Has GKC made a difference in your life?
HELP THE SOCIETY OF GILBERT KEITH CHESTERTON DEMONSTRATE THE WORLDWIDE DEVOTION TO CHESTERTON BY LIGHTING A CANDLE AND ADDING YOUR PERSONAL TESTIMONY.
Date and time information can be found at the bottom of this post. Note that we have changed the date of this meeting from our first announcement; we will now be meeting on February 14th!
A nice follow up to Rerum Novarum is Quadregesimo Anno (On the Reconstruction of the Social Order, Encyclical Letter of His Holiness, Pope Pius XI, given to mark the fortieth anniversary of Pope Leo XIII's seminal letter) - 15 May 1931.
[Alternate Source] [PDF]
In 1926, out of the efforts of G.K.'s Weekly to promote and defend Distributism, a "League for Distributism" was formed. Worth taking a look at is the following mission statement as printed in G.K.'s Weekly the same year.
Noteworthy especially is the language in the first line regarding the "twin evils of Capitalism and Socialism," to which phrase (from 1926) we can compare with paragraph 46 of Quadregesimo Anno issued five years later, where the Pontiff speaks of "twin rocks of shipwreck [that] must be carefully avoided," namely "individualism" and "collectivism."
THE LEAGUE offers the only practical alternative to the twin evils of Capitalism and Socialism. It is equally opposed to both; they both result in the concentration or property and power in a few hands to the enslavement of the majority.
Another brief quotation by Chesterton is worth considering. This is taken from a three-paragraph "Appendix" added to the end of his great work, What's Wrong with the World, and deals with the issue of "Peasant Proprietorship":
[T]he Socialist says that property is already concentrated into Trusts and Stores: the only hope is to concentrate it further in the State. I say the only hope is to unconcentrate it; that is, to repent and return; the only step forward is the step backward.
A recent essay in the newly re-launched Distributist Review might be of interest to our group: "The Authority of Rerum Novarum and Quadragesimo Anno"by Phillip Campbell.
In addition to this particular essay, we also recommend as a great resource The Distributist Review generally. Their posts are well categorized and easy to navigate. You can find separate sections on Chesterton, Belloc, and Catholic Social Teaching.
Happy reading! Let us know if you plan to attend by RSVP'ing below...
We aim to provide fellowship and fun in the Philadelphia area as we gather and honor the personal and literary legacy of G.K. Chesterton.
Links of Interest