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There is a new
faith movement afoot in the public square, and this new blog is certainly one
indicator. This movement seeks wisdom from the idea of the common good –
central to in my Catholic tradition, and many other faith traditions.
The first-ever national
Convention for the Common Good – now the Campaign
for the Common Good, is another sign that this movement is
making an impact. Twenty Catholic social justice organizations and 800
delegates came to Philadelphia
last month to restore the idea of government for the common good and ‘we the
people.’ The event was hailed described as a “historic gathering of Catholics” in Trenton’s
Catholic newspaper, The Monitor.
From the first
papal encyclical on down, government’s very reason for existence is to ensure
the common good. The Convention delegates were inspired by both the
wisdom of the Catholic social tradition and the values at the heart of our US
Constitution. Delegates produced a Platform for the Common Good that addresses issues relevant in
Election 2008 as diverse as health care, immigration, a consistent culture of
life, global climate change and peace-building.
At Mass on
Sunday, our parish priest gave his usual excellent
homily. Fr. Jim incorporated the story of King Solomon and how he
asked God – among all things — for an “understanding
heart.” Solomon requested an understanding heart so that he
could govern with wisdom.
My hope is that
our politicians are listening to the powerful voices shaping this resurgent
common good faith movement that offers prophetic wisdom and common ground
solutions to some of our most urgent moral and political challenges.