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The Poor You Will Always Have With You

by Brian Dwyer

On this 5th World Day of the Poor, Pope Francis elaborates on Jesus’ message in Mark 14:7, “the poor you will always have with you.”

Pope Francis says, “This caused great amazement and gave rise to two different interpretations. The first was indignation on the part of some of those present. The second interpretation was that of Jesus, and it makes us appreciate the profound meaning of the woman’s act. He says: “Let her alone. Why do you trouble her? She has done a beautiful thing to me.” (Mark 14:6).

Furthermore, the Pope indicates “The poor, always and everywhere, evangelize us, because they enable us to discover in new ways the true face of the Father. Jesus not only sides with the poor; he also shares their lot.”

The Pope calls for a different approach to poverty and the poor. “With great humility, we should confess that we are often incompetent when it comes to the poor. We talk about them in the abstract. The poor are to be embraced, not counted.”

“How evangelical it would be if we could say with all truth: we too are poor, because only in this way will we truly be able to recognize them, to make them part of our lives and an instrument of our salvation.”

You are invited to read the full text of the Pope’s remarks here: World Day of the Poor 2021

Brian Dwyer is the Director of the Canadian Augustinian Centre for Social Justice.  Learn more here.

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