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Catholic Word of the Day: MATERIAL CO-OPERATION, 05-11-12 ^ | 05-11-12 | Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary

Posted on 05/11/2012 8:17:31 AM PDT by Salvation

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Assisting in another's wrongdoing without approving it. The help given assists a person to perform the sinful action, although of itself the help is not wrong. To provide necessary information to a thief, because one is forced to, would be material co-operation. Material co-operation with another person's evil action is allowed provided certain conditions are fulfilled. Such collaboration is licit because the co-operator does not internally approve of the sin of another, nor does he or she approve of the sinful use to which the assistance is put by the other. The following principles are standard in resolving this complex moral issue:

Two kinds of material co-operation are to be distinguished: immediate and mediate.

In immediate material co-operation, one person actually does something morally wrong with another person. Thus if a surgeon and an assistant are both engaged in actually aborting a fetus, the co-operation of the assistant is immediate. Immediate material co-operation in the sinful act of another is always wrong. It is pointless to say that a person who is not under duress performs a criminal action without intending to do so.

Mediate material co-operation is concurring in the wrong action of another, but not in such a way that one actually performs the act with the other or agrees with the evil intention of the other. While doing something that is in itself good or indifferent, a person rather gives an occasion to another's sin, or contributes something by way of assistance.

The morality of mediate material co-operation is to be judged on the principle of the double effect. In applying this principle, there are four basic norms to be observed. Among these norms is the obligation not to intend the evil effect (as would really be intended in immediate material co-operation) and the need for sufficient reason to permit the evil effect. The presence of a proportionate reason is not sufficient to allow what is called material co-operation.


All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

TOPICS: Apologetics; Catholic; Moral Issues; Theology
KEYWORDS: catholic; morality; sin
There are many times when material cooperation is a sin.
1 posted on 05/11/2012 8:17:32 AM PDT by Salvation
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The principle that says it is morally allowable to perform an act that has at least two effects, one good and one bad. It may be used under the following conditions: 1. the act to be done must be good in itself or at least morally indifferent; by the act to be done is meant the deed itself taken independently of its consequences; 2. the good effect must not be obtained by means of the evil effect; the evil must be only an incidental by-product and not an actual factor in the accomplishment of the good; 3. the evil effect must not be intended for itself but only permitted; all bad will must be excluded form the act; 4. there must be a proportionately grave reason for permitting the evil effect. At least the good and evil effects should be nearly equivalent. All four conditions must be fulfilled. If any one of them is not satisfied, the act is morally wrong.

An example of the lawful use of the double effect would be the commander of a submarine in wartime who torpedoes an armed merchant vessel of the enemy, although he foresees that several innocent children on board will be killed. All four required conditions are fulfilled: 1. he intends merely to lessen the power of the enemy by destroying an armed merchant ship. He does not wish to kill the innocent children; 2. his action of torpedoing the ship is not evil in itself; 3. the evil effect (the death of the children) is not the cause of the good effect (the lessening of the enemy's strength); 4. there is sufficient reason for permitting the evil effect to follow, and this reason is administering a damaging blow to those who are unjustly attacking his country.

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

2 posted on 05/11/2012 8:21:49 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: JRandomFreeper; Allegra; BlackVeil; Straight Vermonter; Cronos; SumProVita; AnAmericanMother; ...

Catholic Word of the Day – links will be provided later by another FReeper.  (Would anyone like to help with this?)


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Material Co-operation





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3 posted on 05/11/2012 8:23:12 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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