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Reclaiming Catholic Social Teaching

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  89 ratings  ·  12 reviews
Many claim that Catholic Social Teaching implies the existence of a vast welfare state. In these pages, Anthony Esolen pulls back the curtain on these false philosophers, showing how they’ve undermined the authentic social teachings of the Church in order to neutralize the biggest threat to their plans for secularization — the Catholic Church.

With the voluminous writings
Kindle Edition, 208 pages
Published October 21st 2014 by Sophia Institute Press (first published October 1st 2014)
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Cameron M
Mar 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Anthony Esolen knocked this book out of the park. He does a great job of breaking the book up into parts that build upon one another that gradually come together to form the great picture that is Catholic Social Teaching; a Catholic State.
God willing we can arrive to something so heavenly someday, especially with writers such as Anthony.
Jan 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Reclaiming Catholic Social Teaching is a recent book by Dr. Anthony Esolen which dives into the writings and teachings of Pope Leo XIII and seeks to offer "a defense of the Church's true teachings on marriage, family, and the state." The first chapter is entitled "Man, in the Image of God." Dr. Esolen describes this as the most fundamental truth and states that "any society built upon other premises will be radically deficient." He then goes on to explain what would happen to society if we ...more
Andy Simons
Nov 15, 2018 rated it did not like it
Esolen is out of his element. He’d like Catholic social teaching to be part of the GOP platform. But it’s not. So, he takes Rerum Novarum, the 19th C encyclical of Pope Leo XIII, and extrapolates from that where Esolen thinks CST *should* have gone. But it did not go where Esolen thinks it should have gone.

Terrible book. It’ll be a hit with Trump supporters and those who have not read any social encyclicals.
Brianna Osborne
Jan 15, 2017 rated it liked it
Very interesting! It would be very difficult to put into practice some of Esolen's suggestions, but I admire his vision. I find the title somewhat misleading, since he spends most of his time on God and the family, and not social justice teachings.
Apr 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Good coverage of the key topics. In the current situation there is more clarity here that Reformed Protestants can share.
Jun 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One to read and read again, methinks.
Daniel Millard
My second Esolen book, and this one specifically focused upon Catholic social order, Church-wide. Though he does still provide ample commentary on modern problems (greed, socialism, acedia, etc.). The title is perhaps slightly misleading, as Esolen focuses very largely upon the encyclicals and writings of Pope Leo XIII (though, professedly, because too many consider Leo to be the "Father of Catholic Social Teaching" - a title Esolen and Leo himself would likely reject).

Broadly, Esolen strongly
Jan 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
A delightful synthesis of the corpus of Pope Leo XIII, written for those of us who have only encountered him through the lens of Rerum Novarum.
Trae Johnson
Sep 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is a very good book on the social teachings of the Church. Esolen, drawing from the writings of Pope Leo XIII, provides a principled and relatively brief exposition on major areas of Catholic social teaching (e.g., Man, Human Liberty, Marriage, Family, Social Life, The Church, Work, and The State). Esolen's summary shows, most importantly, the unity and integrity of Catholic social teaching, for which there exists no truly rational and livable alternative, as is demonstrated (e.g., ...more
Oct 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
"If the Catholic Christian view is correct, if man is made by God, in His image, for the enjoyment of the very life of God, then any society built upon other premises will be radically deficient."

This quote from the beginning chapter of Anthony Esolen's book puts Catholic Social Teaching in a nutshell. Based on the extensive and profound writings of Pope Leo XIII on Catholic Social Teaching - which Esolen brings to new light - is not only a welcome but essential contribution far beyond the
Jan 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
I'm tempted to read the whole thing again because the first time through it felt a little too meandering. Toward the end, it all began to come together for me, and when I did reread the beginning, it became clear where he was headed.
Now I would dearly love to see our world live by the eminently coherent Catholic social teaching, and as much as we can in our own lives, it is worth striving for. I guess I'm skeptical, though, as we are SO far away from that. Still, Dr. Esolen does lay it all out
Andrew Haskins
Jul 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Excellent review and perspective of true catholic social teaching, as opposed to what we too often hear promoted as social teaching. Anthony Esolen draws on the teachings of Pope Leo XIII to draw us back to true Christian society, based on the family, to the view of state as a society of societies. Highly recommend this for everyone
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Anthony M. Esolen is a professor of English at Thomas More College, and noted translator of classic works, as well as a popular writer for magazines like the Claremont Review and Touchstone, of which he is a senior editor. He has translated Dante's Divine Comedy, Lucretius' On the Nature of Things, and Torquato Tasso's Jerusalem Delivered. He also writes a column for the Inside Catholic website.