Catholic Social Teaching is based on the belief that God has a plan for creation, a plan to build his kingdom of peace, love and justice.
It holds that God has a special plan for every single one of us, whoever we are. Our part in this plan isn’t just limited to things ‘spiritual’, or times when we do “religious things.” It involves every aspect of our lives, from the things we pray about, to how we live as a responsible global citizen.
Our part in this story is a kind-of vocation for the common good, a call to treat everyone as our brothers and sisters. It is something that we all share.
The Catholic Church has seven principles of social teaching that we share with our children through all that we do, through the curriculum, special events and activity and through our ordinary actions in school.
At St Francis’, Catholic Social Teaching is incorporated into our curriculum. Children are asked to put their faith into action and reflect on how their learning enables them to do so.
Catholic Social Teaching underpins the essence of our daily school life. As members of the Catholic Church, we are all called upon to preserve the dignity of all human beings, to care for creation, and to reach out to our sisters and brothers in need. Pope Francis emphasises that it is our duty to work together to bring about a more just and peaceful world: to put love into action. It is vital that our children can articulate the connection between Jesus’ teaching and doing good deeds. We use the CAFOD Catholic Social Teaching resources and the animal mascots to support the children’s understanding of principles.
The animal mascots are used with EYFS, KS1 and Lower KS2. The keys are introduced in the resources for Upper Key Stage 2.
We are called to uphold the principles of Catholic Social Teaching.
Human Dignity – Everyone is Special
St Paul tells us that each person is a work of art, created by God and chosen for a unique purpose. Ephesians 2:10
At St Francis’ we recognise the human dignity of others by:
- being respectful
- treating people equally
- raising awareness of civil rights
- preferential option for the vulnerable
The Common Good– Taking Part in our Communities
“You are not making a gift of your possessions to the poor person. You are handing over to them what is theirs.” St Ambrose (340-397 AD)
At St Francis’ we show we are part of a community by:
- working together
- working for the common good
- participating and engaging
- being active members of our community
Participation – The dignity of Work
Do the hard work of getting along with each other, treating each other with dignity and honour. (James 3:17)
And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbour as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 22:37-40
At St Francis’ we recognise the dignity of work by:
- respecting all workers
- contributing to society
- making responsible economic choices
- supporting wellbeing and workers’ rights
sharing our talents with others
Subsidiarity– All people Should have a Say
Blessed are they who maintain justice, who constantly do what is right- Psalm 106:3
Fear not for I am with you. I am your God. I will strengthen you. I will help you. I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10
At St Francis’ we acknowledge our rights and responsibilities by:
- recognising our duties as members of a community
- standing up for what is right
- following our school rules
Stewardship – Caring for God’s Creation and Gifts
The ecological crisis is also a summons to profound interior conversion…Living our vocation to be protectors of God’s handiwork is essential to a life of virtue; it is not an optional or a secondary aspect of our Christian experience. Pope Francis – Laudato Si
At St Francis’ we show we care for creation by:
- taking responsibility for our environment
- making environmentally responsible choices
- having awe and wonder for the natural world
Solidarity – We are One Big Family
Blessed Pope Paul VI taught that “If you want peace, work for justice”. The Gospel calls us to be peacemakers.
At St Francis’ we show solidarity by:
- raising awareness of social justice
- writing to our local leaders
- praying for others
- making connections
- making socially responsible choices
Option for the poor – Some People need Extra Help
‘For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ Matthew 25:35-40
At St Francis’ we show a preferential option for the poor and vulnerable by:
- fundraising for charitable causes
- raising awareness
- treating others with dignity and respect
- thinking of the needs of others
Distributive Justice – Being Fair
…we are agreed today that the earth is essentially a shared inheritance, whose fruits are meant to benefit everyone.’ Pope Francis, Laudato Si’
At St Francis’ we recognise the need to share the worlds resources fairly by:
- celebrating Fair Trade Fortnight
- becoming a Fair aware school
- by sharing our belongs
Promoting Peace – We can be God’s instruments of Peace
“Our common bonds of humanity demand that we live in harmony and that we promote what is good for one another. These ethical implications are the reason why solidarity is a basic key to peace.” St John Paul II
At St Francis’ we show we are people of peace by:
- treating each other kindly
- turning away from conflict
- creating bonds between people