This Dark Age

A manual for life in the modern world.

By Daniel Schwindt

Proper attitudes toward poverty

While wealth, properly viewed and handled as a necessary occasion of sin, can be reconciled to the common good, poverty cannot, and therefore it ought to be minimized even if it cannot be eliminated, being one of the ever-present consequences of sin. “The poor you will always have with you,” said Christ[1]—but this should never be construed as the “normalization” of poverty, especially since the statement refers to the preciousness of Christ’s presence, and not about the tolerability of suffering.[2] What, then, is the appropriate attitude of the Christian toward the issue of poverty?

[1] Mt 26:11.

[2] For a more lengthy delineation of what follows, as well as for a presentation of principles for action in regard to poverty, see Economic Justice for All, 186-214.

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