Formation Friday

“Do not lose any time. Do good, do all the good you can and you will never regret doing it” ~Don Bosco

St John Bosco encouraged people to do good for others, a sign of his unwavering commitment to his Catholic faith which he shared with the young people he cared for. Like Bosco, we as Catholics, are called to serve others and live according to the Catholic Social Teaching of the Church.  

Catholic Social Teaching acts as a moral compass, guiding our everyday actions and instructing us on how we should treat others and interact with one another. It is rooted in scripture, encyclicals (letters from the Pope) and the key teachings of Christ himself. At its core, Catholic Social Teaching instructs Catholics to uphold the dignity of the human person, this is extremely important because of the Catholic belief that all humans are made in the image and likeness of God. We have a calling to see Christ in all that we meet. Our faith calls us to love God and to love our neighbours, and by living according to Catholic Social Teaching we continue to build the Kingdom of God on Earth by creating a world of justice, love and peace. 

Here in St John Bosco Arts College, our acts of charity, kindness and love for one another demonstrates the Catholic Social Teaching of the Church. 

Catholic Social Teaching has seven key themes: 

Life and dignity of the human person 

This is the foundation for all of the themes of Catholic Social Teaching. Catholics believe that all life is sacred because we are taught in Genesis that humans are made in the image and likeness of God. This means that God is present in all humans, and it is vital that we treat all with love and kindness and uphold the dignity of each human person in the world. 

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you” ~Jeremiah 1:5 


We are one human family, and we must stand together and care for each other and remember that we belong to each other. In holding this believe we should be reminded that we are our brothers’ keepers. We should work for peace and justice and support each other in times of need.  The Parable of the Good Samaritan teaches us to love our neighbour, not just those who are similar to us in race, ethnicity, religion or economic status, but everyone. In the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats, Jesus reminds us again to serve one another.

“In truth I tell you, in so far as you did this to one of the least of these brothers (or sisters) of mine, you did it to me” ~Matthew 23:40 

The Common good 

By working together to improve the wellbeing of people in our world and sharing our resources we achieve the common good. We must support one another as a local, national and global community, and consider the impact that our actions have on others around the world. One example of this could be how we care for the environment. Considering the impact of global warming on the world’s poorest communities. The Earth belongs to everybody because God created it for us, and we must share its fruits amongst all. We must seek the common good and ensure that all people living in society have a right to participate in it, including the poor and vulnerable. 

"You are not making a gift of what is yours to the poor man, but you are giving him back what is his. You have been appropriating things that are meant to be for the common use of everyone. The earth belongs to everyone, not to the rich." ~St. Ambrose 

Option for the poor and vulnerable

We are called to imitate the love of Christ by giving preferential love to the most poor and vulnerable people in the world. It seems that in today’s world there is an ever-deepening division between the rich and poor, and as Catholics we must remember that God’s love is universal, and we therefore need to work together to create a more just society. Jesus inspired many people with his actions, specifically because of his preferential treatment of the poor and vulnerable in society, his actions are a model to us, that the needs of the poor and vulnerable must be considered first.  

“Each individual Christian and every community is called to be an instrument of God for the liberation and promotion of the poor society” ~St John Paul II 

The dignity of work and participation 

All work has value and as such all workers have value too. All humans have a right to carry out work, because for many it is a way of making a living and upholding our dignity. The human person should come before profit and to ensure that the workers dignity is protected the basic rights of workers must be respected too. Workers have the right to join trade unions, receive fair pay and fair working conditions. Fair trade is one example of this. It works to eliminate poverty by paying farmers a fair price for their produce and workers a fair wage for their labour.  

“We do not get dignity from power or money or culture. We get dignity from work. Work is fundamental to the dignity of the person” ~Pope Francis 


Peace is the cornerstone of the Catholic faith. Christianity teaches non-violence. Jesus said ‘Blessed are the peace makers’ and taught others to turn the other cheek in the face of violence. Peace is the outcome of justice, freedom and love. In living according to Catholic Social Teaching, we can achieve a more peaceful world. 

“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” ~Mother Teresa 

Care for God’s creation 

In the first book of the Bible, we learn that God created the world and that he made is good. As Catholics we are called to be stewards of the earth, we must protect what God has made for future generations. In his encyclical (letter) Laudato Si, Pope Francis called for all Catholics to consider how our actions and treatment of the earth affects the poorest in society. We must protect God’s creation and in turn we will protect one another. 

let us be ‘protectors’ of creation, protectors of God’s plan inscribed in nature, protectors of one another and of the environment” ~Pope Francis 

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