Summmer 1983, Vol. 35, No. 2, pp. 155-169.

Donald Goergen:
      Current Trends: From Social Doctrine to Gospel Values and Signs of the Times

Father Goergen, OR, is currently engaged in research and writing in the field of Christology.

MARIE-DOMINIQUE Chenu, O.P., a French theologian, is a specialist in the history of the twelfth century, in the thought of St. Thomas, and in the dialogue between theology and contemporary socioeconomic developments.(1) In 1979, in a work entitled La "doctrine sociale" de l'église comme idéologie (The "Social Doctrine" of the Church as Ideology), he reviewed the development of Catholic social thought from Leo XIII to Paul VI.(2) Given the inseparable connection between spirituality and social responsibility, I am setting out to summarize his observations.

Father Chenu makes the point that the expression social doctrine is used in two different but related senses. More precisely, the expression refers to papal teaching as manifested in the "social encyclicals" from Leo XIII through Pius XII. Pope John and Vatican Council II developed a wider meaning for social doctrine, namely, the social teaching of the Gospels, with explicit reference to the Gospels, a reference that was not true of the "social encyclicals."(3) Chenu suggests the need for a more conscious awareness of this development and its significance. The social doctrine of the pre- Vatican II encyclicals had an ideological character.

Another major element in the "new meaning" is that it reflects a theological development, a particular theology of the church in the world, a new theological method in the church, a Copernican revolution in ecclesiology, all within the official teaching of the church.

Today we have difficulty appreciating the shock produced in May, 1891, by Leo XIII's promulgation of Rerum novarum. Its first words were about "new realities." Leo XIII had become aware of a change in the world, particularly in the working world. He saw religion as a principle of order but also as a ferment of the gospel. Individual generosity was not the answer to the unjust misery of the workers. We may see an insufficiency in the way he posed the problems, but we ought also see a boldness which aroused both enthusiasm and resistance. By what right did the pope claim intervention in a domain concerned with the production of goods, the management of business, and the technical complexity of industrial society?

It is the teaching of the church that the proclamation of the gospel concerns individuals but also ought to penetrate the spheres of interpersonal relations, social structures, and political governments. One ought not read into Leo XIII a theocratic tendency, yet at that time "social Catholicism" did represent a conception of Christianity which not only claimed its right to witness but also a power over secular structures, a social order emanating from the kingship of Christ.

The role of the state in the economy was one of the most worked-over sections in the encyclical. The first draft looked favorably upon state intervention; there is a primacy to the common good for which the state is responsible. The collective end of earthly goods is the supreme norm for all private property (a position solidly founded upon the teaching of Thomas Aquinas). But the fear of socialism led the pope to soften the principle. Restricting it led to subjective moral remedies prevailing over the reform of structures, the generosity of fraternal charity over the obligations of justice. The "will of God" became a comfort for the establishment and nourished a conservative spirituality. Thus the encyclical sustained an ideology. Preaching resignation obstructed the denunciation of the social sin of the world. The "social doctrine" of the church was emptied of its substance and became only Christian generosity. A text finds its real significance in the social practice which its ideology puts to work. It is thus impossible to provide a balance sheet for the effects of Rerum novarum. The currents of thought and action derived from its position point not only to disparate effects but also to an innovation in the church in relation to the world. But it did not lead to a structural analysis of the causes of the distress of the working class.


When Pius XI entitled his encyclical Quadragesimo anno on the fortieth anniversary of Leo XIII's Rerum Novarum, it was with a sense of continuity in mind. At the same time, he recognized new elements which demanded further development. During that forty year period there had been continuing criticism of Leo's encyclical. In addition, the modernist crisis echoed in the social scene. Catholics engaged in the development of social structures were suspected of "social and political modernism." The openings introduced by Leo XIII met with suspicion during the papacy of Pius X, whose understanding of Catholic Action implied a totalitarian ecclesiology both with respect to the church's internal life and with respect to the involvement of Christians in economic and social issues.

Pius XI refounded Catholic Action on the model of a centralized organization under clerical tutelage. But at the same time, the centralization was reduced by the emergence of specialized movements, for example, the Young Christian Workers founded in Belgium in 1925. Pius XI declared that the Young Christian Workers were a type of Catholic Action, which was one of the major concerns of his pontificate. But the enterprise took an unforeseen development, including strategy which did not originate from on high but from a concrete situation -- in the end, a new conception of a church starting from below. Some detected, an implicit assent to class struggle, which was condemned in official doctrine. The new type of Catholic Action eventually transformed the theoretical way of formulating social doctrine. One only begins to see the new way in Quadragesimo anno, which remained attached to former categories.

