The Church Has Always Supported Prosperity

The Modern Plague of UnemploymentThere is the prevailing myth that the Church is opposed to prosperity and that poverty is considered an ideal to be sought after. Such a perspective ignores the reality of Church history which shows that the Church encouraged a healthy and balanced economy based on virtue and the need for profit.

In this respect, historian Harold Berman writes: “Although many historians have shown that Western commercial capitalism originated not in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, as is commonly supposed, but in the eleventh and twelfth centuries—in the heyday of the manorial mode of production and of feudal class relations—nevertheless many of the same historians have continued to perpetuate the view that Christian teaching prior to the Reformation remained fundamentally opposed to the profit motive.” Harold J. Berman, Law and Revolution: The Formation of the Western Legal Tradition, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Mass., 1983, p. 336.

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