There are three fundamental principles of CST, the greatest of which the Church insists is the first: A correct understanding of the human person, which is Human Dignity: this is the prime principle!

There are three fundamental principles of CST, the greatest of which the Church insists is the first: A correct understanding of the human person, which is Human Dignity: this is the prime principle! Then there are Solidarity and Subsidiarity.

CST is built on these three key principles. This is evident not only in the encyclicals from 1931 to Centesimus Annus (CA) to Deus Caritas Est (DCE) to Caritas in Veritate (CIV) but in Pope John Paul II’s continuing teachings, for example, when he told the American bishops in 1999 that:

"Her moral vision in this area 'rests on the threefold cornerstone of human dignity, solidarity and subsidiarity'” (Blessed John Paul, Ecclesia in America, 55, 1999)


papal sealPope Benedict XVI reaffirmed his predessor's words by emphasizing

 “It is up to the lay faithful to demonstrate concretely in their personal and family life, in social, cultural and political life that…the fundamental principles of the social doctrine of the Church such as the dignity of the human person, subsidiarity and solidarity are extremely relevant and valuable in order to support new paths of development in service to the whole person and to all humanity.” (Benedict XVI, Address to the 24th Plenary Session of the Pontifical Council for the Laity, 21 May 2010)

 

What does one do with these principles?

 

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