October 2, 2011

Feast of the Guardian Angels

For October 2, there are readings from Sacred Scripture on the three-fold office of angels: to praise God, to act as His messengers, and to watch over mortal men.

“Let us praise the Lord whom the Angels praise, whom the Cherubim and Seraphim proclaim Holy, Holy, Holy” (second antiphon of Lauds)

“Behold I will send my angel, who shall go before thee, and keep thee in thy journey, and bring thee into the place that I have prepared. Take notice of him, and hear his voice” (Exodus 23; capitulum ad Laudes)

“See that you despise not one of these little ones: for I say to you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father who is in heaven.” (Gospel, St. Matthew 18:10)


The Love of Money, and its Cost

“For the love of money is the root of all evil.” (“Radix omnium malorum cupiditas est,” St. Paul’s Letter to Timothy, 6:10)

Twice Angry

Jesus became angry on only two occasions in scripture.

Once, regarding those who “offend” little children, abusing them, ending their innocence, wounding them spiritually and psychologically. It would be better for those who did such things, he said, if they would have a millstone placed around their necks and be thrown into to sea to certain death by drowning.

He could not have been more clear.

The second occasion, of course, was when he picked up the whip in the Temple precincts, and overturned the tables of the money-changers, declaring “You have taken the house of God and turned it into a den of thieves.”

(Not by chance, I think, he was dead a few days later. He had offended powerful people.)

So there were only two occasions which sparked his righteous anger: abuse of children, and abuse of financial dealings in the Temple precincts.

So why bring up money? And why now?

Because it is important right now.

St. Paul says, the “love of money” is “the root of all evil.”

The “love of money” leads to trickery, deception, oppression, and misery, and then to violence and war.

If we wish to be “peacemakers,” we must confront the problem of money, the problem of the love of money, and create laws and structures that can bring as much justice as possible into economic affairs — with the result being, not Utopia, not heaven on earth, but slightly more common good, general prosperity, and peace.

We all know there is something amiss in our globalized economy, and in our current monetary system.

We know that there are floods of “money” in our world. (I put the word in quotes, because most of our money is not money at all, but debt, that is, it doesn’t exist except as a promise from somebody else to be made good at some future time.)

We also know there is at the same time a shortage of “money” everwhere — Greece can’t pay the debts it owes, nor can millions of home owners, who have defaulted on their mortgages and lost their homes, nor can many businesses obtain loans to expand, and so forth.

So there are rivers of money, and deserts with no money.

Is this a matter for a Catholic journalist to follow. Yes. Of course. Without a doubt.

The social teaching of the Church is not as theologically defined as the dogmas of the faith (Cardinal Ratzinger makes the same point in the 1985 talk of his that I reprint below), but the essential dynamic of that teaching, that we must seek justice, that God loves justice, that justice and charity are the distinguishing marks of people who follow Christ, these are fundamental truths — even if what we should do, precisely, in specific circumstances, is often very hard to discern.

The essential message of Pope Benedict during his recent trip to Germany is that Germany’s politicians must seek justice, as I wrote yesterday.

And justice cannot be reconciled with trickery, deception, thievery, oppression — financial practices which steal from people the fruits of their labors.

Nevertheless, we have an economic system today which seems unusually marked by injustice, by fraud, deception, opaque financial maneuvers, derivative contracts in the trillions that can move markets in moments, even taking down entire national economies.

This is not justice, it is savagery.

This is a reflection of a “love of money” which is “the root of all evil.”

And the result of evil is misery, not blessedness, for people. “The wages of sin are… death.”

If our various markets crash, if the savings of millions vanish overnight, if unemployment increases relentlessly, we must act to restore our community, and restore justoce.

Human beings created this system, and they can change and correct it, even if it collapses.

This means — we van always have hope. There is no need to yield to despair.

Pope Benedict has long meditated on these matters.

