'World Day of the Poor' by Bishop Michael F. Burbidge


Ask anyone what comes to mind when they think of Pope Francis, and most will point to his love for the poor. This concern for the least among us has been one of the hallmarks of his pontificate. It should come as no surprise, then, that he has dedicated Nov. 19, 2017, as the first World Day of the Poor. There are many “world days” on the calendar of the Church, such as the World Day of the Sick, of Vocations, and of Marriage. Pope Francis has chosen to add this one as a permanent extension of the Jubilee of Mercy.


This is not a celebration of poverty in the way that World Youth Day is a celebration of young people. Pope Francis intends for this day to call our attention to the plight of the poor and to the many kinds of poverty that exist in our world. He also wants to “encourage believers to react against a culture of discard and waste, and to embrace the culture of encounter.” Read more of Bishop's column, here.