Nonfiction > Upton Sinclair, ed. > The Cry for Justice

Upton Sinclair, ed. (1878–1968).
The Cry for Justice: An Anthology of the Literature of Social Protest.  1915.
The Voice of the Early Church. IX.

By St. Gregory the Great

(Latin; c.540–604)
THEY must be admonished who do not seek another’s goods, yet do not give of their own, that they may know that the earth from which they have received is common to all men, and therefore its products are given in common to all. They, therefore, wrongly think they are innocent who claim for themselves the common gift of God. When they do not give what they have received, they assist in the death of neighbors, because daily almost as many of the poor perish as have been deprived of means which the rich have kept to themselves. When we give necessaries to the needy we do not bestow upon them our goods; we return to them their own; we pay a debt of justice rather than fulfil a work of mercy.  1

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