He is not known as a great source of social teaching, but in his last encyclical, there was a powerful appeal for a return to reason and justice, before we bring about the collapse of our system, and untold misery.

A Modest Proposal: Haircuts for All

The essence of that justice would be shared sacrifice, shared losses — shared suffering.

The essence of “sweet reason” would be for the economic “game” now playing out to be canceled before it finally crushes millions.

Instead of a general collapse, everyone — bondholders and bond-payers alike — should “get a haircut.” This would mean: everyone loses something, perhaps even a lot, to avoid a worse result, that a few gain all and most end with nothing.

In coming days, we could see dramatic moves in our financial markets — it is October again, and October is a time for market crashes.

There are rumors and fears — and hopes, for those on the other side of certain trades — that the Euro as a currency will crash and burn.

There are rumors that Germany has already decided to leave the Euro framework, and reinstate the German mark as its currency. Here is a link to one such rumor: https://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2011/09/super-hot-insider-reports-germany.html

This report says that the news to expect in coming days includes:

—Greece defaults

—Germany protects German banks but other countries cannot do the same, thus quickly provoking multiple sovereign defaults and or bank failures, all of which may easily lead to a payments crisis in the global banking system. Derivatives are particularly at risk in terms of operation and execution.

—The Euro falls in value especially against the US dollar

—The Germans announce they are re-introducing the Deutschmark. They have already ordered the new currency and asked that the printers hurry up. The Euro falls even more on any news that Germany is withdrawing from the Euro.

—Legal wrangling begins as to the legality of Germany’s decision. Resolution takes years.

—Germany insists that the Euro continue to exist even they do not use it any longer, suggesting new legal instruments to strengthen European Unification including new EU Treaties.

See: https://www.pippamalmgren.com/77.html

Why do I spend time on this?

Because it is important. I am not a financial expert, clearly. But I am a citizen. I run a magazine business, taking in money and spending mone. I am a person who lives in society, buying and selling, and what I see is that the chaos opening up before us will create misery, and put pressure on families, and break families, and harm children. And the children are my first concern — in line with Jesus’ teaching above.

Almost 3,000 Every Day

In the spring of 2011 in the United States, there were about 1 million homes in foreclosure, with several million more in the foreclosure pipeline.

Does everyone understand what it means to foreclose on 1 million homes in a year?

There are 365 days in a year. If 1 million homes are foreclosed on during the year, it means 2,700 homes are foreclosed on every single day.

Of course, some of these are not owned by families as primary residences. But many are.

Can you imagine 2,500 families every single day, day after day, for an entire year — for two years, for three years, as has happened — leaving their homes, which are taken by the banks because the mortgage can’t be paid?

At the same time, there is new evidence that the US Federal Reserve of the United States loaned out $16 trillion dollars, entirely secretly, since 2007, to the banks of the world.

Homeowners cannot refinance their mortages, or only with difficulty, but the banks have received trillions.

Is this justice?

We know about these loans only because the first- ever US General Accounting Office audit of the Federal Reserve was carried out in the past year due to the Ron Paul-Alan Grayson Amendment to the Dodd-Frank bill, which passed last year.

Jim DeMint, a Republican Senator, and Bernie Sanders, an independent Senator from Vermont, led the call for a Federal Reserve audit in the Senate, but watered down the original language of the house bill (HR1207), so that a complete audit would not be carried out.

Ben Bernanke, Alan Greenspan, and various other bankers vehemently opposed the audit, warning that the audit would have a negative effect on markets (because if a bank is revealed to have needed a loan, it looks weak to market investors).

Nevertheless, the results of the first audit in the Federal Reserve nearly 100-year history were posted on Senator Sander’s webpage on July 21, this summer, two months ago.

Here is the link:


What was revealed in the audit was startling. Here is a brief summary:

$16,000,000,000,000.00 (TRILLION) was secretly given out to US banks and corporations and foreign banks everywhere from France to Scotland. From the period between December 2007 and June 2010, the Federal Reserve had secretly bailed out many of the world’s banks, corporations, and governments. Virtually none of the money has been returned and it was loaned out at 0% interest.

