By Sr Bernadette Mary Reis, fsp
In a preface contributed to a book entitled “Power and Money: Social Justice according to Bergoglio” by Michele Zanzucchi, Pope Francis once again proposes an economic system that favors everyone instead of a few.
The world’s wealth distributed unequally
Pope Francis talks about an “ambivalence” created by the world of finance and commerce. Never before have these two worlds allowed so many people to benefit from so many goods, while at the same time “excessively exploiting common resources, increasing inequality and deteriorating the planet.” He says that during the trips he has taken since becoming Pope he has seen first-hand this “paradox of a globalized economy which could feed, cure, and house all of the inhabitants who populate our common home, but which– as a few worrisome statistics indicate – instead concentrates the same wealth owned by half of the world’s population in the hands of very few people”.
The Church cannot remain silent
The Pope says that issues regarding the economy are not foreign to the Gospel message since they affect people. Neither can the Church remain silent before “injustice and suffering.” Rather, the Church “unites herself to the millions of men and women who say ‘no’ to injustice in peaceful ways, doing what is possible to create greater equity,” Pope Francis writes.
Awareness of the problem is important
One important thing that can be done is making people aware of how grave the problem is. Pope Francis writes that “this is what Michele Zanzucchi has done: gathering, organizing, and making accessible a synthesis of some of my thoughts on the power of the economy and finance.” The Pope describes his teaching as “situated within the path outlined by the rich patrimony of the Church’s Social Doctrine.”
The Pope concludes his preface on a hopeful note because not even sin “can erase the imprint of God’s image present in every person.” This truth gives us hope that working together the present situation can be improved since “the Lord is in our midst…and therefore is in the world’s factories, businesses and in the banks, just as he is in homes, in the favelas and in refugee camps.”
Potere e denaro: La giustizia sociale secondo Bergoglio is being released on 12 April in Italy by Città Nuova, the publishing house of the Fololari Movement. It contains a collection of Pope Francis’ contributions on wealth and poverty, social justice and injustice, the care and contempt for creation, healthy and perverse finance, etc. The book is edited by Michele Zanzucchi, a writer and journalist who also teaches journalism. He lives in Lebanon.