- “In the midst of mankind and in the world she [the
Church] is the sacrament of God's love and, therefore, of the most
splendid hope, which inspires and sustains every authentic undertaking
for and commitment to human liberation and advancement…. With her social
teaching the Church seeks to proclaim the Gospel and make it present in
the complex network of social relations....
- “The Church has the right to be a teacher for mankind, a
teacher of the truth of faith....Men and women must respond to the gift
of salvation not with a partial, abstract or merely verbal acceptance,
but with the whole of their lives — in every relationship that defines
life....This right of the Church is at the same time a duty, because she
cannot forsake this responsibility without denying herself and her
fidelity to Christ....
"The object of the Church's social doctrine is essentially the same that constitutes the reason for its existence: the human person called to salvation, and as such entrusted by Christ to the Church's care and responsibility....at play in society are the dignity and rights of the person, and peace in the relationships between persons and between communities of persons….the Church's social doctrine has the task of proclamation, but also of denunciation....
"The first recipient of the Church's social doctrine is the Church community in its entire membership, because everyone has social responsibilities that must be fulfilled....This social doctrine implies as well responsibilities regarding the building, organization and functioning of society, that is to say, political, economic and administrative obligations — obligations of a secular nature — which belong to the lay faithful, not to priests or religious. These responsibilities belong to the laity in a distinctive manner, by reason of the secular condition of their state of life, and of the secular nature of their vocation"