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     Home > Charity and Solidarity  >  2013-06-20 16:24:04
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Pope to FAO: More must be done to end scandal of starvation

June 20, 2013: “Something more can and must be done” for the millions of people who are “still suffering and dying of starvation”, something which is “truly scandalous” in this day and age. Moreover, the current global crisis cannot “continue to be used as an alibi” for people, states and institutions to shirk their responsibility in helping the poor and hungry of the world.

This was the focus of Pope Francis address Thursday morning to the 400 participants at the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization Conference.

Meeting them in the Vatican’s Clementine hall, Pope Francis noted that the purpose of the encounter was “to share the idea that something more can and must be done in order to provide a new stimulus to international activity on behalf of the poor, inspired by something more than mere goodwill or, worse, promises which all too often have not been kept”. “The crisis will not be completely over until situations and living conditions are examined in terms of the human person and human dignity”.

“In this regard, there is a need to oppose the shortsighted economic interests and the mentality of power of a relative few who exclude the majority of the world’s peoples, generating poverty and marginalization and causing a breakdown in society. There is likewise a need to combat the corruption which creates privileges for some and injustices for many others.” He said.

Citing the example of the Good Samaritan in the Gospel he said the Samaritan is not prompted by philanthropy or the fact that he has money at his disposal, but by a desire to identify with the person he helps: he wants to share his lot. Indeed, after providing for the man’s care, he announces that he will return to inquire after his health. What is involved here is more than mere compassion.

He assured the gathering that the Catholic Church, with all her structures and institutions, was at their side in this effort, which is aimed at building concrete solidarity, and that the Holy See follows with interest and encourages the initiatives and activities undertaken by FAO.


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