Justice, Common Good, and fairness from a globalized economy in Latin America and the Caribbean
Justice, Common Good, and fairness from a globalized economy in Latin America and the Caribbean

Let us assume our responsibilities is one of the reflective and moral axes behind this call of Social Pastoral Caritas.

Author: Department of Justice and Solidarity | Source:

Justice, Common Good, and fairness from a globalized economy in Latin America and the Caribbean 
Let us assume our responsibilities is one of the reflective and moral axes behind this call of Social Pastoral Caritas 

By: Department of Justice and Solidarity | Source: 

Responding to the call of the Department of Justice and Solidarity of the CELAM, we have met in Lima, Peru, from 10 to 12 May, 40 people from Pastoral Social Caritas, from 19 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, with the challenges that imply thinking of another way of understanding and doing economics, from justice and equity, so that the common good becomes a reality in our peoples. 

1. The society in Latin America and the Caribbean is in a permanent change in the cultural, economic, political systems, which reflect the way of conceiving the human being; new paradigms are also emerging, questioning the existing systems and forcing them to give adequate answers to the times of profound changes we are living. 

2. We note to this reality that the recent energy, financial, economic, humanitarian, climate change and food crises are seriously affecting the quality of life of entire populations, immersing millions of people in poverty, Excluded of all benefits for a full life. All of the above makes a crisis of the underlying values of societies much more evident. 

3. Among the most serious effects of these crises are their impact on the reality that workers live (loss of employment, quantity, and quality), their social vulnerability and the reduction of possibilities for social public spending of Governments and external cooperation, with limited exhaust valves (informal employment, migrations, etc.) 

4. All this indicates that the economy implemented from a globalising process has not given the expected results, because globalization assuming only the economic dimension, “is not able to interpret and react according to the objective values that are find beyond the market and constitute the most important thing in human life: truth, justice, love, and especially, the dignity and rights of all, even those who live outside the market” (DA 61). 

5. In the face of this type of globalization, new alternatives are needed that are aimed at promoting different globalization, which is marked by solidarity, justice, and respect for human rights (DA 64). 

6. In today's Latin America and the Caribbean, we believe it is appropriate to create structures that consolidate a social, economic and political order in which there is no inequality and where there are possibilities for all (DA 384). This implies decisions and a regulation that goes through a process of permanent conversion, as people and as an ecclesial community, where the priority is the dignity of the human being in its integral development and the creation of a society with justice and fairness. 

7. One of the necessary actions is to reverse in the first instance the effects of the current economic model that governs our countries and, secondly, the change of this model. For this, they are hopefully opening a series of initiatives that are emerging in different communities, like yeast in the mass, like “sparks”  that keep alive the heat of the fire in the homes, and that they are gradually permeating the financial and organizational area of the economy.

8. In this dynamic we see important opportunities: the awareness of the peoples to be actors of change, the increase of solidarity-based economic relations from communities and for communities, work on social and economic networks alternatives, the emergence of new social leaderships, experiences of dialogue and consensus to overcome conflicts, the presence of “prophetic minorities” that are driving forms of solidarity economy, fair trade and popular finances. 

9. All this reflects the great effort of the communities to expand the participatory democratic processes, the greater use of the media, always having as a center to the human person and the care of the environments and the ecology, from the development of capacities of the people, looking for conditions of sustainability and long term sustainability through “micro”level enterprises that are projected to the regional and national. Also, despite the diversity of trends, some governments in the region have created favorable environments for the advancement of solidarity economy, fair trade, and popular finance among others, which need to be permanent and growing. 

10. The approach to promoting integral human development “from the local side” helps to reduce vulnerabilities in the face of market insertion, access to credit and technical and management training, but also generating organizations self-management and cooperatives, creating social models based on local identities, with opportunities to make strategic alliances between civil society and local governments in order to seek the sustainability and sustainability of these experiences. 

11. From the ecclesial level, in order to achieve the development of these experiences and their impact on our societies, it is necessary to create a shared vision of the future in the perspective of the construction of the Kingdom of God, with the change of expire structures that obstruct the action of the Spirit and prevent the meeting of the brother with a solidarity attitude sustained by love in the truth (cf. DA 365).

