Rabbi Mark Goldsmith, Principal Rabbi of North Western Reform Synagogue, London and Rev Seamus Finn, Director Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation, Missionary Oblates, Washington DC.
Rabbi Goldsmith and Fr. Finn are members of the Executive Committee of the International Interfaith Investment Group (3iG)
The world has never been fully created. Judaism teaches that each human being is God’s partner in the continuing work of creation, through the concept of Tikkun Olam, our responsibility to repair the world in order that it can achieve the perfection that was intended for it. In his 1967 Encyclical Populorum Progressio Pope Paul VI stated the Christian parallel to this doctrine: “Everyone who works is a creator”. Many quotations from Populorum Progressio are included in the encyclical Caritas in Veritate (Truth in Charity) published on July 7 by Pope Benedict XVI, which is the latest statement of Catholic social teaching for today.
Human work is never morally neutral. We always do it within the context of the economy of the time and place. (…)
Just as we expect a good standard of ethical practice from charities and governmental bodies, so too should we expect and demand a good standard of ethics from the businesses in which we invest. Our faith demands that we do no less as we seek to realise our commitment to one another and to our earthly home. As Pope Benedict’s Encyclical teaches corporations are just as much participants in God’s world with duties as well as rights as we are as individuals.