Tuesday, October 25, 2022

"The Preferential Option for the Poor" - Homily for the 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time, 2022


“The Preferential Option for the Poor” – Homily for the 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time, 2022


Our First reading today from Sirach almost exactly spells out the Catholic Church’s teaching on the preferential option for the poor.


In that first reading, Sirach says “Though not unduly partial toward the weak, yet the Lord hears the cry of the oppressed.


When the Church speaks about the need for each of us to have a preferential option for the poor, it says “the preferential option for the poor…must embrace the immense multitudes of the hungry, the needy, the homeless, those without health care and, above all, those without hope of a better future” (St. John Paul II as found in the “Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church”)


As Catholics, we also need to be working directly with the poor in our community.  There are all different types of poverty, not just monetary, but also spiritual poverty, and poverty of relationships.  What are we doing ourselves to encounter the poor face to face in an attempt to show them the love of Christ?


As Catholics, we might be tempted to say that the poor in our community are taken care of by the government, but the Catholic Church teaches that “The principle of subsidiarity, (which is caring for the poor locally) is opposed to welfare assistance…[because] the Social Assistance State leads to a loss of human energies and an inordinate increase of public agencies…”


As Catholics, we also need to be people who are supporting the poor all over the world, particularly supporting Catholic missionary efforts around the world, who are working with the poorest of the poor. 


The Catholic Church is clearly calling each one of us to do our own part, to have contact with the poor ourselves, and support the care of the poor throughout the world!


Let us embrace this call to care for the poor everywhere, and let us embrace that call with joy!

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