Pius XI defined organized Catholic Action as "participation in the hierarchical apostolate of the church." The faithful were placed under the bishops in a way that completed the bishops' own ministry. The juridical counterpart of this concept became the faithful's reception of a "mandate"; Catholic Action is still linked to a clerically dominated ecclesiology in which the church thinks of its actions in terms of organizations created and managed by the hierarchy, face to face with a secular society whose influence it counterbalances. But the more Catholics involved themselves in the social structures of the world itself, the more the definition "participation in the hierarchical apostolate" appeared rigid. Not until Vatican II was it fully recognized that the Christian mission to the world was rooted in baptism and confirmation and derived directly from Christ. A mandate was not necessary.

Two other elements modified and enriched the new encyclical. It recorded the development which had taken place in the industrial world (99f.).(4) The economic order was no longer a peasant world more solicitous for stability than for progress; now there was a concentration of large enterprises and a multiplication of human relations. Thus there emerged the perception of the aspirations and needs of a new class. Secondly, Pius XI was conscious of the political implications of fraternal love. For it he created the expression political charity. The largest field for charity, or love, is that of political love to which no other love is superior except that of religion itself. From this flowed his judgment against the free running of the economic market and about the primacy of political power over economic power (88f.).

Quadragesimo anno was not simply a prolongation of the doctrine of Rerum novarum. It was concerned not only with the working world but also with the social and economic order as a whole. Under the term social justice Pius XI developed the classical theological position of the radically social character of the human person. It is not merely a question of regulating relationships among citizens (commutative justice) nor a question of the relationship of society to each of its citizens (distributive justice). Social justice is another species. The social whole is of another order than the sum of its members. This common good is not reducible to the sum of private goods and individual virtues. Social justice is a sovereign virtue which affects the thoughts, sentiments, and acts of citizens, submitting them all to its scrutiny. The analysis was rational, founded on the social nature of the human being, but also based on a demand of the gospel. The object of social justice was the common good which coordinates the two virtues of charity and justice. Mere trickery is any love, or charity, which does not take into account the objective rights of the other as proclaimed by justice and falls back upon the language of generosity.

The encyclical's fundamental intuition was admirable: faith plays a role in political life. Eventually the growing autonomy of the laity would take this beyond a "participation" in a hierarchical monopoly. When the Young Christian Workers in France adopted a socialist line apart from the ecclesiastical institution, a new stage was reached.

In order to understand the encyclicals of Leo XIII and Pius XI, one must place them in their proper historical and social contexts. Leo XIII devoted the first part of his encyclical to a condemnation of socialism. His opposition was based upon the understanding that he brought to socialism: it was the negation of private property. The pope supported his argument by going to the model of the peasant working the land -- having watered the soil with his sweat, he ought to be proprietor of it. To own land is a peasant's passion, and peasant values relate to the soil. The land both provides subsistence and nourishes one's spirit. One's social life is limited to the village or neighboring city. Leo XIII's concession to property absolutized this form of economic and social life. He did not base himself on the gospel but upon an economic analysis of rural society.

During the ninety years since then, we have passed from the era of coal to the era of electricity to the era of oil with the consequence that there has developed a system of production involving collective structures. Work is no longer an individualized operation in which each farms the land he owns; work is participation in the exploitation of accumulated riches. Christians have not understood the revolution introduced by industrialization. Nor did Leo XIII. The right to property will not assure the worker human dignity in an industrialized society. New forms of work have awakened among workers a knowledge of alienation, that is, a knowledge of no longer working for themselves but for others. This knowledge was the foundation for socialism.

Socialization of goods is the result of the traditional thesis concerning the common destiny of the goods of the earth. Leo XIII, in his praise of private property, collided with this principle (8), but not without problems from the Thomist context of the encyclical. He made an adaptation prevail which, according to St. Thomas, is not a natural right but only a means for rendering effective the collective destiny of goods, which is the primary principle.

Forty years later, in Quadragesimo anno, Pius XI is open to industrial civilization and speaks of "social justice" and the "common good." The entire third section of the encyclical analyzed the social and economic situation. This included the intolerable excesses of capitalism which result in the accumulation of economic power in the hands of a small number, although these excesses do not condemn capitalism in itself (101). Next the pope observed the evolution of socialism. He recorded the difference between two systems, communism (which he denounced) and socialism (which "approaches the truths which Christian tradition has always held sacred, for it cannot be denied that its demands at times come very near those that Christian reformers of society justly insist upon" [1131). In addition to Leo XIII's concern for private property, 'Pius XI recognized also the acute problem of class struggle and the part of the truth ignored by his predecessor, in particular the legitimacy of the collectivization of certain categories of goods which "cannot without danger to the general welfare be entrusted to private individuals" (114).


