Resources on Faith, Ethics and Public Life

Populorum Progressio (On the Development of Peoples)

March 26, 1967

Popolorum Progressio, released amid the tumultuous late 1960s, expresses Pope Paul VI's concerns regarding growing global inequality and the prevalence of dire poverty in the developing world in light of his own travels to Latin America and Europe. It links basic tenets of Christianity with the moral imperatives created by the unequal distribution of material resources. In addition, the encyclical decries the political instability and social conflict that often flow from such radically unjust arrangements. While praising those who seek to redress inequality, Popolorum Progressio argues that individual undertakings are insufficient to address systemic injustice and stresses the importance of international cooperation. Echoing previous repudiations of the extremes of unrestrained capitalism and revolutionary socialism, the encyclical calls for solidarity and collaboration to promote a global development for the common good.

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