12. The Church itself "needs a strong shock that prevents it from settling in comfort, stagnation and in the warmth, regardless of the suffering of the poor of the continent" (DA 362). "The crisis forces us to revise our path, to give us new rules and to find new forms of commitment, to support ourselves in positive experiences and to reject negative ones. In this way, the crisis becomes the occasion to discern and project in a new way. The difficulties of the present in this key, in a confident way rather than resigned, should be addressed "(CIV 21) 
13. The encyclical Caritas in Veritate emphasizes the need for ethics in economic processes. Beyond this, Pope Benedict XVI challenges us to think that "in the age of globalization, economic activity cannot do without gratuitousness, which encourages and extends solidarity and responsibility for justice and the common good in its various instances and agents. It is, in short, a concrete and profound form of economic democracy. " (CIV 38). 
14. We believe that it is an ethical imperative to assume the principles of the Social Doctrine of the Church of the supremacy of work on capital, the universal destination of goods and subsidiarity, to promote the construction of a just economy and solidarity in the region. 
15. Faced with the situation of our countries, we cannot be mere spectators but active subjects engaged in the transformation of the world. Because "Charity in truth means the need to give form and organization to economic initiatives that, without giving up the benefit, want to go beyond the logic of the exchange of equivalent things and profits as an end in itself." (CIV 38). 
16. Great are the challenges we have from our choice for the poor in the field of economics, justice, and fairness. These challenges challenge us personally and communitarian, requiring us the revision and renovation of structures and organizations to contribute to the emergence of new paradigms that favor the life worthy of the peoples. 
17. We feel the urgent need to renew and strengthen the Christian spirituality of those who work in the service of the poor, so that it is based on the experience of the attentive listening and deep meditation of the word of God as a source main energy, wisdom and love, to discern the signs of the times and create new imaginary that allow us to live the civilization of love, as an obvious sign of the Kingdom of God among us.

18. From our identity as missionary disciples of Jesus Christ, we are aware of the unavoidable responsibility of making the good news of God present in the world of the economy; in this mission, we identify as urgent the following challenges: 
A. To animate a true Christian spirituality, inspired by the mystery of the Incarnation of the Son of God that assumes our condition to bring life to its fullness. 

B. To create an alternative economic thought, whose rationality is based on justice, the common good, and fairness, emphasizing the ethics of economic processes and gratitude so that all people have life and life in abundance (cf. Jn. 10.10). 

C. To open the economy to the transdisciplinarity, so that the human being is valued in its entirety, in harmony with the whole of creation. 

D) To assess efforts in promoting economic alternatives, such as the solidarity economy, fair trade, popular finances among others, encouraged by collaborative relationships, inspired by the values of the Gospel that locate the human being as a subject and purpose of all economic activity. 

To promote advocacy with local and national governments to generate public policies conducive to the development of a fair and solidarity alternative economy. 

F. To witness with our works the truth of the Gospel as a way of authentic liberation in Jesus Christ, which opens us to the life of communion and gratuitousness of the human family in the dynamics of love in truth. 

G. To promote processes of renewal of the Social Pastoral Caritas so that, attentive to the signs of the times, in fidelity to its teacher and animated by the Spirit of God, reaffirm its evangelizing action as a process of dignifying people, especially the poorer. 

H. To be aware of the value and importance of the experiences of change in the way of understanding and living the economy, which, although small, make their way through the cracks of the cracked society as signs of hope and life. 

19. We seek to be a Church of life, of witness, to walk with the people and to make their own the joys and hopes, sorrows and anxieties of the men of our time, especially of the poor and of those who suffer (GS 1). This walk involves opening up more spaces for the laity to assume their mission in the world of economics and politics, especially women and new generations who are creatively discovering new ways of living solidarity and gratuitousness in the economy. 

We put in the hands of the Virgin Mary, mother of the poor and Lady of Hope, the desires and purposes of living our commitment infidelity and total dedication to Christ and his project of life for our peoples. May the Holy Spirit of God guide and assist us in this mission. 

Lima, 13th May 2010, Feast of Our Lady of Fatima

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