Could not Christians and socialists agree then on a middle course? Pius XI responded to this question rigidly: socialism and Catholicism are irreconcilable, even socialism in mitigated forms. "Religious socialism, Christian socialism are contradictory terms; no one can be at the same time a good Catholic and a true socialist" (120). One is surprised to see Pius XI, attentive to the evolution and diversity within socialism, recognizing the elements of truth in it, not make a more discriminating judgment.

Thirty years later (1963), John XXIII goes further. Pacem in terris had peace as its goal. The encyclical manifested a new climate in its address to "all people of good will." It envisioned relations between Catholics and non-Catholics in the economic, social, and political domains (157). Without making explicit mention of it, the relationship between socialism and Christianity is posed: "Again it is perfectly legitimate to make a clear distinction between a false philosophy of the nature, origin, and purpose of men and the world, and economic, social, cultural, and political undertakings, even when such undertakings draw their origin and inspiration from that philosophy . . . . Who can deny the possible existence of good and commendable elements in these undertakings, elements which do indeed conform to the dictates of right reason, and are an expression of man's lawful aspirations?" (159). John XXIII distinguishes between a doctrine, once fixed and formulated, which no longer changes, and movements which have as their object the concrete and changing conditions of life; thus he discerns the difference between social practice and theoretical systems, or ideologies. The text made a sensation; some interpreted it as a cancellation of the encyclical Divini Redemptoris (1937) of Pius XI against atheism. Yet it maintained the no to atheism, materialism, and Marxist ideology. But given the distinction between social practice and theoretical ideologies, the practical domain was opened up for dialogue, whatever the usefulness of systematic discussions would be. Christians involved in socioeconomic life must make their decisions by the virtue of prudence ad not by theoretical deductions.

Beginning with the texts of the Second Vatican Council, one see the foundations for a new ecclesiology. To this Paul VI byre the greatest witness in his letter to Cardinal Roy, Octogesima adveniens, published for the eightieth anniversary of Rerum novarum. (1971).(5) Paul VI elaborated the developments since Leo XIII (5-21), returned to the great text of John XXIII (30), observed the historical changes within Marxism (32-34), and explicated directives for Christians who are attracted by socialist currents within which they recognize some of their own aspirations (31, 36, 42-52). He recognized within Marxism varied elements and levels, recognized within socialism the global aspirations for justice and solidarity. In service to the search for justice, but without endorsement of Marxist ideology, he consented to a Marxist analysis for interpreting economic and social conditions. Thus we come to realize that one can no longer refer only to an abstract social doctrine, received from authority, but rather must refer to a social practice inspired by the gospel and consciously participating in the construction of the world.

In the encyclical Divini Redemptoris (1937), Pius XI had taken the position that Marxism was "intrinsically perverse." The formula was shocking. But, as Paul VI later observed, Marxism itself had undergone historical development. Diverse tendencies had confronted each other in their respective interpretations of the thought of the founder. The Vatican council had refused to use the formula of Pius XI and instead fixed the content of it into a condemnation of atheism and materialism. It also refused to ratify the 1945 decree of the Holy Office forbidding Christians access to the sacraments who consciously and freely belonged to the Communist party.

If we want to understand why both the value and limitations of socialism have been so slowly perceived by the church, we must realize that the phenomenon of socialization was resisted by Christians even before socialism became its ideology. The resistance was due to several reasons: inattentiveness to the passage from the tool to the machine, lack of appreciation of the effects of industrialization, absolutization of the person as a supreme value, an angelism which did not adapt itself to social materialism. John XXIII became the first to perceive good in socialization. Pius XII, who saw the advantages of social interdependence for building up the mystical body of Christ (Mystici corporis) denounced firmly the perils of socialization. He wrote: "It is necessary to prevent the person and the family from letting itself be led along into the abyss where the socialization of all things threatens to lead them . . . . With its last energy the church will wage this battle where there are at stake the supreme values: dignity of the person and eternal salvation of souls. It is thus that the insistence of Catholic social doctrine, notably on the right of private property, is explained."(6) Thus an ideology, or an anti-ideology, prevented an understanding of the movement of history. Pius XII was not nondiscriminate with respect to the evils of capitalism. Yet the confrontation of the cold war (1950-56) contributed to his maintaining, during the second period of his reign, suspicion toward "Christian progressives" seduced by Marxist ideology (decree against all collaboration with Communist parties, 1949). Not until John XIII's encyclical Mater et magistra (1961) did the word socialization enter the official vocabulary of the church. A long section was dedicated to its evaluation (59-62).

