The Dignity of the Human Person and the Concept of Freedom in the Church

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First, the definition of a human person as the Church sees it is that they see men and women as the living image of God Himself, the image of His plan. They have received a part of God's dignity. The Church invites all people to recognize in everyone a brother or sister "for whom Christ died". A human individual possesses the dignity of a person, who is not just something but someone. He is capable of self-knowledge, self-possession, and of freely communicating with other persons. He is called by grace to offer his Creator a response of faith and love.

Human faculties: The Catholic social doctrine of the Church is based on the concept of society, which has been created according to a specific cultural model.

Man is a rational being, and this is why he is similar to God. He was created free and has power and possession of his own acts. The notion of human freedom is the power, rooted in reason and will, to act or not, and so to perform deliberate actions on their own responsibility. Freedom attains its perfection when it is directed towards God. Without it, we cannot speak about morality or moral responsibility. It is the capacity to choose. God gave us the right to share an eternal union with Him, which happens when we choose ways that are in harmony with His plan. Christian morality and God's law are given to us for the pursuit of happiness. God gave us the intelligence and the capacity to act freely. We are free to say "yes" to God, but many people today understand human freedom as the ability to make a choice, with no objective norm or good as a goal. By deviating from the moral law, man violates his own freedom, becomes imprisoned within himself, and rebels against divine truth.

-Natural freedom: Exclusive patrimony of those creatures gifted with intelligence or reason. It is the faculty of choosing between those means which are appropriate to accomplish a certain end. Each of us is responsible for our acts, and we are free to decide if we want to return to God.

-Moral freedom: Believes that mankind is absolutely free, to decide by himself what is objectively good or bad. Freedom, as a faculty, should be applied exclusively to the truth and goodness. The nature of human freedom includes the necessity to obey a higher and eternal reason, which is the authority of God.

Concept of human dignity: The person is sacred, made in the image of God. Each person has a human condition and the ability to practice virtues in regard to God, to become the person he wants. But we are free to decide if we want to follow Him or not. There is tension between virtue and vice, good and evil. A just society can become a reality only when it is based on the respect of the dignity of the human person. The person represents the ultimate end of society. It is necessary that public authorities keep careful watch so that restrictions placed on freedom placed on personal activity will never become harmful to personal dignity, but guaranteeing the effective practicability of human rights. All this, once more, is based on the vision of man as a person, that is to say, as an active and responsible subject of his own growth process, together with the community to which he belongs.

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