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Catholic Social Teaching

Catholic Social Teaching (CST) is rooted in Scripture, formed by the wisdom of Church leaders, and influenced by grassroots movements. 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. Modern Catholic Social Teaching is said to have originated in 1891 with the encyclical letter, Rerum Novarum. Since then, a wealth of teaching continues to give new life to the Scriptures and shape the Church’s response to our modern world. Pope Francis’ continues to add to Catholic Social Teaching with his own encyclicals including Laudato Si’ (2015) and Fratelli Tutti (2020). From these Catholic social teaching documents and encyclicals we derive core principles. There is no fixed or official list of principles. Different organisations and writers include different ones. However, they will include the same ideas and beliefs. At St Teresa's we are guided by the following 9 principles: Human Dignity, The Common Good, Participation, Subsidiarity, Stewardship, Solidarity, Preferential Option for the Poor, Distributive Justice and Promoting Peace. 


"Love and charity, are service, helping others, serving others. There are many people who spend their lives in this way, in the service of others. … When you forget yourself and think of others, this is love! And with the washing of the feet the Lord teaches us to be servants, and above all, servants as He was a servant to us, for every one of us."

Pope Francis - Jubilee audience, March 12, 2016