The Catholic Church across Yorkshire's historic West Riding since 1878

The Catholic Church across Yorkshire's historic West Riding since 1878


The duty of all of us to contribute to the cultural, economic and social development of the community. Participation is a duty to be fulfilled consciously by all, with responsibility and with a view to the common good. ‘The duty of all of us to contribute’.  

Explaining it…

God’s justice has to do with love, mercy, compassion, forgiveness which may be different from our understanding of the word ‘justice’. Biblical justice goes beyond what we human beings believe about justice. We may think justice means having to do with fairness, equity, a share in things, the scales of justice, a balance etc. In fact, biblical justice has much more to do with being in right relationship, rooted in the covenant relationship between God and his people. Love and faithfulness and righteousness – a steadfast love that is exhibited in the covenant relationship.  

Scripture readings:

Micah 6:8, Isaiah 58, Matthew 20:1-6.

In Micah 6 we are told ‘to love tenderly, act justly and walk humbly with our God’. Loving tenderly means being compassionate, merciful and forgiving. Do most of us think these things have anything to do with justice? Acting justly means living in right relationships with all people and all creation, acting fairly in all our relationships. Walking humbly with God calls us to listen and to live in obedience to God’s command, that is, to love our neighbour as ourselves, to love others as we are loved by God.

The prophet Isaiah (in chapter 58) tells us that religious acts of worship are worthless in God’s sight if we are not working to release those bound unjustly, to free the oppressed, to share our bread with the hungry, to cloth the naked and not to turn our backs on our own people. He emphasised that when we are striving to live in right relationship with all around us, our worship of God is truly authentic.

John 15:12-17 This is my commandment: love one another as I have loved you.

Acts 2:43-47 Life among the believers.

Romans 12:4-8 We are one body, individually members one of another.

Hebrews 10:24-25 Rouse one another to love and good works.

1Peter 4:8-11 Serve one another with the gifts you have received.

Key Church documents such as the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC), Papal documents etc.

Gaudete et Exsultate 

World Day of Peace:

(NB – This link will only take you to Pope Francis’ messages. If however you click the tab called (Holy Father) on the top you can access other Popes’ messages.) 

World Communication Day:

(NB – This link will only take you to Pope Francis’ messages. If however you click the tab called (Holy Father) on the top you can access other Popes’ messages.)   

Link to a particular Saint whose charism is linked to this particular principle

 St Pope Paul VI 

Link to local/national groups associated with this principle

Leeds Citizens:

Citizens UK:

Justice and Peace Network:

Combating loneliness: 

Focused prayer

God our loving Father from living stones, your chosen people, you built an eternal Church to your glory. We thank you for the gifts of your Spirit that you have given to your Church in this parish/association/chaplaincy. Continue to pour on us your grace, so that together we may grow as your faithful people. Give us wisdom in our hearts so that we may come to know your will, and always seek to live out eternal plan in our lives and our community. We ask this through Jesus Christ, Our Lord. Amen.  

Questions for personal/group reflection

We are all members of different communities: our families, parishes, neighbourhood, school, workplace, social group, nation etc. Do we participate in these communities or do we presume somebody else will do what is needed? What does participation mean for each of these communities? What skills and gifts have we been given by our loving Father God? How can we put these at the disposal of our communities?

Does our participation help build the Kingdom of God here on earth? Are we may be keeping our skills and gifts to ourselves? What is stopping us from sharing them? Are we lazy within our families, letting others run the household or make decisions? Do we strive to bring about peace, good communication and harmonious relationships?

What about in our parishes or schools – do we moan that certain things are not done, or could be done differently? Do we put ourselves forward in order to get these things done, or suggest changes? Maybe we are content just to moan? Is our moaning justified if we are not willing to act ourselves? 

Is this full participation making use of the life, talents and graces we have been gifted with by our Lord Jesus Christ? How are we invited to participate in the life of our nation? Do we stand up for justice, hold legislators and leaders accountable, use our political votes in an informed way to bring about the Common Good, recognising that every human is made in the image and likeness of God? How does living in a relationship with Our Lord Jesus Christ change how we participate?