SPEECH: Loyola University Chicago School of Law Third Annual Lecture of the John Courtney Murray Chair November 10, 2011:John Courtney Murray, S.J.: The Meaning of Social Justice in Catholic Thought Skip over navigation
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Copyright (c) 2012 Loyola University Chicago School of Law
Loyola University Chicago Law Journal

SPEECH: Loyola University Chicago School of Law Third Annual Lecture of the John Courtney Murray Chair November 10, 2011:John Courtney Murray, S.J.: The Meaning of Social Justice in Catholic Thought

Fall, 2012

Loyola University Chicago Law Journal

44 Loy. U. Chi. L.J. 331

Author

Remarks of Robert John Araujo, S.J.*

Excerpt



First of all, I want to thank you for being at this lecture this evening. I am grateful for your attendance and participation!

In preparing my remarks, I realize that you, as individuals and in association with others, pay attention to the plight of other people. Social justice is woven into your community life and exercised through your teaching, advocacy, and corporal works of mercy. I applaud you in these manifestations of being a good citizen. But now I must ask the question: what is social justice? More particularly, what does social justice mean in a Catholic context? This question surely would have been of interest to John Courtney Murray. Furthermore, what should it mean? I shall attempt to supply answers to these questions this evening.

Let me begin with the Constitution of the United States of America, a text often studied and commented upon by Father Murray. That remarkable document's Preamble makes some notable assertions at the outset:


 
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America. 1
 
It is not the state; it is not the agencies of the civil authorities; it is not the President, Congress, or the Judiciary that do this; it is, rather, we the people who do these ...
 
 
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