At the same time, Francois Perroux, in a colloquium on African socialism (1962), observed that, under the word socialization, it was important to distinguish four categories of phenomena: the multiplication of the social relationships of individuals and groups, subordination to a general or collective interest, programming for important groups of the population, and social organization being stretched to favor the rise of the poor. And Perroux added: the first three can be present equally in a capitalist as well as a socialist regime, but the fourth is present only in a socialist regime. That is to say that the gospel of the poor finds favorable soil there.


Pacem in terris (1963) was addressed explicitly to the entire world and treated the problems of war and peace. The encyclical attempted to discern "the signs of the times," to discover evangelical values within the social transformation of humankind (30-43, 57-59, 75-79, 126-129, 142-145). This was a new category, an evangelical one, taking into account Matt. 16:1-4, where Jesus rebukes the Pharisees and Sadducees for their blindness before the "signs." John XXIII, however, presented signs which announced resources for the reign of God: economic and social promotion of the working classes; the entrance of women into public life; juridical organization of political communities; organizations endowed with an international role in the economic, social, cultural, educational spheres; and, globally, the phenomenon of socialization at all levels. The step taken in Pacem in terris did not proceed from a preestablished, magisterially taught doctrine but from an analysis of concrete situations in the social process, the implications of which included an appeal to evangelical values.

Vatican Council II, in Gaudium et spes, took up the expression signs of the times and developed it, recognizing in discernment of the signs of the times the typical activity of the Christian engaged in building up the world (4, 11, 44, with variations of vocabulary coming from different redactions).(7) The initiative of John XXIII became the definition of the presence of the Christian in the world. The expression signs of the times is then frequently taken up in official documents, in particular by Paul VI. Presence in the world becomes part of the structure of the church. The word of God does not give us a practical guide for building up the world, a "politics drawn from Scripture," but rather reveals to us the significance of the world, its becoming, and our vocation as co-creators. The tone of the texts of Pope John, as much as his personality, manifested a new style for the church -- no longer doctrinal imperatives pregnant with clericalism, but a warm appeal to the gospel implied in human experience, a church of witness, not of power.

Among the signs of the times, gospel seeds, John XXIII had insisted upon the economic and political awareness of the Third World. At the council, the bishops of the Third World proposed establishing an ecclesial organism for promoting justice. Thus the Justice and Peace Commission was established in 1967 to promote the progress of the poorer nations and social justice among nations. This was the setting for Paul VI's encyclical Populorum progressio (1967). Paul VI wrote: "So today we earnestly urge all to pool their ideas and their activities for humankind's complete development and the development of all humankind" (5). The encyclical was not presented as an economic or political program, which is not within the competence of the church, but as an evangelical proclamation. The church was not pretending to organize society around a Christian model. The word social doctrine was not used. It was a question of "shedding the light of the Gospel on contemporary social questions" (2). Worldwide solidarity was the object of the encyclical. "The social question ties all people together, in every part of the world" (3). The encyclical reflected the catholicity of the church which had, prior to this, enclosed itself within Western civilization. The "missions," formerly adjuncts to established Christianity, were more recognized.

Analysis indicated that the conversion of individuals was not sufficient; it is necessary to transform structures. "We especially wish to underline that there are structures themselves which ought to be changed.(8) There still remained a vestige of an appeal to the goodwill of the powerful and to the generosity of the rich; yet the encyclical escaped the reformist illusion. It condemned a system built on "profit as the chief spur to economic progress, free competition as the guiding norm of economics, and private ownership of the means of production as an absolute right .... Such improper manipulations of economic forces can never be condemned enough; let it be said once again that economics is supposed to be in the service of humankind" (26). And: "The right to private property is not absolute and unconditional. No one may appropriate surplus goods solely for his or her private use when others lack the bare necessities of life" (23). Thus Paul VI recognized the traditional thesis of the universal destiny of goods which Leo XIII had more or less diverted in order to spare the right of private property.

