Author Topic: Giving to the poor  (Read 953 times)

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Offline s2srea

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Giving to the poor
« on: April 25, 2012, 01:43:36 PM »
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  • I'm reading this book about St. Francis of Assisi. I was reading about the poor, and came across this line which got me thinking:

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    In an agricultural country poverty does not, as elsewhere, almost inevitably involve moral destitution, that degeneration of the entire human being which renders charity so difficult. Most of the poor persons whom Francis knew were in straits because of war, of bad harvests, or of illness.


    When I see a person panhandling on the side of the freeway, I'm usually have one of two thoughts- 1. Why is this guy panhandling? He seems young, fit and able. -OR- 2.  Poor fellow. Even if he is a drunk or druggie, he is in need.

    So it sort of depends what mood I'm in, I suppose as to whether I help them out or not. If someone is outside a convenience store, I will buy them some food instead of giving money. And, lastly, if a fellow is walking around selling pineapples or oranges, and I can tell they're not very well off, but at least doing what they can to survive, I usually givet them whatever's in my pocket for one of what they're selling.

    A priest once told me that if we thought someone would use the money for, lets say, alcohol, we can offer our intention up and give the money to the Church instead.

    What is your experience in this; what do you do?

    Offline Capt McQuigg

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #1 on: April 25, 2012, 02:07:53 PM »
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  • Quote from: s2srea
    A priest once told me that if we thought someone would use the money for, lets say, alcohol, we can offer our intention up and give the money to the Church instead.


    This is good advice.  

    I once was driving home late at night and went through an underpass and the panhandlers were apparently changing shift.  A van dropped a couple off and picked one up.

    Of course, if possible, a person could spearhead an internal church committee to start collecting money to order/procure a really nice statue of the Blessed Virgin for the interior of the Church (this would work particularly well if someone was part of the SSPX or a sede chapel).  The person spearheading the committee would organize timely activities for fundraising or just ask the priest if they could pass the basket once a month or maybe more until the committee had acquired $5000 or more.

    I think improving the beauty of a church is a very holy obligation.  

    Giving money to drunks is "dissipating" our sacred obligations.  





    Offline Graham

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #2 on: April 25, 2012, 02:09:25 PM »
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  • In these situations it can be hard to think well.

    I grew up in a bourgeois sort of family that didn't have a natural relationship - if that makes sense - with the poor. When confronted with beggars either studiously ignored them or, if feeling guilty, would give some change to the sorrier looking ones. But the sorriest looking beggars are often the least deserving. They're sorry looking because they spend that money on booze. And they're trying to manipulate your feelings.

    The point of reference when making these judgements isn't our own feelings, whether of relief from guilt and pity, of self-gratification, or even of sanctimony for refusing them their booze money. None of that is charity.

    As a general rule it makes more sense to give that money to soup kitchens or especially to local church-driven efforts. The latter will result in filled stomachs, evangelization, and a greater standing for the church in your neighbourhood.

    Offline Lighthouse

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #3 on: April 25, 2012, 02:54:52 PM »
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  • A few years ago I heard a Mass from an older, conservative priest. It was an Indult Mass. He said in his sermon that if one lived in the USA and worked, one already had an horrendous amount of money taken from his paychecks to fund social programs that were sometimes very obviously mismanaged.

    However that may be, we do end up diverting a goodly portion of our wages to "helping the poor", so the mandate to do even more was not always reasonable.

    Now, it seems to me that if one relies on this in an arrogant manner, he is no different than a pharisee, but on the other hand the Good Samaritan did leave a good deal of the money to help the poor traveler with the innkeeper to administer in a just manner.  Again, one might be required to go the extra mile to help his brother in some circumstances, but an American taxpayer would be somewhat less than aware if he were to constantly accuse himself of neglecting his duty.  

    Offline Malleus 01

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #4 on: April 25, 2012, 04:15:32 PM »
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  • Quote from: Lighthouse
    A few years ago I heard a Mass from an older, conservative priest. It was an Indult Mass. He said in his sermon that if one lived in the USA and worked, one already had an horrendous amount of money taken from his paychecks to fund social programs that were sometimes very obviously mismanaged.

    However that may be, we do end up diverting a goodly portion of our wages to "helping the poor", so the mandate to do even more was not always reasonable.

    Now, it seems to me that if one relies on this in an arrogant manner, he is no different than a pharisee, but on the other hand the Good Samaritan did leave a good deal of the money to help the poor traveler with the innkeeper to administer in a just manner.  Again, one might be required to go the extra mile to help his brother in some circumstances, but an American taxpayer would be somewhat less than aware if he were to constantly accuse himself of neglecting his duty.  


