09: Tim Busch: Is Catholicism Anti-Capitalist?


Catholic social teaching is rooted in the gospel. It was not developed into a systematic set of principles, however, until the pontificate of Leo XIII at the end of the 19th century. Since then, popes and magisterial documents have developed a body of teachings related to capital, labor, economics, and the dignity of work – all rooted in the dignity of the human person.

Orange County attorney and philanthropist Tim Busch is firmly rooted in the worlds of faith and finance, of evangelization and the entrepreneurial spirit. He is the founder of The Busch Firm in Irvine, CA, established in 1979, and he owns and operates eleven hotels throughout the United States. With Robert Spitzer, S.J., Tim and his wife Steph co-founded the Magis Institute, which administers the Reason and Faith Center using modern astrophysics to prove the existence of God. In 2016, the Busch School of Business and Economics was established at Catholic University of America, in recognition of Tim and Steph’s generous support of the school. He also spearheads the Napa Institute annual conference in Napa, CA each summer.

In this interview, we talk about the ways in which financial health and prosperity can be leveraged on behalf of real-world help for the poor – beyond charitable alms. In what sense is profit “good”? In what ways can the poor be liberated through entrepreneurism and programs of self-sustenance? And what about the charge that the Catholic Church supports socialism? Tim Busch digs into all of it.


A Catechism for Business: Tough Ethical Questions and Insights from Catholic Teaching, ed. by Andre Abela and Joseph Capizzi

Reclaiming Catholic Social Teaching by Anthony Esolen

Saints and Social Justice: A Guide to Changing the World by Brandon Vogt


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