Suggestions for action
— Try to pinpoint the greatest needs, both material and spiritual, of those around you, and look for possible ways to solve them.
— Get information about the various social initiatives, big or small, near you and, in so far as possible, dedicated your time, or knowledge, or financial help, etc.
— Donate clothing in good condition to those who need it, or leftover food at home or provided by nearby restaurants.
Quotes from Sacred Scripture to reflect on
— Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; he who teaches, in his teaching; he who exhorts, in his exhortation; he who contributes, in liberality; he who gives aid, with zeal; he who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness (Rom 12:6-8).
— And the multitudes asked him, “What then shall we do?” And he answered them, “He who has two coats, let him share with him who has none; and he who has food, let him do likewise.” (Lk 3:10-11).
— And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me’ (Mt 25:40).
Quotes from Pope Francis to reflect on
— How can we, therefore, be witnesses of mercy? We do not think that it is done with great efforts or superhuman actions. No, it is not so. The Lord shows us a very simple path, made by small actions which, nonetheless, have great value in his eyes (Audience, 12 October 2016).
— There are also, however, seven otherworks of mercy called “spiritual,” which pertain to other equally important needs, especially today, because they touch the person’s soul, and often create the greatest suffering (Audience, 12 October 2016).
— A mother once told me that she wanted to teach this to her children and she told them to help and feed those who were hungry. She had three. And one day at lunch—the dad was out working, she was there with her three young children, 7, 5 and 4 years old, more or less—and there came a knock at the door: there was a man who asked for something to eat. And the mama told him: “Wait a moment.” She went back inside and told her children: “There’s a man there asking for something to eat, what can we do?” “Let’s give him something, Mama, let’s give him something!” Each of them had a beefsteak and fried potatoes on their plate. “Very well”—the mother said—“let’s take half from each of you, and we’ll give him half of the beefsteak from each of you.” “Oh, no, Mom, that’s not right!” “That’s how it is, you have to give some of yours.” And this is how this mom taught her children to give food from their own plate. This is a fine example that really helped me. “But I don’t have any leftovers...” “Give some of your own!” This is what Mother Church teaches us (Audience, 10 September 2014).
Quotes from Saint Josemaria to reflect on
— Would you like to know a secret to happiness? Give yourself to others and serve them, without waiting to be thanked (The Forge, no. 368).
— If we were to give in to comfort, it would be like telling Jesus, ‘Look, my time is mine, not yours. I don’t want to tie myself down to looking after your vineyard’ (Friends of God, no. 48).
— Ask our Lord to give us a good heart, capable of having compassion for other people’s pain. Only with such a heart can we realize that the true balm for the suffering and anguish in this world is love, charity (Christ is Passing By, no. 167).