    I believe in Titheing to the Church so that the Church can carry forth the mission of Christ to go forth and teach all nations - feeding a single homeless man will give him a meal for a day - giving money to the Church so she can establish Charitable groups like St Vincent De Paul will feed thousands for years


    Offline Clelia

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #5 on: April 25, 2012, 05:15:32 PM »
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  • I liked that s2srea gave some food as one example instead of giving money.

    Here, if you open your billfold or purse in front of a beggar, we don't know if we will get mugged, killed, or thanked.

    We used to give out McD & BK food gift certificates, but it was often chucked into the street before our eyes. We stopped doing that.

    The no priests here do not want us to help panhandlers, and yes, they tell us to support the local soup kitchens and shelters instead. If it were only drunks and druggies; but we have families here who would rather sleep under a few bridges, even in the winter, than go into the shelters near the city, since here is abuse going on in these places, so we not support any of them.

    I like to give to the churches (that I believe to be are trustworthy) with poor boxes. I also feel that The Faith will be offered as well as food, as was already mentioned by Malleus 01.

    I am also open to others' suggestions here.

    Leaving the Boyz Club of little popes. SWAK.

    Offline s2srea

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #6 on: April 25, 2012, 05:17:46 PM »
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  • Quote from: Clelia
    The no priests here do not want us to help panhandlers, and yes, they tell us to support the local soup kitchens and shelters instead. If it were only drunks and druggies; but we have families here who would rather sleep under a few bridges, even in the winter, than go into the shelters near the city, since here is abuse going on in these places, so we not support any of them.


    How sad.

    Offline Clelia

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #7 on: April 25, 2012, 05:19:26 PM »
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  • Yes - with small children. It gets mighty cold here in the winters.
    Leaving the Boyz Club of little popes. SWAK.


    Offline Vladimir

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #8 on: April 25, 2012, 05:20:16 PM »
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  • Quote from: s2srea
    I'm reading this book about St. Francis of Assisi. I was reading about the poor, and came across this line which got me thinking:

    Quote
    In an agricultural country poverty does not, as elsewhere, almost inevitably involve moral destitution, that degeneration of the entire human being which renders charity so difficult. Most of the poor persons whom Francis knew were in straits because of war, of bad harvests, or of illness.


    When I see a person panhandling on the side of the freeway, I'm usually have one of two thoughts- 1. Why is this guy panhandling? He seems young, fit and able. -OR- 2.  Poor fellow. Even if he is a drunk or druggie, he is in need.

    So it sort of depends what mood I'm in, I suppose as to whether I help them out or not. If someone is outside a convenience store, I will buy them some food instead of giving money. And, lastly, if a fellow is walking around selling pineapples or oranges, and I can tell they're not very well off, but at least doing what they can to survive, I usually givet them whatever's in my pocket for one of what they're selling.

    A priest once told me that if we thought someone would use the money for, lets say, alcohol, we can offer our intention up and give the money to the Church instead.

    What is your experience in this; what do you do?


    Generally, I just  give them food - because the really needy ones will take it but the fakes, like another poster has mentioned, won't have anything to do with it. Food and water - a dollar or two at most.

    There's a habit of homeless people congregating around the steps of large churches all day and asking for money - they usually only beg for a dollar so I give it to them even though I imagine they've probably got enough money to eat for the day already. They are "regulars".



    Offline s2srea

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #9 on: April 25, 2012, 05:23:17 PM »
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  • Quote from: Vladimir
    Generally, I just  give them food - because the really needy ones will take it but the fakes, like another poster has mentioned, won't have anything to do with it. Food and water - a dollar or two at most.

    There's a habit of homeless people congregating around the steps of large churches all day and asking for money - they usually only beg for a dollar so I give it to them even though I imagine they've probably got enough money to eat for the day already. They are "regulars".


    Is it wrong to give to the poor money, where there is a high suspicion that they may indeed use it for booze or something else?

    Offline Vladimir

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #10 on: April 25, 2012, 05:31:41 PM »
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  • Quote from: s2srea
    Quote from: Vladimir
    Generally, I just  give them food - because the really needy ones will take it but the fakes, like another poster has mentioned, won't have anything to do with it. Food and water - a dollar or two at most.

    There's a habit of homeless people congregating around the steps of large churches all day and asking for money - they usually only beg for a dollar so I give it to them even though I imagine they've probably got enough money to eat for the day already. They are "regulars".


    Is it wrong to give to the poor money, where there is a high suspicion that they may indeed use it for booze or something else?


    No, I actually asked a priest on this one and he said that after you give the person the money it is their responsibility not yours. God will reward your good intention, even if the money is used for less than salutary things.