In Octogesima adveniens (4), eighty years after Rerum novarum, Paul VI wrote:

In the face of such widely varying situations it is difficult for us to utter a unified message and to put forward a solution which has universal validity. Such is not our ambition, nor is it our mission. It is up to the Christian communities to analyze with objectivity the situation which is proper to their own country, to shed on it the light of the Gospel's unalterable words and to draw principles of reflection, norms of judgment and directives for action from the social teaching of the Church.
In these words Paul VI presented a declaration which was in continuity with the church's social teaching but which also reversed the method employed for that teaching: no longer "social doctrine" taught with a view to application to changing situations, but situations themselves as theological sources for reading the signs of the times; no longer deduction, but induction. From now on pluralism will not only result from the diversity of situations for Christians in the world; it will be a principle flowing from the very nature of the church which is defined by its presence in the world and not as a reality absolute in its institutional identity.
In the face of so many new questions the Church makes an effort to reflect in order to give an answer, in its own sphere, to people's expectations. If today the problems seem original in their breadth and their urgency, are we without the means of solving them? It is with all its dynamism that the social teaching of the Church accompanies humankind in its search. If it does not intervene to authenticate a given structure or to propose a ready-made model, it does not thereby limit itself to recalling general principles. It develops through reflection applied to the changing situations of this world, under the driving force of the Gospel as the source of renewal when its message is accepted in its totality and with all its demands. It also develops with the sensitivity proper to the Church which is characterized by a disinterested will to serve and by attention to the poorest. (42)

Note that the church accompanies the search, not with a prefabricated model, but in contact with the varied situations in the world. Given this strategy of presence in the world, the first law is that of discernment (John XXIII) among the concrete movements of history and the ideologies which are the interpretations of them (30, 36). Paul VI, using the word ideology in its customary pejorative sense, disputed the reigning ideologies. He observed the legitimate attractiveness of the socialists to Christians searching for a more just society. In recording the evolution of Marxism, Paul VI asked Christians to distinguish its diverse aspects, particularly its method of social analysis and the distinction between theory and practice, but also to mark well the close connection, in order to recognize the type of totalitarian society to which socialism led (32-34). Capitalism was also submitted to an analogous criticism; it ought not any longer be idealized. Its proclamation of the autonomy of the individual proceeds from false philosophy (35).

In the service of this discernment, two new resources are borrowed from secular culture. First, the reference to utopia as a factor for creativity. Utopia can be a facile alibi allowing one to withdraw from the tough daily tasks, but it also promotes the imagination (37). Second, recourse to the human sciences, for a longtime suspect. Undoubtedly one does not assimilate these without caution, yet they are opportunely effective for measuring the psychological, sociological, historical, and linguistic conditions of human life in society, and thus the life of Christian communities (40). This call to the new disciplines imposes a retrospective critique on the processes previously used, according to which one understood the applications of the gospel to particular situations as permanent. It is necessary, rather, to control the tendency to absolutize such applications under the category of natural law (for example, the right to property). Paul VI's letter sanctions a method already practiced by the encyclicals Mater et magistra and Populorum progessio but not yet erected into a principle. The letter removes itself from "ideology."


Words have a history. Chenu's reading of the texts has led us to observe the use of the expression social doctrine, not in the general sense of a Christianity which admits a sociopolitical dimension, but in the precise sense used by the ordinary magisterium from Leo XIII to John XXIII. After seventy years this expression is eliminated in official discourse. Still frequently employed in Mater et magistra (1961), it is absent from Pacem in terris (1963) and excluded from the conciliar constitution Gaudium et spes. The substitute for it is social teaching of the gospel. In the vocabulary of the council, social doctrine was used in several places in the general sense. But at several points the expression was contested. In the formulation of Gaudium et spes, it was asked that social doctrine be replaced by Christian doctrine on human society in order to avoid the stereotyped formula.(9)

The concept of a social doctrine in the narrow sense makes sociocultural categories, which actually reflect a determined geographical and historical situation, to be universal. To return to Paul VI in his letter to Cardinal Roy, a prefabricated model and abstract principles look for application by deduction, rather than measuring themselves against the concrete realities of collective existence. This was the cause of the mediocre efficacy of the teaching of the popes, who complained of inattention and negligence on the part of the Christians. But lukewarmness was not the cause. Rather, it was the method itself, with its psychological and sociological unrealism. This was also the cause of the ambiguities in the solutions. They were idealized and universalized from local and temporary situations, for example, references to peasant life, preindustrial civilization, precapitalist customs, etc.

