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Industry and the Church.

20th-c. industry has presented new problems to the ch. in the application of moral principles to a complex economic structure. Rapid industrialization and urbanization, increase of large corporations and holding companies, impersonal control of industry, absentee ownership, managerial direction of the capitalist system, concentration of wealth, and increasing use of natural resources have created human and moral problems which concern the ch. Areas of strain are to be found not only in labor-management relations, but also in the degree of interest and control by industry and its leaders of civic welfare, philanthropy, production and consumption of goods, and the ownership of property in the manufacturing and financial colossus which governs industry. These, as well as benefactions of industrial giants, are to be viewed in light of Lv 19:13; Jer 22:13; Ja 5:1–6.

Papal encyclicals have warned against abuse of wealth and power as fertile ground for radical economic and pol. ideologies. Prots. are increasingly interested and active in Christian industrial reconstruction. The ch. ministers to industrialist and laborer and applies the ethical teachings of Scripture to both. JD

See also Capital and Labor; Foundation, Religious; Labor and the Church.

A. I. Abell, The Urban Impact on American Protestantism 1865–1900 (Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1943); E. B. Chaffee, The Protestant Churches and the Industrial Crisis (New York, 1933); J. Daniel, The Church and Labor-Management Problems of Our Day (Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, 1947) and Labor, Industry, and the Church (St. Louis, 1957); T. C. Graebner, The Business Man and the Church (Clinton, South Carolina, 1942); F. H. Knight and T. W. Merriam, The Economic Order and Religion (New York, 1945); H. F. May, Protestant Churches and Industrial America (New York, 1949); S. Miller and J. F. Fletcher, The Church and Industry (New York, 1930); R. H. Tawney, Religion and the Rise of Capitalism (New York, 1926); A. W. Taylor, Christianity and Industry in America (New York, 1933).

Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
©Concordia Publishing House, 2000, All rights Reserved. Reproduced with Permission

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The Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod

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Content Reproduced with Permission

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