Pope Francis is an excellent teacher. He’s a classical Jesuit, and has himself taught in high school (chemistry and literature, I hear) in Argentina.
An effective pedagogue sets a few clear goals for his class. “Professor” Francis sure has done so for the Church, for the world, for all God’s children.
Among his goals is a call to love and serve the poor. No surprise, since this is a clear, clean goal of Jesus in the gospels.
This month of January presents us a chance to grow in our love and service of the poor.
January 20th is the birthday of the Reverend Martin Luther King, a man admired by Pope Francis, a man prophetic in his summons to racial justice and equal opportunity for the poor.
Then, January 22 is the Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of the Unborn Baby. Is anyone more vulnerable, more fragile, more in need of love, care, and protection than the unborn baby in her mother’s womb?
January 26 – February 2 finds us again in the Feeding Our Neighbor Campaign, as we come together in the cold to collect food to stock our shelters, soup kitchens, and parish pantries, responding to the Lord who said, “When I was hungry you gave me to eat.”
And, January 26 – February 1 is Catholic Schools Week. The experts tell us that one of the tried-and-true ways of helping the poor escape a trapped-life is by educating the children in one of our excellent Catholic schools. They’re really the best “War on Poverty” programs around.
Not bad messages — from Jesus and Pope Francis — this first week of the year.