To place $16 trillion into perspective, the Gross Domestic Product of the United States, the sum of all goods and services produced in the country in one year, is only $14.12 trillion. The entire national debt of the United States government spanning its 200+ year history is only $14.5 trillion.

The budget that is being debated so heavily in Congress and the Senate is only $3.5 trillion.

There was no public debate about whether $16,000,000,000,000 would be given to failing banks and failing corporations around the world.

When you have conservative Republican stalwarts like Jim DeMint(R-SC) and Ron Paul(R-TX) as well as self-identified Democratic socialists like Bernie Sanders all supporting a bill to audit the Federal Reserve, it seems clear that the Federal Reserve is not presently accountabile to any public scrutiny.

Here is a link to a PDF file of the complete audit, which is quite long (I had a hard time myself getting through it): https://sanders.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/GAO%20Fed%20Investigation.pdf

The list of institutions which received the most money from the Federal Reserve can be found on page 131 of the Audit, and are as follows:

Citigroup: $2.5 trillion($2,500,000,000,000)
Morgan Stanley: $2.04 trillion ($2,040,000,000,000)
Merrill Lynch: $1.949 trillion ($1,949,000,000,000)
Bank of America: $1.344 trillion ($1,344,000,000,000)
Barclays PLC (United Kingdom): $868 billion ($868,000,000,000)
Bear Sterns: $853 billion ($853,000,000,000)
Goldman Sachs: $814 billion ($814,000,000,000)
Royal Bank of Scotland (UK): $541 billion ($541,000,000,000)
JP Morgan Chase: $391 billion ($391,000,000,000)
Deutsche Bank (Germany): $354 billion ($354,000,000,000)
UBS (Switzerland): $287 billion ($287,000,000,000)
Credit Suisse (Switzerland): $262 billion ($262,000,000,000)
Lehman Brothers: $183 billion ($183,000,000,000)
Bank of Scotland (United Kingdom): $181 billion ($181,000,000,000)
BNP Paribas (France): $175 billion ($175,000,000,000)

“No agency of the United States government should be allowed to bailout a foreign bank or corporation without the direct approval of Congress and the president,” Senator Sanders said this summer. “This is a clear case of socialism for the rich and rugged, you’re-on-your-own individualism for everyone else.”



A Talk by Joseph Ratzinger on the Market Economy and Ethics

In 2008, Pope Benedict raised eyebrows when he commented on the market crash and economic turmoil in the fall of 200.

“Money vanishes, it is nothing”

In an October 7 talk that year, as stocks were crashing, Benedict reflected on the chaotic financial markets. It was almost exactly three years ago.

Famously, he said: “Money vanishes, it is nothing” and concluded that “the only solid reality is the word of God.”

The Vatican at the time ran articles in its official newspaper that criticized the free-market model for having “grown too much and badly in the past two decades.”

The Osservatore Romano’s editor, Giovanni Maria Vian, said that “the great religions have always had a common attention to the human dimension of the economy.”

On April 1, 2009 — just a few days after the US stock market’s S&P index bottomed almost exactly at the peculiarly evocative number of 666 and started to rise again (the market bottom was in March 2009, not in October 2008) — the Vatican daily even went so far as to print an article suggesting that the Islamic banking system may help to overcome global crisis.

The article said Western banks should look at the ethical rules of Islamic finance to restore confidence amongst their clients at a time of global economic crisis.

“The ethical principles on which Islamic finance is based may bring banks closer to their clients and to the true spirit which should mark every financial service,” the article said.

Author Loretta Napoleoni and Abaxbank Spa fixed income strategist Claudia Segre said in the article that “Western banks could use tools such as the Islamic bonds, known as sukuk, as collateral.”

