Saturday, December 17, 2011

A Christian Approach to Politics

"Thus the first service to politics rendered by the Christian faith is that it liberates man from the irrationality of political myths, which are the real threat of our time.Taking a stand for sobriety, which does what is possible and does not cry with an ardent heart for the impossible, is of course always difficult; the voice of reason is not as loud as the cry of unreason. The cry of the grandiose project has the cachet of morality; restricting one's self to what is possible, in contrast, seems to be the renunciation of moral passion, mere faint-hearted pragmatism. But as a matter of fact, political morality consists in precisely of resisting the seductive force of the big words for which humanity and its chances are being gambled away. The moral thing is not adventurous moralism, which tries to mind God's business, but rather honesty which accepts man's limits and does man's work with them. Not the uncompromising stance, but compromise is the true morality in political matters."
- from the book, Church, Ecumenism, and Politics: New Endeavors in Ecclesiology, by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict XVI), pp144-145.

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