Our faith is not just the number of things that we believe in or the number of prayers we say, or the number of sacraments we receive. Our faith is more, or should be more than that. Our faith should be a faith that is alive and that gives life to others. Our faith should be action.
That is why the work of mercy is so important because what we believe is reflected in the things we do.
The message of Jesus is clear. His gospel is to serve especially those who cannot repent and is perfectly expressed by the prophet: “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and the opening of the prison to those who are bound.” (Isaiah 61:1). The Village House work is precisely this. It gives to some people in need a message of hope, and in doing so we make God present in our midst.
Some people may ask how the little that we can do will change the situation of the society in which we live? What we do is so little to make an impact. And you might be right… it is little but can make an impact on those few we serve and on the ones who serve. It can be little but still make a change.
Since the beginning, the Christian communities were dedicatd to serve and spoor the act of Charities. Paul in some of his letters asked the communities and encouraged them to Remember the poor: “They desired only that we should remember the poor, the very thing which I also was eager to do.” (Galatians 2:10)
What I am asking you to do is to help the Village House to host those in need. To give them more than bread and a place to sleep, but to show love and kindness and the face of God.
“There are many in the world who are dying for a piece of bread but there are many more dying for a little love. The poverty in the West is a different kind of poverty — it is not only a poverty of loneliness but also of spirituality. There’s a hunger for love, as there is a hunger for God.” (Mother Teresa).
All of us who have received more, have the responsibility to give more… to give our time, our love, and to use the gift given to us to serve with kindness. I encourage all of St. Martin community — children, adults, elderly… everyone should be involved. While other ministries can be set aside because you may believe you don’t have the gift to be a lector or a Eucharistic minister, this one cannot. We are called to serve those in need.