Vatican calls for global authority on economic issues

Wall Street sign near New York Stock Exchange (CNS photo/Reuters)

UPDATED STORYVatican document calls for global authority to regulate markets

VATICAN CITY — A Vatican document called for the gradual creation of a “world political authority” with broad powers to regulate financial markets and rein in the “inequalities and distortions of capitalist development.”

The document said the current global financial crisis has revealed “selfishness, collective greed and the hoarding of goods on a great scale.” A supranational authority, it said, is needed to place the common good at the center of international economic activity.

The 41-page text was titled, “Toward Reforming the International Financial and Monetary Systems in the Context of Global Public Authority.” Prepared by the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, it was released Oct. 24 in several languages, including a provisional translation in English.

The document cited the teachings of popes over the last 40 years on the need for a universal public authority that would transcend national interests. The current economic crisis, which has seen growing inequality between the rich and poor of the world, underlines the necessity to take concrete steps toward creating such an authority, it said.

One major step, it said, should be reform of the international monetary system in a way that involves developing countries. The document foresaw creation of a “central world bank” that would regulate the flow of monetary exchanges.

The document also proposed:

— Taxation measures on financial transactions. Revenues could contribute to the creation of a “world reserve fund” to support the economies of countries his by crisis, it said.

— Forms of recapitalization of banks with public funds that make support conditional on “virtuous” behavior aimed at developing the real economy.

— More effective management of financial “shadow markets” that are largely uncontrolled today.

Such moves would be designed to make the global economy more responsive to the needs of the person, and less “subordinated to the interests of countries that effectively enjoy a position of economic and financial advantage,” it said.

In making the case for a global authority, the document said the continued model of nationalistic self-interest seemed “anachronistic and surreal” in the age of globalization.

“We should not be afraid to propose new ideas, even if they might destabilize pre-existing balances of power that prevail over the weakest,” it said.

The “new world dynamics,” it said, call for a “gradual, balanced transfer of a part of each nation’s powers to a world authority and to regional authorities.”

“In a world on its way to rapid globalization, the reference to a world authority becomes the only horizon compatible with the new realities of our time and the needs of humankind,” it said. Helping to usher in this new society is a duty for everyone, especially for Christians, it said.

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11 Responses to Vatican calls for global authority on economic issues

  1. I don’t think the world is ready for this…

  2. Mrs Mary D says:

    I’d like to see the names on this ‘document’.
    I’d be sure the Pope isn’t one of them.

    “We should not be afraid to propose new ideas, even if they might destabilize pre-existing balances of power that prevail over the weakest,” it said.

    The “new world dynamics,” it said, call for a “gradual, balanced transfer of a part of each nation’s powers to a world authority and to regional authorities.”


    And who elects this WORLD authority………………………..

  3. Wonsil says:

    Uh, let he without financial scandal throw the first stone. Our Church has a supernational financial authority and it hasn’t added to any transparency or prevented corruption. The problem with strong central authorities is that they have the unintended consequence that eventually they end up helping those we’re trying to manage. You end up having the foxes guard the hen house.

  4. Marcello says:

    Wow. Awful idea. This should be avoided at all costs. Giving a single institution so much legal authority over the entire planet’s economy is an invitation to corruption on an unimaginable scale. The poor will be kicked even further down the ladder, and the rich and powerful will climb even higher to the top. On economic issues, the Church is astonishingly naive.

  5. Sally Guanella Buckland says:

    We were in Rome, at St.Peter’s Square yesterday, Sunday October 23, 2011 for the canonization of my 5th cousin Santo Luigi Guanella. My sister, my husband and our two sons traveled from Colorado to be part of this once in a lifetime experience and we were inspired by the ocassion.

    Santo Luigi Guanella spent his life (1842-1915) helping others in Europe, the USA and South America. We want to continue his hard work by helping others in our small mountain town of Empire, Colorado. We have always given to our town in unselfish ways but now we are inspired to do more.

    I agree with some of the earlier posts that one world agency is dangerous for our world economy. I think that all the churches, banks, governments, businesses and everyone else should lead the way by being more generous. Let all of us share and help those less fortunate by giving them a hand up and not just a hand out.

    Sally Guanella Buckland

  6. mark costanzo says:

    while @ first glance, the call for a global authority is not evil in & of itself, & @ least in theory makes sense, it certainly has the ominous undercurrent of, however well-intended, of helping lay the foundation for ” the beast ” the prophetic scriptures point to near the culmination of the present age..this is getting a little creepy.

  7. Leona says:

    First, it was allowing male prostitutes to use condoms, rather than telling them to stop being sexually active outside of marriage, and now suggestions about how the world finances should be run! I agree, let he who is without sin, cast the first stone.

  8. Alvin says:

    This should be deeply disturbing news to all Catholics. Traditional Catholic teaching has always steered clear of endorsing, let alone encouraging, a one-world authoritarian concept (see Pope Benedict XV’s Moto Propio Bonum Sane). It’s equally disturbing that much of this ‘thought’ was born out of Vatican II. It seems that those in the Vatican have completely forgotten the Principle of Subsidiarity and are ushering us toward a communistic socialism – something Our Lady vehemently warned against.

  9. Jan J says:

    Don’t worry everyone. It’s all in the Book and we know how it ends!! These are indeed scary times, but if you believe in Christ as your personal Saviour, our mediator between him and God, then these are also exciting times! Read the books of Daniel and Revelation, note the prophecies, then you will be comforted by the fact that, in the end, it’s going to be wonderful. All the prophecies will be fulfilled…I just don’t think it will do any of us any good to worry about how.

  10. read your bible says:

    Why do you people even marvel about this, it was foretold in Revelations 17 and 18.
    Please read it to find out why this happening and what the end will be of it.
    This is not talking about the beast or the false prophet but the harlot that rides upon the beast.
    It is not a government but a woman that rides on the government or system.
    The church is represented as a woman or bride.
    Rev 18: 21 And a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying, Thus with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down, and shall be found no more at all.
    22 And the voice of harpers, and musicians, and of pipers, and trumpeters, shall be heard no more at all in thee; and no craftsman, of whatsoever craft he be, shall be found any more in thee; and the sound of a millstone shall be heard no more at all in thee;
    23 And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived.
    24 And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth.
    For verse 24 read the foxes book of martyrs.
    What it tells you to do in Revelations 18:4
    And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.

  11. who owns the money says:

    For all of you worried about the poor and feeding them
    The Catholic church is the biggest financial power, wealth accumulator and property owner in existence. She is a greater possessor of material riches than any other single institution, corporation, bank, giant trust, government or state of the whole globe. The pope, as the visible ruler of this immense amassment of wealth, is consequently the richest individual of the twentieth century. No one can realistically assess how much he is worth in terms of billions of dollars.
    Hmmmm maybe they should stop being the worlds biggest hypocrites and start living what the Bible actually says and stop begging for more wealth and start feeding the poor for once instead of their own bellies.
    Numbers don’t lie, but the Vatican does.

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