The Name of the Needy One at My Gate

Dear Parishioners and Visitors,

What the poor man Lazarus possessed was a soul, a name, and a desire “to be fed with what fell from the rich man’s table.” How many opportunities did the wealthy man have, one who was clothed “in fine linen and feasted sumptuously every day,” to alleviate the hunger pangs of the man with countless sores, who lay dying at the rich man’s gate?Moreover, in Jesus’ story, the one who lived the high life was simply identified as “a rich man”; whereas, the poor man had a name, ‘Lazarus’.

The rich one is not condemned for his wealth; rather, he is condemned because he chose to completely ignore the pain, suffering, and kindred humanity of Lazarus, who lay at the entrance to his lavish home. What is the name of the needy one at my gate?

“When a poor person dies of hunger,
it has not happened because God did not take care of him or her.
It has happened because neither you nor I wanted to give that person
what he or she needed.” —St. Teresa of Kolkata

In God’s loving kindness,

—fr. Chris, O.P.