THE SERVANT GENERAL
OUR THEME FOR 2015
NO ONE IN NEED - 3
Today’s reading: Acts 4:32-37
The first Christian community established on the day of Pentecost
solved the problem of poverty, with poverty defined as lack
of basic needs. In that community, “there was no needy
person among them” (v.34a). Why? Because “those
who owned property or houses would sell them, bring the proceeds
of the sale, and put them at the feet of the apostles, and
they were distributed to each according to need.” (v.34b-35).
Why did the property owners do that and why did the apostles
distribute their money to others who were in need? Because
“the community of believers was of one heart and mind,
and no one claimed that any of his possessions was his own,
but they had everything in common.” (v.32).
about poverty today? Widespread poverty is caused by a number
distribution of the world’s goods.
and unconcern for the poor by the haves.
greed and corruption in the capitalistic system.
in the socialistic system, rather than providing jobs and
and colonialist western powers exploiting the poor, corrupting
their governments, exploiting their natural resources, imposing
reproductive health and gender ideologies, rather than providing
authentic aid and development.
conflicts that displace people and destroy production and
How can the above be summed up? It is a lack of love for neighbor.
It is not being our brother’s keeper. What is the antidote?
What do we see in the life of the first Christian community?
They were stewards, who knew that everything belonged to
God and was to be used according to God’s purposes.
loved their neighbors as themselves, and so would not stand
for others being in need if they had the means to fill that
put on the mind and heart of Jesus, thus uniting them in
vision and purpose, and allowing them to act according to
the highest Christian virtues, such as empathy, fraternal
concern, mercy, compassion, self-denial, generosity.
world of course is much more complex. But the principles remain
Selflessness rather than selfishness.
rather than indifference to or exploitation of neighbor,
especially the poor.
rather than accumulation of resources.
rather than ownership.
rather than worldliness and corruption.
rather than unconcern for my brother.
development rather than exploitation.
rather than conflict.
can all the above begin to happen? It is by people meeting
and knowing Christ, then starting to live Christ. It is being
renewed and transformed according to the mind and heart of
Christ. It is being empowered by the Holy Spirit. And how
can all that happen? We need to share Christ to the world.
Just like the apostles, we too are sent.
great power the apostles bore witness to the resurrection
of the Lord Jesus, and great favor was accorded them all.”
Please read, study and discuss the book “Bringing Glad
Tidings to the Poor.” This is our basic catechetical
text for our work with the poor.