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By Dr. Jeff Mirus, Catholic Culture, Oct 26, 2021
Jeffrey Mirus holds a Ph.D. in intellectual history from Princeton University. A co-founder of Christendom College, he also pioneered Catholic Internet services. He is the founder of Trinity Communications and CatholicCulture.org.
Every person should be concerned about the well-being of those who are unable to secure for themselves and their families such things as adequate food, clothing, shelter, medical care, basic education, and employment. With thought, we might add a few other potential deprivations to this list, such as reasonable protection against crime or unjust attack. These wholesome concerns are rightly prompted by the natural law. Quite apart from the natural human concern we have for our families and our immediate communities, we all ought to grasp the obvious reality that the natural goods of this world are intended to be shared by all, not hoarded by a few.
In Catholic social teaching, this insight is called the “universal destination of goods”, and it is worth noting that the foundational principles of Catholic social teaching are drawn from the natural law. They can be perceived by all: While Divine Revelation provides additional instruction and insight, these things are known to us primarily through nature itself (as, by the way, is the existence of a Creator). But the more deeply we understand Divine Revelation through Jesus Christ, the stronger our commitment to these basic principles should become. …
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