Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 449 – Part I.

YOUCAT Question n. 449 – Part I. What significance do the poor have for Christians?

(Youcat answer) Love for the poor must be in every age the distinguishing mark of Christians. The poor deserve not just a few alms; they have a claim to justice. For Christians there is a special obligation to share their goods. Our example in love for the poor is Christ.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2443) God blesses those who come to the aid of the poor and rebukes those who turn away from them: "Give to him who begs from you, do not refuse him who would borrow from you"; "you received without pay, give without pay" (Mt 5:42; 10:8). It is by what they have done for the poor that Jesus Christ will recognize his chosen ones (Cf. Mt 25:31-36). When "the poor have the good news preached to them," it is the sign of Christ's presence (Mt 11:5; cf. Lk 4:18).   

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Mt 5:3) - that is the first sentence in Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. There is material, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual poverty. Christians must look after the needy of this earth with great consideration, love, and perseverance. After all, on no other point will they be evaluated by Christ so decisively as on their way of treating the poor: “As you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me” (Mt 25:40).

 (CCC Comment)

(CCC 2445) Love for the poor is incompatible with immoderate love of riches or their selfish use: Come now, you rich, weep and howl for the miseries that are coming upon you. Your riches have rotted and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver have rusted, and their rust will be evidence against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up treasure for the last days. Behold, the wages of the laborers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, cry out; and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. You have lived on the earth in luxury and in pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter. You have condemned, you have killed the righteous man; he does not resist you (Jas 5:1-6).    

(This question: What significance do the poor have for Christians? is continued)

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