Responsibility and Ethics in Finance

The current historical moment is a call to the very mission of the Church in Europe
by . | Source: L'Osservatore Romano








“Today in particular, the economic crisis makes evident that a completelyself-referential market is unsustainable and, while it raises new questionsabout the responsibility and ethics of finance, it re-proposes with ever moreurgency a fundamental question about the destiny, dignity and spiritual vocationof the human person. The Church intends to positively address this challenge,offering to the whole of society new ways to meet and dialogue, beginning withthe Gospel.” For Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, this is the lineto maintain in the midst of the crisis that is affecting Europe. The Cardinal’sreflections were offered at the opening of the conference of the Council of theEuropean Bishops’ Conferences (CCEE) and the Pontifical Council for Promotingthe New Evangelization, on Tuesday, November 22 in the St. Pius X hall in viadella Conciliazione, at the Vatican. The current historical moment is a call tothe very mission of the Church in Europe because, the Cardinal explained, today,“the new evangelization is not only about taking shelter but is a newspringtime; a means for appreciating the new shoots that are sprouting in anancient wood.”

Broadeninghis gaze over the European horizon, Cardinal Bertone also revealed how today itis, “increasingly difficult to distinguish between truth, error and lies. Acertain pluralism does not want to allow a distinction between good and evil.Next to a healthy secularism lies an intolerant secularism.” In fact, “theprinciple of non-discrimination,” he said, “is often abused as a weapon in theconflict of rights to construct a dictatorship of relativism which tends toexclude God, community and public dimensions of faith or the presence ofreligious symbols and places itself in open conflict with Christian values:against marriage between a man and a woman, against the defense of life fromconception to natural death.”


The Secretary of State brought greetings from the Pope to members of theconference saying that Benedict XVI, “greatly appreciates today’s initiative asanother step in the journey of the new evangelization of Europe,” and offeredthanks to Cardinal Péter Erdo, primate of Hungary and President of the CCEE, andto Archbishop Salvatore Fisichella, President of the Pontifical Council forPromoting the New Evangelization. Together they have organized the seminar onEurope and the new evangelization on the occasion of the celebration of fortyyears of the Council of European Bishops’ Conferences. An anniversary whichCardinal Bertone said emphasized important prospects for the future, indicatingespecially the style, “of communion, collegiality and collaboration between thedifferent Bishops’ Conferences and individual bishops, in the various areas ofpastoral work and in particular in ecumenical and interreligious dialogue.”


“Since the beginning,” he said, “a priority for the CCEE has been the newevangelization and this forty year anniversary is rightly an invitation to renewthat priority. It is particularly dear to the Holy Father.” “The specificity ofthe new evangelization differentiates it from the ordinary activity of theChurch and the mission ad gentes. To the baptized whose faith has beenlost and who are no longer practicing, the Gospel must be announced with newardor, new methods and new expressions. The adjective, “new” should not howevermake us think that reflection on the past or the priceless patrimony of theexperience of the Church is useless. The Gospel says, “Every scribe who has beeninstructed in the kingdom of heaven, is like the head of a household who bringsfrom his storeroom both the new things and the old.” (Matthew 13:52). The newevangelization, too, needs old things and new things in its storeroom. A Latinproverb says: tempora mutantur et nos mutamur in illis, thus we mustalways bring from our storeroom new things too.”


“The new evangelization,” explained the Secretary of State, “occurs in achanging world. In our times, we must speak of God in a context that is oftenindifferent and sometimes hostile. The Holy Father recalled this in his talk onOctober 15 in the Paul VI hall. But he did not place the accent on the negative,but on trust in the Word of God which, he affirmed, “despite this condition ofcontemporary man, continues to grow and spread.” He mentioned three reasons forthis: the first is that, “the strength of the Word does not first of all dependon our actions, but on God;” the second is that even today there is no lack of“good terrain” which will bring the seed of the Word to produce good fruit; andthe third is that, “the Gospel announcement has truly reached the ends of theearth and even in the midst of indifference, misunderstanding and persecution,many continue even today, to courageously open their hearts and minds to theinvitation of Christ.” Trust in God, therefore, and in his Word, together with ahealthy realism which allows us to recognize obstacles, to try to dismantleprejudice, to prepare the terrain as much as possible before sowing the seeds ofthe Gospel.”







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