Centesimus Annus

On the Legacy of St. John Paul the Great

The feast of St. John Paul II was celebrated on October 22, the 39th anniversary of Karol Wojtyła’s formal installation as the Bishop of Rome. This occasion is an ideal time to reflect on St. John Paul the Great’s contribution to the Church and the world. Papal biographer George Weigel continues writing about the late Pope’s legacy, … Read more

The Virtuous Bourgeois

This book review first appeared in the June 1999 edition of Crisis Magazine. It continues yesterday’s symposium on the “bourgeois spirit.” See also Christopher Dawson’s essay, Catholicism and the Bourgeois Mind, Jeffrey Tucker’s reply, In Defense of Bourgeois Civilization, Gerard Russello’s account of Dawson’s contribution, and Crisis editor John Zmirak’s essay, Say It Loud: Bourgeois … Read more

How to Be a Moral Investor

Over the past 30 years, the language of business life has become replete with ethical phraseology. Words such as “social responsibility,” “business ethics,” and “triple bottom line” bounce around in MBA classes, in corporate boardrooms, and even on stock trading floors. This phenomenon is not limited to the business world. Individual and institutional investors regularly … Read more

Cooperation: A Free Market Benefits Everyone

The following will explain the most important idea in the history of social analysis. The notion (actually, it’s a description of reality that is all around us but rarely noticed) has been around for many centuries. It was first discovered by late-medieval monks working in Spain. It was given scientific precision in the classical period. … Read more

Michael Novak, Founding Father

Twenty years ago, the American Catholic thinker Michael Novak put his head together with his friend Rocco Buttiglione, a distinguished Italian thinker, to see what might be done about educating a new cadre of young Catholic leaders in the social doctrine of the Church. John Paul II’s recently released social encyclical, Centesimus Annus, seemed an … Read more

Why Things Cost Money

God has granted me a reprieve. Seven whole days have passed without a major American state abolishing marriage, or a Catholic hero dying prematurely at 98. That frees me up to return to the happy task of unfolding a layman’s understanding of the market economy, viewed through the lens of Christian ethics and prudent political … Read more

The Enduring Importance of Centesimus Annus

Amidst the excitement of John Paul II’s beatification on May 1, the 20th anniversary of the late pope’s most important social encyclical, Centesimus Annus, got a bit lost. Blessed John Paul II was not a man given to rubbing it in. Still, it is worth noting that the encyclical, which celebrated the collapse of European … Read more

Five Things Every Catholic Businessperson Must Know

A few years ago, I had an interesting conversation with one of our country’s most well-known and respected business leaders. It started as I was chatting with the man’s wife, and she asked me what I did for fun. I could have told her I enjoyed golf, or gardening, or skiing, or any number of … Read more

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