Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Cardinal Müller sees dangers in American individualism

Catholic World News - July 03, 2014

To understand Pope Francis, the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has said, one must appreciate the experience of Latin American Catholics.

In an interview with the German magazine Alle Weit, Cardinal Gerhard Müller said that the Pope's approach to social questions is quite different from that of most Europeans. The German cardinal said that Pope Francis, like many Church leaders in Latin America, sees a need to change social structures, not merely political policies.

Noting that the social teaching of the Church has always offered critiques of both capitalism and socialism, Cardinal Müller took issue with American Catholics who idealize a free-market economy. “A balance must be found between freedom and social responsibility," he said. "One cannot simply absolutize US individualism, which has had a formative influence on US culture.”

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our April expenses ($26,663 to go):
$35,000.00 $8,336.70
76% 24%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 3 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: jg23753479 - Jul. 06, 2014 12:04 PM ET USA

    I suspect Card Müller and I would agree about a lot of things, but he and other church leaders need to pay more attention to what states around the globe are up to, viz. promoting immorality across the board. I put no particular stock in American individualism except when it serves to thwart the evil plans of statists like Barack Obama and his party. Then it can be a useful defensive weapon. Churchmen who think they can lie down with a tiger and not get bitten are only fooling themselves.

  • Posted by: unum - Jul. 04, 2014 8:41 AM ET USA

    It is sad to see Church leadership puzzled by the American Constitution which seeks to protect our God-given freedoms with personal responsibility. Americans were personally responsible for their brothers and sisters of the world in WW I and WW II and many gave all. Americans were personally responsible for their U.S. brothers and sisters during the Great Depression. Unfortunately, Europeans seem to see things through the eyes of the State, not the eyes of the individual child of God.

  • Posted by: Minnesota Mary - Jul. 03, 2014 10:37 PM ET USA

    I wonder if Cardinal Muller could point to a country that has brought about a greater standard of living for EVERYONE than the United States. We no longer have a free market economy in the U.S. anyway, and that is why our standard of living is dropping, and we have crony capitalism. The Cardinal needs some lessons in Austrian Economics.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org
Shop Amazon

Recent Catholic Commentary

Mysteries, again and again! 14 hours ago
Tips for getting comfortable with evangelization 17 hours ago
The Shroud of Turin on Display (and an odd canonical case against it) April 16
The Vatican says the LCWR is acting Catholic. And that's news. April 16
The Truth about the Armenian Genocide April 15

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope challenges world leaders' silence on persecution of Christians CWN - April 6
Pope outlines plans for the extraordinary jubilee of mercy CWN - April 13
Vatican completes doctrinal assessment of Leadership Conference of Women Religious CWN - April 16