Since the Church in the Middle Ages claimed to teach "in all its fulness every doctrine that men ought to be brought to know," it was obligated to enunciate and propagate a set of definite principles for guiding medieval men as, in one way or another, they engaged in making a living. The Church did, in fact; enter the Middle Ages with a set of general presuppositions regarding economic activity, a legacy from its first five hundred years of existence. The way in which it sought to apply these presuppositions during the succeeding thousand years is a good example of the Church's method of handling secular problems. [excerpt]
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Bloom, Robert L. et al. "6. The Church in the Economic Sphere. Pt. III: The Medieval Church." Ideas and Institutions of Western Man (Gettysburg College, 1958), 57-64.