in the sector of trade, where the laws of healthy competition must be allowed to lead the way, or on the level of a wider and more immediate redistribution of riches and of control over them, in order that the economically developing peoples may be able not only to satisfy their essential needs but also to advance gradually and effectively."
2) "Peace, however, is not merely a gift to be received: it is also a task to be undertaken. In order to be true peacemakers, we must educate ourselves in compassion, solidarity, working together, fraternity, in being active within the community and concerned to raise awareness about national and international issues and the importance of seeking adequate mechanisms for the redistribution of wealth, the promotion of growth, cooperation for development and conflict resolution. “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God”, as Jesus says in the Sermon on the Mount (Mt 5:9)."
3) Every contract is a human matter, conducted by people and directed towards serving people. Only then will the market forces, set up, and periodically revised and diversified, be able to play their beneficial role: for they will function under the responsibility of individuals and peoples who are free, equal and linked by solidarity, and under the regulation of moral norms that are binding upon everybody. Healthy competition of this sort is in its turn conditioned by 'a wider and more immediate redistribution of riches and of control over them' ... . It is thus in this perspective that one must clarify and resolve the painful problem of the debts that weigh upon the poorer countries, the problem of common funds, the problem of a more adequate and more effective institutional framework of worldwide solidarity."