    It makes sense, but in all things prudence obviously.

    I've sometimes offered a dollar or two to homeless people that looked like druggies/addicts, but they actually turned down my offer - so looks can be deceiving.







    Offline Sigismund

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #11 on: April 25, 2012, 06:51:38 PM »
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  • I once attended a SVdP meeting at which the director of a local soup kitchen and shelter spoke.  It was an Evangelical group of some sort, and the director was minister and was actually called the "Pastor" of the facility rather than director.  Before becoming a minister, he had been an addict and homeless himself.  I have never forgotten something he said, and I will quote it as well as I can remember it:

    "If everyone I had asked for money back when I was on the street had given it to me, I would be dead now.  It all went to drugs.  You are not dong most homeless people any favors by giving them money directly.  Food is better, especially if you watch them eat it, but often food will be sold for money to use for drugs or alcohol.  Give money to organizations you can trust, and be familiar enough with shelters and soup kitchens in your area that you can tell people where they are."
    Stir up within Thy Church, we beseech Thee, O Lord, the Spirit with which blessed Josaphat, Thy Martyr and Bishop, was filled, when he laid down his life for his sheep: so that, through his intercession, we too may be moved and strengthen by the same Spir

    Offline Alex

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #12 on: April 25, 2012, 08:04:50 PM »
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  • I was thinking about the issue with the poor just this week and was going to ask pretty much the same thing as 2srea.

    Let me just tell you this for now - I almost had a nervous break down (not really but you get what I mean) dealing with the panhandler's and poor here. I'm on my cell now so I will tell you the details later, but let me just say that once where I had compassion, I don't anymore when I see the panhandler's.

    Offline Croix de Fer

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #13 on: April 25, 2012, 08:13:53 PM »
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  • A long time ago, I saw a man holding a sign "vietnam vet will work for food" at an intersection off a highway exit ramp while I was coming home from work. It was less than a mile from where I lived, so I grabbed a bunch of fruit and put it in a bag. I walked up to him and offered him the fruit; and I asked him, "will you be here tomorrow?" He said, "yes"; and I told him I'd bring him a job application. I made it very clear to him I'd meet him at the same spot - the same time - the next day, and he was in approval, and "thanked" me for it.  The next day he was not there, nor the following day. However, a few days later, I saw him at the following intersection off a highway exit ramp about 3 miles down from where I first met him. He was holding the same sign.














    Blessed be the Lord my God, who teacheth my hands to fight, and my fingers to war. ~ Psalms 143:1 (Douay-Rheims)

    Offline songbird

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    Giving to the poor
    « Reply #14 on: April 26, 2012, 06:42:52 PM »
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  • Isn't it sad!  We want to help and we think food, job and sometimes money.  I ran across a old book "The Manual of the St. Vincent De Paul Society."  I was expecting to read something about feeding the Poor. Boy, was I wrong.  Their main purpose was to go door to door to make sure that the residence had access to the Sacraments!  That was their main goal!  And still I did not read anything about food except in a few passages that they seldom did that.  Wow!!  They stated that they must go after the souls, to direct them to sacraments, for Graces, to change their lives in order to bring food to their own table.  Makes alot of sense.  Now, today, St. Vincent De Paul is for feeding the poor and etc. but they do more.  They serve the state with telephone numbers to birth control and abortion.  Yes, it is true.  Here in Phoenix, in 1996, St. Vincent De Paul had flyers on the walls, known as Baby AZ and state phone numbers.  The phone number was good for any family planning, contraceptives,sterlization and welfare, cash, food stamps you name it!  That welfare is still with us all over the nation, TANF.  Temporary assistance for Needy Families. The Phx dioceses had 5-6 Health Fairs with Planned Parenthood goodies and the dioceses deacons and staff signing up their parishioners for TANF.  And if you qualify, then in order to receive benefits, if anyone was able to conceive a child they had to have birth control or such, because the rules were, you could not get pregnant while receiving TANF, welfare.  I went to 3 of the Health Fairs with the help of 2 men, video taping and found out what I found out.  This is the New Order of the church.  Now, who  can you trust!!  I asked Dr. Baker of St. Vincent De Paul about the Baby AZ flyer in his clinic center and he said to me, they treat everyone and so all we    be treated as they wish.  He should have said, we are alive because we side with the Federal Gov't and so we serve them after   we take money for us to survive.  Note all the Catholic Charities, are they charities? or are they like St. Vincent De Paul?  Are they not United Way, March of Dimes with their sweet lovely words on the radio.  I suggest that we do as St. Vincent De Paul did, save souls to help souls.  And Know your Church and just don't give money, know who gets it and how the money is used.  

     

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