Pope Leo XIII is credited as being the founder of Catholic Social Teaching. He would have been appalled by the credit. He intended nothing other than to apply to current concerns what Jesus taught his apostles and what they handed down to their successors. His thoughts prescind not from the nature of the spanking new modern state, nor from social advances sometimes more apparent than real, but from the changeless nature of man, discoverable both by reason and by humble attention to the revealed word of God. Leo never supposed that one could devise any Social Teaching without understanding what a society is to begin with, which requires that we understand what human beings are, and why they are—for what end God made them, male and female, in His image and likeness. Leo surveys the world from the mountaintop of the faith—not from the mercurial ingenuity of a vain scholar, or the meddlesome pride of an innovator.
Seriously, though, the article is well written and the intro hook is delightfully skilled.