12/12/2019

Wilhelm Röpke on liberalism and Catholic social teaching

"Wilhelm Röpke, Catholic social teaching, and the authentic liberal tradition all hold to a conception of what Lord Acton described as, “The society that is beyond the state – the individual souls that are above it.” Such a conception is also shared by a broader tradition within Christian social thought in general. Abraham Kuyper is perhaps the leading light in the modern Reformed tradition whose vision of sphere sovereignty shares much in common with both the concept of subsidiarity in Catholic social teaching and Röpke’s own concept of the intersecting and interdependent orden which make up our social life. Röpke’s own Lutheran tradition is no stranger to this line of thought from the Table of Duties in Luther’s Small Catechism to the robust natural law theory of Niels Hemmingsen, “the teacher of Denmark.”"