Chaotic times create strange bedfellows…

In this context, it is interesting to go back to an important talk delivered by Cardinal Ratzinger in 1985, published in the theological journal Communio the following year.

The essence of the article — for those who are weary of reading — is this (I bold-face this passage below):

“In order to find solutions that will truly lead us forward, new economic ideas will be necessary,” Cardinal Ratzinger said then. “But such measures do not seem conceivable or, above all, practicable without new moral impulses.”

In short, we need justice to face our economic mess. Justice is the key to our economic future. Justice must be the top priority of all those who attempt to unwind this very complicated and dangerous financial crisis.

Here is the complete text of Ratzinger’s 1985 talk. I note that, as the talk was given in 1985, the Soviet Union had not yet fallen, and this influenced Ratzinger’s perspective on a still-living Marxism, which he analyzes with some care:

Market Economy and Ethics

Article presented in 1985 in a symposium in Rome, “Church and Economy in Dialogue” (1)

by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger (2)

Allow me to give a cordial welcome — also in the name of the two other protectors, Cardinal Höffner and Cardinal Etchegaray — to all the participants here present for the Symposium on Church and Economy. I am very glad that the cooperation between the Pontifical Council for the Laity, the International Federation of Catholic Universities, the Institute of the German Economy and the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation, has made possible these world-wide conversations on a question of deep concern for all of us.

The economic inequality between the northern and southern hemispheres of the globe is becoming more and more an inner threat to the cohesion of the human family. The danger for our future from such a threat may be no less real than that proceeding from the weapons arsenals with which the East and the West oppose one another.

New exertions must be made to overcome this tension, since all methods employed hitherto have proven themselves inadequate. In fact, the misery in the world has increased in shocking measure during the last thirty years. In order to find solutions that will truly lead us forward, new economic ideas will be necessary. But such measures do not seem conceivable or, above all, practicable without new moral impulses. It is at this point that a dialogue between Church and economy becomes both possible and necessary.

Let me clarify somewhat the exact point in question. At first glance, precisely in terms of classical economic theory, it is not obvious what the Church and the economy should actually have to do with one another, aside from the fact that the Church owns businesses and so is a factor in the market. The Church should not enter into dialogue here as a mere component in the economy, but rather in its own right as Church.

Here, however, we must face the objection raised especially after the Second Vatican Council, that the autonomy of specialized realms is to be respected above all. Such an objection holds that the economy ought to play by its own rules and not according to moral considerations imposed on it from without. Following the tradition inaugurated by Adam Smith , this position holds that the market is incompatible with ethics because voluntary “moral” actions contradict market rules and drive the moralizing entrepreneur out of the game. (3)

For a long time, then, business ethics rang like hollow metal because the economy was held to work on efficiency and not on morality. (4) The market’s inner logic should free us precisely from the necessity of having to depend on the morality of its participants. The true play of market laws best guarantees progress and even distributive justice.

The great successes of this theory concealed its limitations for a long time. But now in a changed situation, its tacit philosophical presuppositions and thus its problems become clearer. Although this position admits the freedom of individual businessmen, and to that extent can be called liberal, it is in fact deterministic in its core. It presupposes that the free play of market forces can operate in one direction only, given the constitution of man and the world, namely, toward the self-regulation of supply and demand, and toward economic efficiency and progress.

This determinism, in which man is completely controlled by the binding laws of the market while believing he acts in freedom from them, includes yet another and perhaps even more astounding presupposition, namely, that the natural laws of the market are in essence good (if I may be permitted so to speak) and necessarily work for the good, whatever may be true of the morality of individuals.

These two presuppositions are not entirely false, as the successes of the market economy illustrate.

But neither are they universally applicable and correct, as is evident in the problems of today’s world economy.

