Deus Caritas Est

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In today’s high-tech, fast-paced world, love is often por­trayed as being sep­a­rate from Church teach­ing. With his first encycli­cal, Pope Bene­dict XVI hopes to over­turn that per­cep­tion and describe the essen­tial place of love in the life of the Church. The Holy Father explains the var­i­ous dimen­sions of love, high­light­ing the dis­tinc­tions between “eros” and “agape,” Jesus as the incar­nate love of God, and the scrip­tur­al law of love. In part two, he links the Church’s char­i­ta­ble work with the love of God as Trin­i­ty, not­ing that the Church must express love through acts of jus­tice and char­i­ty. This encycli­cal is an ide­al reflec­tion for reli­gious and civic lead­ers, those prepar­ing for mar­riage, and those engaged in jus­tice and char­i­ta­ble work.