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Catholic social teaching: solidarity

Posted by | Catholic Charities Communications

The Catholic Church’s social teaching is a rich treasure of wisdom about building a just society and living lives of holiness amid the challenges of modern society. Here is the sixth of the seven principles of the tradition.


We are one human family whatever our national, racial, ethnic, economic, and ideological differences. We are our brothers’ and sisters’ keepers, wherever they may be. Loving our neighbors has global dimensions in a shrinking world. At the core of the virtue of solidarity is the pursuit of justice and peace.


In his encyclical letter On Fraternity and Social Friendship Pope Francis wrote: “In today’s world, the sense of belonging to a single human family is fading, and the dream of working together for justice and peace seems an outdated utopia. What reigns instead is a cool, comfortable and globalized indifference, born of deep disillusionment concealed behind a deceptive illusion: thinking that we are all-powerful, while failing to realize that we are all in the same boat.”


One good way to enter into solidarity with those at the margins is to volunteer with Catholic Charities, which has a broad array of possibilities for encountering those at the peripheries. We need people to give legal advice to migrants, stock our food pantry, tutor children after school, pick up donated baby supplies, welcome refugees, or make meals for the homeless women who come to our door each day. We have learned that Ministry is not just about helping others, but changing ourselves.