“Governed by economic laws, but also by men”

Without developing the problem in its details here — which is not my task — let me merely underscore a sentence of Peter Koslowski’s that illustrates the point in question: “The economy is governed not only by economic laws, but is also determined by men…”. (5)

Even if the market economy does rest on the ordering of the individual within a determinate network of rules, it cannot make man superfluous or exclude his moral freedom from the world of economics. It is becoming ever so clear that the development of the world economy has also to do with the development of the world community and with the universal family of man, and that the development of the spiritual powers of mankind is essential in the development of the world community.

These spiritual powers are themselves a factor in the economy: the market rules function only when a moral consensus exists and sustains them.

If I have attempted so far to point to the tension between a purely liberal model of the economy and ethical considerations, and thereby to circumscribe a first set of questions, I must now point out the opposite tension.

The question about market and ethics has long ceased to be merely a theoretical problem. Since the inherent inequality of various individual economic zones endangers the free play of the market, attempts at restoring the balance have been made since the 1950s by means of development projects. It can no longer be overlooked that these attempts have failed and have even intensified the existing inequality.

The result is that broad sectors of the Third World, which at first looked forward to development aid with great hopes, now identify the ground of their misery in the market economy, which they see as a system of exploitations, as institutionalised sin and injustice. For them, the centralized economy appears to be the moral alternative, toward which one turns with a directly religious fervor, and which virtually becomes the content of religion.

For while the market economy rests on the beneficial effect of egoism and its automatic limitation through competing egoisms, the thought of just control seems to predominate in a centralized economy, where the goal is equal rights for all and proportionate distribution of goods to all. The examples adduced thus far are certainly not encouraging, but the hope that one could, nonetheless, bring this moral project to fruition is also not thereby refuted. It seems that if the whole were to be attempted on a stronger moral foundation, it should be possible to reconcile morality and efficiency in a society not oriented toward maximum profit, but rather to self-restraint and common service.

Thus in this area, the argument between economics and ethics is becoming ever more an attack on the market economy and its spiritual foundations, in favor of a centrally controlled economy, which is believed now to receive its moral grounding.

The full extent of this question becomes even more apparent when we include the third element of economic and theoretical considerations characteristic of today’s situation: the Marxist world. In terms of the structure of its economic theory and praxis, the Marxist system as a centrally administered economy is a radical antithesis to the market economy. (6)

Salvation is expected because there is no private control of the means of production, because supply and demand are not brought into harmony through market competition, because there is no place for private profit seeking, and because all regulations proceed from a central economic administration.

Yet, in spite of this radical opposition in the concrete economic mechanisms, there are also points in common in the deeper philosophical presuppositions.

The first of these consists in the fact that Marxism, too, is deterministic in nature and that it too promises a perfect liberation as the fruit of this determinism. For this reason, it is a fundamental error to suppose that a centralized economic system is a moral system in contrast to the mechanistic system of the market economy.

This becomes clearly visible, for example, in Lenin’s acceptance of Sombart’s thesis that there is in Marxism no grain of ethics, but only economic laws. (7)

Indeed, determinism is here far more radical and fundamental than in liberalism: for at least the latter recognizes the realm of the subjective and considers it as the place of the ethical. The former, on the other hand, totally reduces becoming and history to economy, and the delimitation of one’s own subjective realm appears as resistance to the laws of history, which alone are valid, and as a reaction against progress, which cannot be tolerated. Ethics is reduced to the philosophy of history, and the philosophy of history degenerates into party strategy.

But let us return once again to the common points in the philosophical foundations of Marxism and capitalism taken strictly. The second point in common — as will already have been clear in passing — consists in the fact that determinism includes the renunciation of ethics as an independent entity relevant to the economy.

This shows itself in an especially dramatic way in Marxism. Religion is traced back to economics as the reflection of a particular economic system and thus, at the same time, as an obstacle to correct knowledge, to correct action — as an obstacle to progress, at which the natural laws of history aim.

