Wednesday, January 6, 2016

"Just Thoughts" for January 10, 2015. Poverty Awareness Month

Krista and Ed Zivkovich have written the following "Just Thoughts" article for next Sunday's bulletin:

Just Thoughts
Poverty Awareness Month
January 2016

The United States Catholic Bishops have again designated the month of January as
Poverty Awareness Month.  An initiative of the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, Poverty Awareness Month calls attention to the many problems associated with poverty in the United States. In the richest country on our earth, 1 in 7 American households were food insecure in 2015, 47 million people live in poverty. 

What can we do to help eradicate poverty?  "Two Feet of Love in Action" based on two of Pope Benedict's reflections ( Feet of Love in Action), is a tool to remind us that there are two different but complementary ways to put faith into action.  First, in Christian charity we must respond to the immediate needs of people. These are the Corporal Works of Mercy that Fr. Steve wrote about last week in his Pastor column.  In our parish we have several programs that target the problem of hunger and food insecurity and other ministries that help people in need.  These programs are generously supported by our parishioners.

The second of the "Two Feet of Love" is to do what we can to address the root causes of poverty.  To travel on a path toward social justice.  It involves taking action to change the social institutions that perpetuate those circumstances which prevent people from lifting themselves out of poverty.  Such things as working to improve the educational system, advocating for a living wage, or supporting environmental protection laws would all help those struggling to break the grip of poverty on their lives.  We are called to plant both feet firmly as we walk together, putting faith and love in action, as we focus on our destination, the Kingdom of God.

"We are pilgrims on a journey, we are brothers on the road; we are here to help each other, walk the mile and bear the load."  (Excerpt from The Servant Song, Richard Gillard, 1977)

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