In the Gospel, Jesus presents the poor as a wealth for the world. He shows that charity to the poor is a privileged way to encounter Jesus Christ in the world.
“Amen, I say to you, what you did not do for one of these least ones, you did not do for me.” (Mt 25:45).
In the Gospel, Jesus presents the poor as a wealth for the world and does not reveal charity to the poor as just another thing to do, but as a privileged way to encounter Jesus Christ in the world.
Furthermore, we are called to encounter the loneliness of the poor of this world, a loneliness Jesus felt on the cross. This loneliness was painful for Jesus and the poor participate in that pain. The challenge for us is to not only accompany the poor, but also share with them a certain solidarity, feeling their pain and loneliness.
In his message for the 5th World Day of the Poor, Pope Francis invites us to see the poor as a gift to us, recalling that “The poor, always and everywhere, evangelize us, because they enable us to discover in new ways the true face of the Father. Besides participating in the sensus fidei [sense of the faithful], they know the suffering Christ through their own sufferings. It is necessary that we all let ourselves be evangelized by them. The new evangelization is an invitation to recognize the salvific power of their lives and to place them at the center of the Church’s journey.”
Let us pray to God the Father for the courage to take this invitation seriously, seeing the face of God in the poor, as well as helping the poor in any way that we can.
– Beatriz Lisboa
Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network (Portugal)