It is also presupposed that history, which takes its course from the dialectic of negative and positive, must, of its inner essence and with no further reasons being given, finally end in total positivity. That the Church can contribute nothing positive to the world economy on such a view is clear; its only significance for economics is that it must be overcome. That it can be used temporarily as a means for its own self-destruction and thus as an instrument for the “positive forces of history” is an ‘insight’ that has only recently surfaced. Obviously, it changes nothing in the fundamental thesis.

For the rest, the entire system lives in fact from the apotheosis of the central administration in which the world spirit itself would have to be at work, if this thesis were correct. That this is a myth in the worst sense of the word is simply an empirical statement that is being continually verified. And thus precisely the radical renunciation of a concrete dialogue between Church and economy which is presupposed by this thought becomes a confirmation of its necessity.

In the attempt to describe the constellation of a dialogue between Church and economy , I have discovered yet a fourth aspect. It may be seen in the well-known remark made by Theodore Roosevelt in 1912: “I believe that the assimilation of the Latin-American countries to the United States will be long and difficult as long as these countries remain Catholic.”

Along the same lines, in a lecture in Rome in 1969, Rockefeller recommended replacing the Catholics there with other Christians (8) — an undertaking which, as is well known, is in full swing. In both these remarks, religion — here a Christian denomination — is presupposed as a socio-political, and hence as an economic-political factor, which is fundamental for the development of political structures and economic possibilities.

This reminds one of Max Weber’s thesis about the inner connection between capitalism and Calvinism , between the formation of the economic order and the determining religious idea. Marx’s notion seems to be almost inverted: it is not the economy that produces religious notions, but the fundamental religious orientation that decides which economic system can develop.

The notion that only Protestantism can bring forth a free economy — whereas Catholicism includes no corresponding education to freedom and to the self-discipline necessary to it, favoring authoritarian systems instead — is doubtless even today still very widespread, and much in recent history seems to speak for it. On the other hand, we can no longer regard so naively the liberal-capitalistic system (even with all the corrections it has since received) as the salvation of the world. We are no longer in the Kennedy-era, with its Peace Corps optimism; the Third World’s questions about the system may be partial, but they are not groundless. A self-criticism of the Christian confessions with respect to political and economic ethics is the first requirement.

But this cannot proceed purely as a dialogue within the Church. It will be fruitful only if it is conducted with those Christians who manage the economy. A long tradition has led them to regard their Christianity as a private concern, while as members of the business community they abide by the laws of the economy.

These realms have come to appear mutually exclusive in the modern context of the separation of the subjective and objective realms. But the whole point is precisely that they should meet, preserving their own integrity and yet inseparable. It is becoming an increasingly obvious fact of economic history that the development of economic systems which concentrate on the common good depends on a determinate ethical system, which in turn can be born and sustained only by strong religious convictions. (9)

Conversely, it has also become obvious that the decline of such discipline can actually cause the laws of the market to collapse. An economic policy that is ordered not only to the good of the group — indeed, not only to the common good of a determinate state — but to the common good of the family of man demands a maximum of ethical discipline and thus a maximum of religious strength.

The political formation of a will that employs the inherent economic laws towards this goal appears, in spite of all humanitarian protestations, almost impossible today.

It can only be realized if new ethical powers are completely set free.

A morality that believes itself able to dispense with the technical knowledge of economic laws is not morality but moralism. As such it is the antithesis of morality.

A scientific approach that believes itself capable of managing without an ethos misunderstands the reality of man. Therefore it is not scientific.

Today we need a maximum of specialized economic understanding, but also a maximum of ethos so that specialized economic understanding may enter the service of the right goals. Only in this way will its knowledge be both politically practicable and socially tolerable.


[1] This article, translated by Stephen Wentworth Arndt, is provided courtesy of Dr. Johannes Stemmler, secretary emeritus of the BKU (Federation of Catholic Entrepreneurs) and secretary of Ordo socialis in Köln, Germany. This article appeared previously in English under the title “Church and economy: Responsibility for the future of the world economy,” Communio 13, no. 3 (Fall 1986): 199-204 [PDF].

