World Day of the Poor


Sunday, November 14, marks the fifth celebration of the World Day of the Poor. The Day was instituted by Pope Francis to urge the Church and the faithful to ‘go out’ to encounter poverty in the various ways it manifests itself in the modern world and to reach out to those most in need. This year the motto chosen to promote the Day comes from Saint Mark’s Gospel: “The poor you will always have with you” (Mark 14:7).


Because the cry of the poor and the cry of Earth are inextricably bound, Pope Francis has chosen to launch the Laudato Sí Action Platform (LSAP) on the World Day of the Poor.  Pope Francis asks us, “What kind of world do we want to leave to those who come after us, to children who are growing up?” (LS 160).  This challenge of Pope Francis leads us to respond to the call for transformation set forth in Laudato Si.  The tasks are great, seemingly never-ending.  Our invitation to all – communities and individuals – is that we consider all of our actions through the lens of Integral Ecology.

This year, Pope Francis has invited us to be part of a seven-year journey to Integral Ecology as the new paradigm of justice. Integral Ecology is a concept that reflects the many relationships that keep a system intact, whole, and healthy. It looks at a comprehensive picture of reality and is essential to our understanding the interconnectedness of the whole. This paradigm respects our unique place as human beings in this world as well as our relationship to all which surrounds us. No issue is an isolated event but is part of the web of relationships.  Let us embrace Pope Francis’ call and join in the efforts to preserve our common home.