Another Set of Quotes You Should Know

At the end of the post I linked yesterday, Frank Weathers borrows from a post on the TFP Student Action site (“Defending moral values on campus”) listing “12 Quotes Against Sodomy That Every Catholic Should Know.” The quotes start from the Church Fathers and move on through the scholars of the middle ages. The idea is that the Church has labeled homosexual acts as sinful for 20 centuries, and therefore there’s no chance those acts could ever be considered good.

The folks at TFP Student Action ask you to share their post “with all your Catholic friends.”

Well, friends, please also feel free to share this handful of quotes (from the same guys) about the sinfulness of lending money at interest:

St. John Chrysostom (347-407):

“What can be more unreasonable than to sow without land, without rain, without plows? All those who give themselves up to this damnable culture shall reap only tares. Let us cut off these monstrous births of gold and silver, let us stop this execrable fecundity.”

St. Jerome (347-420):

“If you gave to a prosperous person you should not have done so: but if (even so) you gave it as to a needy person, why should you demand more on the score of his being prosperous? Some lenders are wont to take small gifts of different value, not realizing that whatever is received over and above what was given is called usury and superabundance. They ought not to take more, however much it be, than was originally given by them.”

Leo the Great (400-461):

“And hence, whatever result follow, the money-lender’s trade is always bad, for it is sin either to lessen or increase the sum, in that if he lose what he lent he is wretched, and if he takes more than he lent he is more wretched still. The iniquity of money-lending must be absolutely abjured, and the gain which lacks all humanity must be shunned.”

St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274):

I answer that, To take usury for money lent is unjust in itself, because this is to sell what does not exist, and this evidently leads to inequality which is contrary to justice

…Now money, according to the Philosopher (Ethic. v, 5; Polit. i, 3) was invented chiefly for the purpose of exchange: and consequently the proper and principal use of money is its consumption or alienation whereby it is sunk in exchange. Hence it is by its very nature unlawful to take payment for the use of money lent, which payment is known as usury: and just as a man is bound to restore other ill-gotten goods, so is he bound to restore the money which he has taken in usury.

St. Bernadine of Siena (1380-1444):

“And therefore thou seest that they both go to the home of the devil—he who doth lend, and he who is the occasion thereof. And the money that they gain thereby? It cometh to ruin through the judgment of God.”

Get the point? For centuries, lending money at interest was considered as sinful and unnatural as any homosexual act. Now?

Look, we all know that Church doctrine doesn’t change. But it does develop, sometimes in very surprising ways. If someone tells you they know for certain how it will (or won’t) evolve, or that a particular development is impossible, or that we’ll always understand Church teachings in the same way we do today, they probably aren’t paying close attention to history.  


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s