Modern “wisdom” urges people to crowd into cities or their suburbs, to have few children, to live on credit. It teaches them to regard industrialism as inevitable, and to view a life of speed and noise as both normal and desirable. The Catholic Church teaches the contrary. She proclaims rather that life on the land, the raising of large families, the possession of real wealth over artificial tokens, concern for the needs of men and not those of machines, and a focus on the life to come, constitute the only way to true happiness and contentment.
The Church and the Land is a collection of essays and articles by England’s famous Dominican Distributist. De facto “chaplain” to the Distributists and the Distributist movement, Fr. McNabb was in many ways the most passionate and fervent of those seeking reform of economic life in the name of truly human values. In over 40 short essays, Fr. McNabb tackles subjects as diverse and yet unified as industrialism, morality and economics, working conditions, and the role of the state in shaping and defending the proper economic conditions. Fr. McNabb’s is a common and yet unique voice within the Distributist tradition, for he represents the voice of the Church, with its characteristic concern for morality and the salvation of souls, in economic as well as all other aspects of man’s daily life. Originally published: London, 1926.