Catholic Social Teaching
Catholic Social Teaching is based on the belief that God has a plan for creation, a plan to build His kingdom of peace, love and justice. It holds that God has a special place in this story for each of us, whoever we are. Our part in this plan isn’t just limited to things ‘spiritual’, or things we might do on Sundays, but that it involves every aspect of our lives, from the things we pray about, to how we live as responsible global citizens.
It is very clear that Catholic Social Teaching is not just for adults – children need to learn and participate in the life of the Church too.
Our part at St. Jude’s in this story is a kind-of vocation for the common good, a call to treat everyone as our brothers and sisters and is something that we all share.
Catholic social teaching is rooted in Scripture, formed by the wisdom of Church leaders. It is our moral compass, guiding us on how to live out our faith in the world. Our faith calls us to love God and to love our neighbours in every situation, especially our sisters and brothers living in poverty. Following in the footsteps of Christ, we hope to make present in our unjust and broken world, the justice, love and peace of God.
This short video explains the seven principles of Catholic Social Teaching in an easy to understand way:
Dignity of the Human Person
we know that everyone is important and valuable: no one is better than anyone else. At St. Jude’s, we know that we must make everyone welcome. We live, love and learn by the teaching that ‘we are all made in the image and likeness of God.’
Family and Community
A community needs a soul if it is to become a true home for human beings. You, the people, must give it this soul.’ (St. Pope John Paul II) At St. Jude’s, we know that we must treat our school community as we would our family, pouring our love, understanding and compassion in to the way that we behave and treat others.
Solidarity and the Common Good
Solidarity arises when we remember that we belong to each other. We reflect on this in a special way at Mass. Solidarity spurs us to stand side by side with our sisters and brothers, especially those living in poverty.
At St. Jude’s, we work together to help those who are most in need. In our school, we work together so that our community is good for everyone to live in. At St. Jude’s, our mission is to ‘live, love and learn together joyfully in Jesus’ name,’ meaning that we do all things together in unity, for the benefit of everyone.
Dignity of Work and the Rights of Workers
The Dignity of Work is to be found in scripture and in the ministry of Jesus. Jesus himself worked as a carpenter before starting his ministry. Work is also seen as something which brings dignity to the human person and at our school we work hard to equip all pupils with the skills for learning and life essential for working life. We explore vocations and what God calls us to be.
Rights and Responsibilities
The Church has been clear in defining basic human rights which are founded on the dignity of the human person. However, the Church also recognises that one cannot have rights without responsibilities. At St. Jude’s, we work hard to ensure that the Corporal Works of Mercy are part of our community – our works of charity help us to give alms to the poor.
Option for the Poor and Vulnerable
This area of Catholic Social Teaching is about the emphasis which the Church places upon helping the poor and those who are vulnerable. We share what we have so that everyone gets some; we make sure the people who have the least get served first. In our school, we show care for those who have less than us – we gather together and make donations to charities which support those who need it most; St. Chad’s Sanctuary, for example.
Stewardship of God’s Creation
The Church’s teachings show that we have a duty to ensure that the gift of Creation is shared with all and used wisely and respectfully to ensure its protection both now and for the future. In Laudato Si, Pope Francis has reminded us that the earth is our ‘Common Home’. At St. Jude’s, we work hard to care for our environment by recycling as much as we can, for example.