A journal of academic theology

Caritas in Veritate as a Social Encyclical: A Modest Challenge to Economic Social and Political Institutions

While many elements of Benedict XVI’s Caritas in veritate subscribe to the logic of earlier social encyclicals, the absence of a connection drawn between the social realities, the economic structures, and ideology sets this encyclical apart. Like its predecessors, however, it is marked with the seal of intransigence. In the face of modern culture (judged negatively by Benedict), the challenge is to restore Christian values to people’s consciences. By framing the problem as he does, Benedict turns the Church’s focus away from the interplay of structural forces and gives primacy, as never before, to individual responsibility.

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