Restoring the Sacred

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Words of Relevance: Pope Leo XIII on Socialism

In the midst of all the media spin over recent candid interviews by our current pontiff, it might be instructive to go back to one of the lions of the Catholic Church for a clear understanding of the Church's position on socialism.

In his encyclical, QUOD APOSTOLICI MUNERIS (On Socialism),  promulgated on 28 December 1878, Pope Leo XIII denounced socialism as "a Satanic counterfeit of the Gospel." He had much more to say about it, but one particular quote stood out.

Here's the quote:
“...they assail the right of property sanctioned by natural law; and by a scheme of horrible wickedness, while they seem desirous of caring for the needs and satisfying the desires of all men, they strive to seize and hold in common whatever has been acquired either by title of lawful inheritance, or by labor of brain and hands, or by thrift in one's mode of life. . . .But the boldness of these bad men, which day by day more and more threatens civil society with destruction, and strikes the souls of all with anxiety and fear, finds its cause and origin in those poisonous doctrines which, spread abroad in former times among the people, like evil seed bore in due time such fatal fruit.”