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Chapter 34. Tenth Commandment: Embrace Poverty of Spirit • 453

Obstacles to Stewardship

People who want to live as Christian disciples and Christian

stewards face serious obstacles. In the United States and other

nations, a dominant secular culture often contradicts religious

convictions about the meaning of life. This culture frequently

encourages us to focus on ourselves and our pleasures. At times,

we can find it far too easy to ignore spiritual realities and to

deny religion a role in shaping human and social values.

As Catholics who have entered the mainstream of American

society and experienced its advantages, many of us also have

been adversely influenced by this secular culture. We know

1. What two attitudes does the Tenth Commandment forbid?

The tenth commandment forbids


. . . . It requires that

envy be banished from the human heart. (CCC, nos. 2536

and 2538)

2. How can we acquire poverty of spirit?

Abandonment to the providence of the Father in heaven

frees us from anxiety about tomorrow. Trust in God is a

preparation for the blessedness of the poor. They shall

see God. (CCC, no. 2547)

3. How can we be free of exaggerated dependence on

material goods?

Desire for true happiness frees man from his immoderate

attachment to the goods of this world so that he can find

his fulfillment in the vision and beatitude of God. “The

promise [of seeing God] surpasses all beatitude. . . . In

Scripture, to see is to possess. . . . Whoever sees God has

obtained all the goods of which he can conceive.” (CCC,

no. 2548, citing St. Gregory of Nyssa,

De Beatitudinibu

s 6:

PG 44, 1265A)