We pray that volunteer non-profit organizations committed to human development find people dedicated to the common good and ceaselessly seek out new paths to international cooperation.
The world needs more volunteers, as communities continue to struggle to serve the most vulnerable. The past few years has clearly shown that isolation from each other is detrimental to society and can lead to even greater problems.
Pope Francis lamented this trend of withdrawing from society that has come from the pandemic in his Christmas Message for 2021, “Our capacity for social relationships is sorely tried; there is a growing tendency to withdraw, to do it all by ourselves, to stop making an effort to encounter others and do things together.”
As the world tries to return to “normal,” a renewed volunteerism needs to be a central focus. When addressing volunteers from Sardegna Solidale in 2018, Pope Francis explained the importance of volunteerism to society, “The culture of solidarity and gratuitousness qualifies volunteerism and contributes in a concrete way to the construction of a fraternal society, at the center of which is the human person.”
St. John Paul II also reflected on the importance of being a volunteer in a speech for the Year of Volunteer Work in 2001.
He said, “What makes a volunteer dedicate his/her life to others? First of all, the innate movement of the heart that inspires every human being to help his fellow man. It is a law of existence. A volunteer experiences a joy that goes far beyond what he has done when he succeeds in giving himself freely to others.”
Our culture needs to recover a greater concern for those around us, not spending our existence in isolation, but helping each other without any pay or reward in mind.
Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network (United States)
Philip Kosloski is the Digital Content Manager for the Pope's Worldwide Prayer Network (USA) and is also a spirituality writer for Aleteia.org and has been featured on such places as The Huffington Post, Crisis Magazine, The Catholic Herald, Catholic Exchange, National Catholic Register and EWTN Radio.