“Pope Francis has released his message for the annual World Day of the Poor [Sunday 19 November], stressing that a ‘great river of poverty is traversing our cities’, and that every Christian is called to become ’personally involved’ in the struggle against it….
"’We are living in times that are not particularly sensitive to the needs of the poor. The pressure to adopt an affluent lifestyle increases, while the voices of those dwelling in poverty tend to go unheard.’
“In particular, he stresses ‘new forms of poverty’, such as ‘peoples caught up in situations of war’, the ‘inhumane treatment’ of many workers, and ‘speculation in various sectors’, which he said had led to ‘dramatic price increases that further impoverish many families’….’whenever we encounter a poor person, we cannot look away, for that would prevent us from encountering the face of the Lord Jesus.’…”
Independent Catholic News, Source: Vatican News, 13 June 2023. See full article at https://www.indcatholicnews.com/news/47365
“Archbishop William Nolan of Glasgow has called on UK Government to increase benefits in line with inflation. ‘The poor must not be sacrificed in an attempt to shore up the Government's credibility with the markets,’ he said last week. ‘Making the poor poorer is not an act of fiscal prudence, it is an act of injustice.’ He felt it is a ‘fundamental injustice’ that ‘working people aren't getting a living wage,’ and said, ‘we then need to really look at how we reward people in our society.’ He drew attention to the applause for key [workers] during Covid lockdowns, ‘but they need more than a clap, they need decent pay,’ adding that ‘we've got a low-wage economy and people are struggling; poverty won't go away until we pay people a fair wage.’…"
Independent Catholic News, 17 Oct 2022, Ellen Teague, https://www.indcatholicnews.com/news/45712
“Responding to the news that Rishi Sunak has become the next Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Chief Executive of Christian Aid Patrick Watt said: ‘In the face of the worst global cost of living crisis in a generation, the new Prime Minister must re-set the government's approach. We need a commitment that he will not balance the books on the back of the poorest people, either at home or abroad.’
"’With COP27 on the horizon, Rishi Sunak must show leadership on the climate crisis by supporting a swift just transition to net zero while also urgently helping the millions of people on the brink of famine in East Africa by restoring the aid budget.’
"’We would urge the prime minister to protect the diminishing aid budget from any further cuts.’”
Independent Catholic News, 27 Oct 2022, Source: Christian Aid, https://www.indcatholicnews.com/news/45779
“[Salford Bishop John Arnold from the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales said,] ‘This is no longer just a cost-of-living crisis but a threat to the human dignity of millions... as Christians, we cannot ignore the situation’
“As people face an ‘unprecedented crisis’ of sky-high energy bills and an impending recession, Catholic bishops and justice groups are calling on the Government to ‘examine their conscience’ and take urgent action….
“[The Bishop’s Conference and] The Big Issue magazine [have] joined former PM Gordon Brown and his Anti-Poverty Coalition in calling on the Government to take urgent action to prevent a ‘poverty time-bomb’ going off in October.
“Gordon Brown warned in the magazine that millions of people were standing on the edge of a financial precipice.
“Mr Brown said: ‘I estimate that one in every two children will lose out as October fuel and food bills eat up the lion’s share of a family budget. The grim facts right now are that 27.7 million people in 14.5m households are staring at fuel poverty in October. And, if nothing is done before another fuel price rise in January, the fuel poor could rise to 39.4m – 56 per cent of the country, with stark regional variations.’
“The Anti-Poverty Coalition is calling for an emergency budget ‘to plot a path to help the population’
“Bishop of Middlesborough Terry Drainey, chair of Caritas Social Action Network (CSAN)… [said to the Universe] ‘We know that rising prices disproportionately affect low-income families and individuals. It looks likely that many more people will be dragged into poverty this autumn. The cost-of-living crisis is deeply worrying.’…
“Catholic justice group the St Vincent de Paul Society (SVP) says the price increases have led to ‘unprecedented demand’ for its services. ‘The agonising decision to heat or eat is a very real one for many families,’ the SVP told the Universe….
“Bishop Terry Drainey called on lay Catholics to play their part in alleviating the crisis….”
Universe Catholic Weekly, page 1-2, Andy Drozdiak, 12 August 2022
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