Articles

Social justice – is there a conflict between Hayek’s liberalism and Catholic social thought?

Hayek

The term “social justice” leads to a lot of sabre rattling in Catholic social teaching circles. Greater attention to its meaning, including to some of the ambiguities about its meaning, might be helpful in promoting more fruitful discussion. Debates are often clouded by bringing F. A. Hayek’s disdain for the whole idea of social justice into the discussion. Supporters of a free economy, in the spirit of Hayek’s work, are therefore pitted against supporters of social justice in Catholic social thought. Constructive dialogue is impeded.

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The elderly – the roots of our society

Every year on the third Sunday of June, The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales invites people to celebrate a Day for Life. Its primary purpose, as outlined by St John Paul II in Evangelium Vitae, is “to foster in individual consciences, in families, in the Church and in civil society a recognition of the meaning and value of human life at every stage and in every condition”. Building on last year’s theme of “care at the end of life”, this year, the bishops are inviting the faithful to reflect on protecting and valuing old age.

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Catholic Economists in Universities. Part 2: Excerpts from Interviews with Catholic Economists from North America

This is the second of two posts on how Catholic economists see their work. The posts are published in celebration of World Catholic Education Day on May 26, 2022, and within the context of the Global Compact on Education called for by Pope Francis. Quentin Wodon is a Lead Economist at the World Bank and a Distinguished Research Affiliate with the College of Business at Loyola University New Orleans.

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Law, regulation and economic life – from “how much regulation?” to “who regulates?”

Catholic social teaching has a lot to say about the basic systems of law that should underlie a flourishing business economy. In recent years, Catholic social teaching has also commented on regulation. Although a distinction between law and regulation is not made explicitly in Catholic social teaching, such a distinction is helpful. It would help clear up confusion between the role of government in regulating economic life (where prudential judgement might be applied both in relation to who regulates and how much) and the role of government in providing the basic framework of governance.

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Research in Service of Catholic Education – Part II: Interviews with Friends and Colleagues of Professor Grace

In the interview with Professor Grace mentioned in Part I of this post, I asked him about the areas where he believed more research was needed. He suggested three main areas: (i) Catholic Education and service for the Poor; (ii) the effectiveness of the spiritual, moral and social cultures of Catholic schools; (iii) the education and formation of Catholic school leaders and teachers. These themes are echoed by his friends and colleagues in interviews conducted over the last six months that are available in a compilation from the Global Catholic Education project. The interviews are organized around the following questions:

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