private charity

Timothy King 8-03-2011

Today, "Values and Capitalism," a project of the American Enterprise Institute, sponsored a full-page ad in Politico (see page 13) in response to the Circle of Protection. While it is encouraging to see another full-page ad urging our nation's legislators to be concerned about the poor, it is unfortunate that the critique of the Circle of Protection and Sojourners work is based on an error.

Timothy King 7-29-2011

In response to Sojourners' radio ads about the budget debates, the Family Research Council's political action committee has launched radio ads in Kentucky and Ohio arguing that deficit reduction should cut programs that serve poor and vulnerable people. The ads assert that it is the private individual, not government, who has a responsibility to the poor. The ads say, "Jesus didn't instruct the government of his day to take the rich young ruler's property and redistribute it to the poor. He asked the ruler to sell his possessions and help the poor. Charity is an individual choice, not a government mandate."

This could put the speaker of the House, a Catholic, in a difficult position. Catholic social teaching instructs that the government does have a direct responsibility to the poor and that private charity is only one of the ways that Christians express concern for "the least of these." This ad sets itself in direct opposition to that teaching and the values that it comes from. The speaker was already in a tough spot when the Catholic bishops came out with a strong critique of the House plan, but now he has a powerful political organization calling for him to ignore Catholic social teaching all together.

In the tradition of the church, the season of Lent was observed through prayer, fasting, and almsgiving.
Jim Wallis 5-27-2010
The insurgent Tea Party and its Libertarian philosophy is a political phenomenon, not a religious one.
Jim Wallis is on vacation this week, but before leaving he wrote an op-ed for The Washington Post<
Jim Wallis 3-25-2010

Given Glenn Beck's threat that "the hammer is coming," I have been keeping my eyes and ears open to see and hear what attacks he might next make on us or the growing movement of Christians who share with us the call to

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