The Evolution of Catholic Social Ethics by Fr. Frank Colborn

A guest contribution from Fr. Juan Romero

I invite Catholic Labor Network members to check out Fr. Frank Colborn’s  The Evolution of Catholic Social Ethics From the Palaeolithic to Pope Francis, recently published by WIPF & STOCK. In spite of its great breadth, the work is succinct at fewer than 200 pages.

Fr. Frank Colborn is an octogenarian priest of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles who did doctoral studies in Rome where he was ordained at the end of 1963. He is a classmate and friend who taught dogmatic theology in the seminary for several years. We were collaborators in parish ministry in ELA during the late ‘70s. His “street creds” include participating in the Chicano Moratorium (50 years ago!) joining 10,000 marchers protesting the disproportionate number of Mexican Americans killed in the battlefields of Southeast Asia. He was also an active supporter of the organizing efforts of Cesar Chavez and the UFW. He drafted a resolution in support of the Grape-Lettuce Boycotts signed by about twenty-five priests and published in a paid advertisement of the Archdiocesan newspaper THE TIDINGS. Fr. Frank was a strong promoter and participant in UNO, the broad-based community organization to which our parish (along with twenty plus others) participated. Moreover, we were members of the same Jesus Caritas priests’ support group that met together monthly for almost half a century in southern California. Fr. Frank founded our group. I admire and appreciate his talent for profound and clear thinking that he comfortably articulates in a comprehensible yet simple manner.