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Human Liberty, Rights and Equality


 Honor all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.

St Peter, First Epistle 2:17, c.45


By nature man is made superior to beasts, but not to other men.

St. Gregory I the Great, Pastoral Care, c.590


Individual liberty, freed from all bonds and all laws, all objective and social values, is in reality only a death-dealing anarchy.

Pius XII, Address to the World Federal Government Movement,
April 6, 1651


In accordance with the teachings of the Gospel, the equality of men consists in this: that all, having inherited the same nature, are called to the same most high dignity of the sons of God, and that, as one and the same end is set before all, each one is to be judged by the same law and will receive punishment or reward according to his deserts.

Leo XIII, Quod Apostoloci Muneris, December 28, 1878


The Church cannot approve of that liberty which begets a contempt of the the most sacred laws of God, and casts off the obedience due to lawful authority, for this is not liberty so much as license, and is most correctly styled by St. Augustine the "liberty of self-ruin," and by the Apostle St. Peter the "cloak of malice".

Leo XIII, Immortale Dei, November 1, 1885


The eternal law of God is the sole standard and rule of human liberty.

Leo XIII, Libertas, June 20, 1888


Every man has a right by nature to possess property as his own.

Leo XIII, Rerum Novarum, May 15, 1891


We must not be so insistent upon demanding our rights as in discharging our obligations.

Benedict XV, Letter to the Bishop of Bergamo, 1920


The Church teaches (She alone has been given by God the mandate and the right to teach with authority) that not only our acts as individuals but also as groups and as nations must conform to the eternal law of God.

Pius XI, Ubi Arcano Dei Consilio, December 23, 1922


To stifle the opinions of citizens, to reduce them forcibly to silence, is, in the eyes of every Christian, an outrage on the natural rights of man.

Pius XII, Address to the International Convention of Catholic Press,
February 18, 1950


For every fundamental human right draws its indestructible moral force from the natural law, which in granting it imposes a corresponding obligation.

John XXIII, Pacem in Terris, April 11, 1963


Those, therefore, who claim their own rights, yet altogether forget or neglect to carry out their respective duties, are people who build with one hand and destroy with the other.

John XXIII, Pacem in Terris, April 11, 1963


When freedom is detached from objective truth it becomes impossible to establish personal rights on a firm rational basis; and the ground is laid for society to be at the mercy of the unrestrained will of individuals or the oppressive totalitarianism of public authority.

John Paul II, Evangelium Vitae, March 25, 1995

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