It’s not only the poor among us that stand in need of equality and justice. We all need equality and justice.
We live in a world where we allow thousands to die daily from hunger and malnutrition, even when we know there’s far more than enough food to feed everyone. That is more than injustice.
Until the hungry get fed, and all of our human family has a place at the table there is no equality and there is no justice. And I would add, not much humanity, either.
In the 10th chapter of Gospel of John, Jesus said that He came that we might have life in all its fullness. When I read that passage I understand that life in all its fullness includes sufficient food and shelter and all the other necessary resources to have a full and complete life.
That’s why I agree with Sister Joan Chittister. Those claiming to be Pro-Life need to be more than just Pro-Birth. They need to be truly Pro-Life. And that includes supporting policies that ensure a child has those vital resources necessary for a full and complete life.
Until this is done, Pro-Life is an intentional misnomer, a movement both spiritually suspect and morally indefensible.
I have spent over 35 years working with, and walking along side, the poor and hungry. I have seen some poor here in our country who expect help and who have been taught by our welfare system that they deserve whatever they can get. But these are a minority.
I have seen far more who struggle to climb out of poverty. This is especially true in other countries. Nothing is more heartbreaking than to watch a mother holding on to an infant dying of hunger. There is a pain in her eyes that time cannot erase.
The tragedy is compounded by knowing she has done everything in her power to keep that child alive. The poor are not lazy, not in my experience. In reality, they will do anything possible to escape the deadly trap of poverty, and that includes working far harder and longer than most of us do.
Thus endeth the sermon for today.