There was an image of God behind this idealization -- a God who has eternally established constitutive laws for the order of the world, who governs by his providence, to which passive human beings are docile. This "Deism" in which the gospel is neutralized had been the ideology of the nineteenth-century bourgeoisie. On the contrary, in recent texts, the call to the message of the gospel is given as the motive for Christian involvement, much more than the demands of the natural law or of a perennial philosophy. The reign of God is realized in history, in which new events are not simply superfluous. The total liberation of Christ is mediated in partial historical liberations. Thus it is necessary to refuse an abstract theology which provokes ideological caution among those who hold economic and political power and who endeavor to maintain the status quo.

One ought, then, observe the ambiguity in the constant recourse of the ecclesiastical magisterium to the "natural law" in order to elaborate a social doctrine. To be sure, the laws of nature exist and the church is not without competence in their regard. The hopes raised in recent years by "human rights" manifest "natural rights." But, with a certain type of clerical conscience, this notion included an extrapolation into divine reason and eternal law. Christian life, rather, makes direct reference to the word of God and begins with experience. Not an ethics of natural law, but a theology of incarnation! The "theologies of liberation" are not constructed n the dossiers of the "social doctrine."

It is not a question, then, of the church's proposing a preestablished model, a third way ideologically between the capitalist and communist regimes. Such a conception establishes the church as a regime competitive with human societies under the illusion of being able to present to the specialists of social problems a system of irrefutable solutions. In this approach one can recognize the fundamental approach of ideologies, among which now there can also be classed an ideology flowing from Christian inspiration. The theology of the people of God, on the other hand, introduced in the second chapter of Lumen gentium, is the Copernican revolution of contemporary Christian ecclesiology. With it one has situated the church into an historical perspective and into an ecclesiology of communion. On this basis there is opened up the possibility, even urgency, of going beyond the phase of "social doctrine" and replacing it by a reflection on the relationship between the history of salvation and human history, renouncing the temptation of competition with civil society and the pretension of being engaged in a technical discourse on social developments.

The problem is to be resolved by a method different from that of "social doctrine," namely, by prophetic discernment of the "signs of the times." Signs of the times -- the expression signifies the efforts of Christians in their hermeneutics of society and describes the new awareness of the church in its relationship to the unfolding of history. Instead of searching to apply a general doctrine to particular cases, attention is given to reading history in order to discern in certain events their symbolic value. To perceive the evangelical sense of these events is not to abstract them from their earthly reality, for in their earthly reality they are signs. The promotion of the peoples of the Third World, their liturgy and their theology, is but one example. To read the signs of the times is to be provoked to action; and, at the same time, one reads them only because one simultaneously acts. This is the test of Christian realism, according to which one "does the truth" (John). Faith is not an ideology.

  1. Some of his major works include: Faith and Theology (New York: The Macmillan Co., 1968), a one volume condensation of his two volume La Parole de Dieu; Nature, Man and Society in the Twelfth Century (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1968), a major collection of essays on one of Chenu's foremost specialties; St. Thomas d'Aquin et la théologie (Paris: Seuil, 1957), for the Maîtres Spirituels series; Toward Understanding St. Thomas (Chicago: Regnery, 1964), perhaps his best known work on St. Thomas and how to read him. An extensive bibliography of the works of Chenu, including 355 entries, can be found in Mélanges offerts à M.-D. Chenu (Paris: Librarie Philosophique J. Vrin, 1967), pp. 9-29. For further information on his life, see Jacques Duquesne interroge le Père Chenu, un théologien en liberté (Paris: Editions du Centurion, 1975).
  2. (Paris: Editions du Cerf, 1979).
  3. The question of how John Paul II uses the expression remains open. Chenu's analysis goes only up to the pontificate of John Paul II and does not include it.
  4. Paragraph numbers in the text refer to the encyclicals as presented in The Papal Encyclicals, 5 vols., ed. Claudia Carlen (Wilmington, North Carolina: McGrath Publishing Co., 1981). See footnotes for sources of documents which are not encyclicals.
  5. In The Gospel of Peace and Justice, ed. Joseph Gremillion (Maryknoll, N.Y.: Orbis Books, 1976), pp. 485ff.
  6. Radio message, 14 September 1952. See Chenu, La "doctrine social," p. 59.
  7. In The Gospel of Peace and Justice, ed. Gremillion, pp. 243ff.
  8. Statement of the representative of the Holy Office to the CNUCED in Santiago, Chili, May, 1972. See Chenu, La "doctrine social," p. 72.
  9. Cf. Gaudium et spes, 23. This was also true of 76, but through an unfortunate misunderstanding the secretary of the council permitted its restoration after the promulgation of the text; hence its use in 76.