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422 • Part III. Christian Morality: The Faith Lived

iar, and episcopal documents. The depth and richness of this

tradition can be understood best through a direct reading of

these documents. In these brief reflections, we wish to highlight

several of the key themes that are at the heart of our Catholic

social tradition.

Life and Dignity of the Human Person

The Catholic Church proclaims that human life is sacred and

that the dignity of the human person is the foundation of a

moral vision for society. Our belief in the sanctity of human life

1. What should be the attitude of business toward

the environment?


responsible for business enterprises

are responsible

to society for the economic and ecological effects of their

operations. They have an obligation to consider the good

of persons and not only the increase of


. (CCC,

no. 2432)

2. Who should have access to employment and professions?

Access to employment

and to professions must be open

to all without unjust discrimination: men and women,

healthy and disabled, natives and immigrants. For its part

society should, according to circumstances, help citizens

find work and employment. (CCC, no. 2433)

3. When is a strike permissible?

Recourse to a


is morally legitimate when it cannot

be avoided, or at least when it is necessary to obtain a

proportionate benefit. It becomes morally unacceptable

when accompanied by violence, or when objectives are

included that are not directly linked to working condi-

tions or are contrary to the common good. (CCC, no. 2435)