Financial Investments

Q. Over the years my modest financial investment has been reinvested in numerous subcompanies. I am concerned about the possibility of my funds being used for causes not compatible with Catholic teachings. Is there an obligation on my part to try to track the use of these investments?

A. Here’s a reply from Msgr. M. Francis Mannion:

Certainly, the general moral law requires that we be responsible for our actions and

for the way in which we cooperate with other in the commission of good and evil. The immorality of an action extends not only to the person who commits it but to those who cooperate with it or are neutral about it.

The moral person is called to have a sense of responsibility for the source of his or her income. Income derived from sources that offend against the good of society and the moral law of Christ is itself morally tainted.

While your desire to avoid the situation wherein your investment might be further invested in enterprises that go against Christian morality is commendable, you say that you would not know where to begin in trying to sort all of this out. Certainly, if something problematic comes to your attention, you would be obliged to act.

However, there is no obligation to go to impossible lengths in ensuring that all your subinvestments are moral.