The article explores Catholic social teaching's tradition of generality, and assesses the wisdom of, and potential for, change to a more specific orientation. The article enlightens the reader as to reasons for the traditional approach to Catholic social teaching, what might be gained by the articulation of a more concrete social teaching, the assertion that a more specific social teaching will require greater lay input, a suggestion for a possible mechanism for accomplishing this, and the benefits of greater lay input, particularly via the aforementioned mechanism. The article also makes some recommendations as to when, how, and to what degree the Church should aspire to a more detailed formation of its social teaching.
Date of this Version
Michele R. Pistone, "The Devil in the Details: How Specific Should Catholic Social Thought Teaching Be? " (January 2005). Villanova University School of Law Working Paper Series. Working Paper 28.