Poverty is happening all around the world. Many Christians feel that this is unfair and it is their duty to help. Some give money to charities, others go and help build facilities in poor areas, I will now explore more into why a Christian may support those who are poor around the world. Poverty is a vicious circle, when you get caught in it is hard to get out. Charities such as Christian Aid try and help these vulnerable people, by raising money in the UK which is given by people who wish to help. Christians have many opportunities to support global poverty.
Pope John Paul Second said in his world day of peace message 2001, It is not just a question of giving what we have left over to those in need, but of “helping entire countries who are excluded to have a chance of economic and human development. For this to happen, we need a change of lifestyles, of models and of the established structures of power which today govern societies”. This illustrates to Christians that they have a duty to help the less fortunate, and not necessarily by charity, and that Christians need to change to help others.
One current project which is being run by Christian Aid, a Christian founded and based charity’ is raising money to supply goats to a destitute area in Mozambique. This means enables the local people to earn and live off their own work rather than depending on charities. The Christians who give the money give it freely and are endorsing what Pope John Paul Second had preached. Make Poverty History was a year long campaign in 2005, the year in which the G8 summit took place in Edinburgh.
It aimed to highlight the plight of 3rd world poverty by peaceful demonstrations, including marches I went on in London and in Edinburgh. Instead of asking for charity, the campaign called for justice: for the governments of the richest countries to make the political decisions that deliver justice for the world’s poorest people. Through the G8 and the EU, the UK government was challenged to make radical changes to its own economic policies and push for long-term changes; they wanted to solve injustice in global trade, the huge burden of unpayable and unjust debt and insufficient and ineffective aid.
The campaign wasn’t a charity but a global organisation which aimed to inform the world about the poverty situation and how we as society could help; it also was not a Christian organisation but was backed by many Christian charities such as Christian, UNICEF and many Christian people. Seeing images of mass death and poverty would challenge a Christian and their responsibilities for Gods world. This relates the Psalm 41 “Happy the man who cares for the weak”, which shows us that a Christian should want to take responsibility for those less fortunate than themselves.