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Statement of Principles

Coming from a perspective of Christian faith, we believe that human beings were created in the image of God, but as a result of the Fall, they are tainted with sin that manifests itself in their incorrect use of freedom. We acknowledge the complexity of human nature and do not share one-dimensional or reductionist perspectives of humanity, thus attempting to avoid both the excessive optimism that would lead one to embrace various utopian social and political projects and the exaggerated pessimism that often leads to apathy, cynicism and general resignation. We seek to appeal to "the better angels of our nature," in the hope that many will embrace the values that contribute to the common good.

Our fundamental belief is that a more free, peaceful and just world can only emerge by embracing a deeper sense of moral responsibility. We believe that the origin and grounding of this responsibility is ultimately in God, and the Christian tradition provides a plethora of resources for the awakening and cultivating of moral responsibility. We do not claim, however, that only people of Christian faith have the capacity to act responsibly; thus, we want to cooperate with people of all faiths (or none) who identify with our mission. Avoiding the perils of both legalistic moralism and moral relativism, Acta Sanctorum contributes to the spiritual and moral renewal of society. We are committed to approaching vexing ethical and moral issues with conviction and courage, but also humility, believing that self-righteous and triumphalistic attitudes are antithetical to the spirit of true religion and prevent the creation of community.

We consider democracy, with all of its flaws, to be the political system within which freedom and just peace have the best opportunity to prosper. The human ability to act justly makes democracy possible, but the human proclivity to act unjustly makes democracy necessary. A vibrant civil society is indispensable to a functioning and stable democracy, and religious communities play an important role in its construction and preservation. While we adhere to the concept of separation of Church and State, we also recognize that faith and religion are not simply private matters and hold that religious voices should not be a priori excluded from the public square. Acta Sanctorum has a non-ideological approach to politics and seeks to maintain a critical and creative distance from "all the kingdoms of the world" in its social and political reflection.

ACTA SANCTORUM, Inc., 926 East 61st Street, Chicago, IL 60637, USA
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