|Usury and Profiteering|
by Albrect Dürer
The changes that the social teaching on usury has undergone compound the problem of teaching effectively on proper lending practices. The one constant has been concern for the welfare of the poor. The primary reason that some kinds of low-interest loans are permissible is because, in the current economic system, these can actually help the poor directly, rather than hindering or enslaving them. Other high-interest loans practiced in this economy remain usurious – even sinful in their oppression of the poor – and pastors should again condemn these practices forcefully. Radically, loans should exist primarily for the benefit of the borrower, not the lender. The Church must constantly seek economic justice and condemn economic injustice on behalf of the poor. In the present economic situation, that may no longer mean a unilateral condemnation of all kinds of interest taking, but it must still mean condemning usurious interest.