Carlos Alberto Sacheri and Christian civilization

The reestablishment of Christian civilization, affirms Carlos Alberto Sacheri“it will have as its primary purpose –according to the beautiful formula of Etienne Gilson– to form ‘an intelligence at the service of Christ the King’ by a return to the permanent sources of Greek and Christian philosophers, in particular to St Thomas (as it has been formally recommended in two different documents by the Second Vatican Council), and by a study and an action carried out in the light of the Social doctrine of the churchpractical doctrine, guide for the action of social and political leaders at all levels and in all activities of the social body” (“Human nature and cultural relativism”, in universities, October-November 1967, p. 67).

This quote, which appeared in the historic magazine universities from the Universidad Católica Argentina, it seems to us an excellent letter of introduction to the figure and the work of the Argentine philosopher Carlos Alberto Sacheri (October 22, 1933 – December 22, 1974). It is a representative fragment of the apostolic work in which he was committed throughout his life. so that Christ would reign in social lifeaccording to the liturgical solemnity of Christ the King instituted by the pope Pius XI in 1925 through the encyclical letter quas cousins.

Sacheri’s life, by the way, has been multifaceted. We could mention his family life, his university teaching, his written production, his political activity, among other aspects. The tragic circumstances of his death (it was murdered, in the presence of his familyby members of the Argentine terrorist group Ejército Revolucionario del Pueblo, ERP-22 de Agosto) have at times eclipsed the daily life of a patriot and an exceptional Catholic until the heroic exercise of virtues human and Christian. The witnesses who knew him as family, as friends, as students, etc., in addition to agreeing on the martyrdom character of his death as his last act of service for the reestablishment of the social reign of Christ in Argentina, his beloved Homeland, they highlight that goodness that lived naturally under the inspiration of divine grace.

Norberto Iannellione of his students in the Sociology major at the Argentine Catholic University, points out: “An important feature of Sacheri that moves is the modesty, the great humility that he transmitted. That combination of great intelligence, a solid education plus humility made everyone respect him, even if they did not think like him. He had a great intellectual and moral respect over the others ”.

And he adds: “He was very affable, patient. He even talked a lot with people who didn’t think like him, who had other ideas. I saw him a thousand times in the corridors with people who were the opposite of what he thought. He was a close man, although he was very tall and his presence commanded respect. Close and affable. And always with a smile. always teaching. Teaching, advising and training people. He was looking for not only the intellectual capacity of the people he was training, but also his moral disposition”.

The blog Sacheri Digital offers us a sober bio-bibliographical reference to Sacheri: “In the days of a university student and after ten years, he followed his father Jules Meinvielle, who was his main training, in the reading and study of Saint Thomas Aquinas. He graduated in Philosophy in 1957 and in 1961 he won the Conseil des Arts du Canada scholarship, in an international competition. He studied under the direction of charles dekoninck at the Laval University of Quebec (Canada), where in 1963 he obtained his degree in Philosophy, with a mention magna cum laude and his doctorate in Philosophy, with mention sum cum laude in 1968, with a thesis on Necessité et nature de la délibération [Necesidad y naturaleza de la deliberación]”.

In addition to being a researcher, he was a professor at various university institutions. It is worth highlighting his teaching in the Buenos Aires’ Universityin the early 70s of the 20th century in Argentina, in which he taught philosophy and history of philosophical ideas students of the Law degree in the introductory course. In 2016, the mimeographed note from 1972 was published by Ediciones Escipión (Mendoza) with the same title (here a short review) and under the supervision of Hector H. Hernandez (h), of Ricardo von Buren and of Martin Villalba.

His best-known publications are undoubtedly the natural order Y the underground church. As far as social matters are concerned, we could mention, among others, publications such as The family, legal institution? (1965-1966), Role of the State in the Social Economy (1967), State and education (1968), Saint Thomas and the social order (1974) and Commutative justice and the reciprocity of changes (1974).

Sacheri affirms, in the work cited at the beginning of this note, that Christian civilization “is nothing other than the plenitude of the socially accepted human and Christian values ​​that inform all institutions and all activities material and spiritual, moral and intellectual, technical and artistic. She is based on him consensus that the community lends to these values ​​and effectively translates into daily life. Its foundation is none other than natural law and the gospelaccording to the principle gratia non tollit naturam sed perficit eam: the fullness of the human is completed by the light of the supernatural order, expressed in the truths of faith and in the sacraments of salvation”.

Above we have mentioned the encyclical letter quas cousins of the Pope Pius XI. In 2025 it will be 100 years since its publication. Reading the writings of the Argentine philosopher Carlos Alberto Sacheri can be an excellent recommendation to continue supporting the Catholic truth of the Social Reign of Christ and fall into the account and promote the validity of Christian civilization.

Posted by the Cardinal Van Thuân International Observatory on the Social Doctrine of the Church.

Carlos Alberto Sacheri and Christian civilization