US Catholicism and Economic Justice: 1919–1929
After the 1929 Wall Street Crash and during the Great Depression, the US National Catholic Welfare Conference published three fundamental documents on the economic situation. The US bishops were inspired by the Catholic Social teaching and by the ideas of Mgr. John A. Ryan, among the most influential US Catholic Social reformers and a great supporter of FDR’S New Deal. By analysing documents kept at Vatican Secret Archives, F. D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and at the Archives of Catholic University of America, this paper aims at highlighting and discussing the role played by the US Catholic Church during the Great Depression, underlying its frequent critical attitude towards the American ‘economic system’ and its thought about ‘errors and distortions’ of Capitalism.