The Essential Library (religious)

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There are a small number of articles I've found online which I think are essential reading for anyone interrested in understanding how I come to view the world. Just to make sure that they continue to be available to my readers, I'm mirroring copies of them here.

Charity and Charities (Original, mirror)

Quotes to look for :

“The policy of state support of the poor through taxation, which has everywhere been increasing its scope, has not only diminished the field of Catholic charity, but has inflicted serious injury upon the spirit of charity among all classes.”

“The limitations and defects of public charity are well known; it is almost inevitably more mechanical and less sympathetic that private charity; it is more wasteful, not only because it is less carefully administered, but also on account of the readiness of many persons to claim public relief as a right; and, inasmuch as it supplants appeals to the individual conscience by the imposition of a tax, it inflicts a mortal injury upon the spontaneity of charity and the sense of personal responsibility towards the unfortunate.”

“The general principles underlying the whole problem of state charity would seem to be these: instead of assuring every person a living, the State ought so to regulate economic conditions that every person able to obtain a livelihood by labour should have that opportunity; that it should have charge of certain extreme forms of distress, such as virulent disease and insanity; and that in general it should co-operate with voluntary charitable agencies, and stand ready to relieve all serious want which is not met by them. At any rate, students and workers in the field of charity seem to be practically unanimous in the belief that the scope of private charity ought to be extended rather than restricted.”

Care of the Poor by the Church (Original, mirror)

Quotes to look for :

“Between State provision for the poor and ecclesiastical relief the relation is as follows: the State should by its social politics prepare the way for the development of voluntary poor-relief, and should put these politics into practice against lazy individuals; on the other hand, the provision for the really poor is in the first place the business of the private person and the Church, in the second place of the community, and in the last place also of the State.”
“The part played by the State should however be only subsidiary; the chief rôle should be regularly filled by voluntary relief and neighbourly charity, since thus alone will the principle of spontaneous generosity and individuality be retained, inasmuch as State relief rests on compulsory taxation and always remains bureaucratic. The Church therefore asserts her innate right to care for the poor together and in conjunction with the State, and condemns the agitation for a state monopoly of poor-relief as a violation of a principle of justice.”

Wards of the State By Dermot Quinn   (Original, mirror

Hilaire Belloc saw Obama coming.


 Additional Useful Links

The Tool Box – Theory of Knowledge


Catholic Encyclopedia


G. K. Chesterton


Catholic Catechism


Last updated on Jan. 27, 2011

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