Love in Action. Catholic Social Teaching for Every Church

Author: Simon Cuff
ISBN 978-0-334-05793-2
SCM Press 2019. Paperback, 216 pp. £15.99.
Pastoral Review bookshop price £14.40

Last year in this journal we reviewed Archbishop Justin Welby’s book about the future of this country, Reimagining Britain1 in which the Anglican Primate unapologetically draws on Catholic Social Teaching. This growing endorsement of the theological tradition by all Christians (without simply describing it as ‘Christian social ethics’ or the like) is a significant new development. It is encouraging for Catholics teaching in the field, since even now there is so much ignorance of social teaching even among clergy. Some of the best material about Catholic Social Teaching is from other Christians.

Such would be a new book by Fr Simon Cuff, who teaches at St Mellitus College, a large non- residential ministry programme for the Anglican and Free churches. The book is laid out around various principles of social teaching, drawing extensively on basic sources and also focusing on key specific issues. Two issues which Cuff draws attention to, which the Anglican and Catholic Churches respectively have prioritised, are high interest ‘loan sharks’ and human trafficking and slavery. In an introductory chapter Cuff also makes extensive use of certain key figures in the tradition such as St Thomas Aquinas, Henry Manning, Joseph Cardijn and Dorothy Day.

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