Human Dignity: The foundation of all Catholic Social Teaching is the inherent dignity of every human person because everyone is created in God's image and likeness and therefore, valuable and worthy of respect. The Church calls for Integral Human Development, which concerns the wellbeing of each person in every facet of life including economic, political, social, ecological, and spiritual. The dignity of the individual demands justice: people should not make economic, social or environmental choices which cause disparities between people. The dignity of the person does not come from the work they do but from the people they are: each person is imprinted with God's image. When we deal with each other, we should do so with a sense of awe that arises from the presence of something holy and sacred. Subhuman living conditions, unlawful imprisonment, slavery, human trafficking, and poor working conditions poison human society and destroy human dignity. Human personhood must be respected with a reverence that is religious. Scripture: Genesis 1:26-31; Deuteronomy 10:17-19; Luke 10:25-37; Romans 12:9-18; 1 Corinthians 3:16
Stewardship of God's Creation: A Catholic world view emphasizes the importance of the family, place and the environment. This is explored as students develop their understanding of their personal world and their identity. Students consider the concept of stewardship of God's creation as they explore their physical world and how to be caretakers of creation. The concept of belonging is central to Catholic teaching in that it affirms the goodness of each person and their need to belong.
Humans take their place within the midst of creation. Human beings are not outside of creation as if superior to creation. All of God's creation is sacred. Land and animals alike need a chance to rest, rejuvenate and recover. It is a distortion for humans to claim that they are more important than the rest of creation. Humans do not have dominion over creation, rather they are called to be stewards of creation.
Caring for and cultivating the world. Caring for and cultivating the world involves: a joyful appreciation for the God-given beauty and wonder of nature; protection and preservation of the environment, which would be the stewardship of ecological concern; respect for human life but doing all that can be done to enhance this gift and make life flourish; and developing the world through human effort. As stewards of God's gifts, we are not passive beneficiaries. We cooperate with God by continuing the redemptive work of Jesus in the mission of the Church.