[2] Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger is Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

[3] Cf. Peter Koslowski, “Über Notwendigkeit und Möglichkeit einer Wirtschaftsethik,” Scheidewege. Jahresschrift für skeptisches Denken 15 (1985/86): 301, 204–305. This fundamental study has given me essential suggestions for my own paper.

[Ed. note: This paper, “On the Necessity and Possibility of an Ethics of the Economy,” is further elaborated and available in English in the book by P. Koslowski, Ethics of Capitalism; and, Critique of Sociobiology: Two Essays with a Comment by James M. Buchanan, vol. 10, Studies in Economic Ethics and Philosophy (New York: Springer-Verlag, 1996), with the 6th German edition 1998, along with Spanish, Korean, Russian, Chinese, and Japanese translations.]

[4] Koslowski, “Über Notwendigkeit und Möglichkeit einer Wirtschaftsethik,” 294.

[5] Koslowski, “Über Notwendigkeit und Möglichkeit einer Wirtschaftsethik,” 304; cf. 301.

[6] Cf. Card. J. Höffner, Wirtschaftsordnung und Wirtschaftsethik. Richtlinien der katholischen Soziallehre, ed. Sekretariat der Deutschen Bischofskonferenz (Bonn, 1985), 34–44. The English translation of this paper was published by Ordo socialis: Economic Systems and Economic Ethics–Guidelines in Catholic Social Teaching (Association for the Advancement of Christian Social Sciences, 1986).

[7] Koslowski, “Über Notwendigkeit und Möglichkeit einer Wirtschaftsethik,” 296, with reference to Lenin, Werke (Berlin, 1971), I 436.

[8] I found these two considerations in the contribution of A. Metalli, “La grande epopea degli evangelici,” Trenta giorni 3, no. 8 (1984): 9, 8–20.

[9] For detailed information see P. Koslowski, “Religion, Okonomie, Ethik. Eine sozialtheoretische und ontologische Analyse ihres Zusammenhangs,“ in Die religiöse Dimension der Gesellschaft, Religion und ihre Theorien, ed. P. Koslowski (Tübingen, 1985), 76–96.

[Ed. note: This paper, “Religion, Economics, Ethics: An Analysis of Their Relationship from the Perspective of Social Thought and Ontology,” in The Religious Dimension of Society: Religion and its Theories, is further elaborated and available in English in the book by P. Koslowski, Principles of Ethical Economy, vol. 17, Issues in Business Ethics (Boston: Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2001), with a 2nd German edition in 1994 along with French, Russian, Chinese, and Spanish translations.]

This article may be found on the internet at:



Prayer for the Holy Guardian Angels Feast Day October 2

Dear Angel at my side, my good and loyal friend, you have been with me since the moment I was born.

You are my own personal guardian, given me by God as my guide and protector, and you will stay with me till I die. He who created you and me gave me to you as your particular charge.

You assisted in great joy at my baptism, when I became part of the Mystical Body of Christ, and was made a member of the household of God and an heir of heaven.

You saw the dangers that beset my path, and, if I sinned, it was in spite of you.

You envied me when Christ came to me in Holy Communion. Even though you probably were there among the angels that adored Him the night that He was born, you have not been able to receive Him as I can.

O, help me to appreciate these gifts! Help me to realize, as you do, with every fiber of my being, that to serve Christ is to be a King!

Help me steadfastly to avoid evil and do good and always guard my soul from sin. Protect me as well from physical evils as I go about my daily work. You will be with me all my life, and at the hour of my death.

Help me to face death bravely, patiently, with great love of God, knowing that it is only through death that I can come to Him in heaven! Then, come with me to my Judge, and when the hour of my salvation comes, take me home to my Father, God. Amen.

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