When was the last time you worried about how you were going to get your next meal? I know many of us who have lunch here on a regular basis ask “What are we having for lunch today?” Or, in my family, when we have been on vacation together, as we finish breakfast someone asks, “What are we doing for lunch?” And at lunch, “What are we doing for dinner?”
For most of us, it is a matter of a choice of what we are going to have; the question is not if we are going to have anything to eat. The same thing is true about clothes; it’s not “Do I have a coat to wear?” but “Which coat will I wear?” Most of us are in a position where we don’t need to worry because we have more than we need. But, there are many people around us who do worry about those things. Can we find a better way to distribute food resources around the world?
Hope Dominican Sister Margaret Anderson’s message above urges us to explore hunger and need. The questions she poses in her Lenten reflection lead us to the Beatitudes, and a perspective on worry that, well, can feed the places in our soul that hunger.
You are the salt of the earth. You are the light of the world. ~ Matt. 5:13-14
“When I hear the Beatitudes, I think of them as showing us the attitude we should have toward life and those around us… we are to be salt of the earth and let our light shine to others; we are to fulfill the law and the prophets; we are to forgive. And then we hear that we should not worry,” writes Sr. Margaret.
Sources of worry abound, says Sr. Margaret. “I have a neighbor who lives on disability and often expresses his concern about how he is going to meet his expenses. If you travel on the subway or drive on the city highways, you may have encountered people who don’t have enough to eat and look like they could use a better coat. Maybe we need to worry about them and look for things that can be done so they don’t need to worry.”
Worry, specifically about hunger, was also on the mind of Grand Rapids Dominican Sister Barbara Hansen. “Giving food to the hungry is a corporal work of mercy; this was the seed God planted in my heart this Lenten Season.”
“We are grateful we can join with congregations of Sisters from around the nation in collecting food for people in need. As Catholic Sisters Week (March 8-12) draws near, 22 congregations of Catholic Sisters in the U.S. are focusing attention on hunger and food scarcity,” says Sr. Barbara, a coordinator of the local initiative.
“Hunger is such a reality in our city and among families we know, so surely we would want to help alleviate it. Our collection is for St. Alphonsus Food Pantry and St. Joseph the Worker Church,” says Sr. Barbara. “Both of these parishes are experiencing great need due to COVID precautions, increased unemployment, illness, and resulting hardships for families and community.”
In Grand Rapids at Marywood, the Dominican Sisters and Associates, with Aquinas College, are collecting non-perishable food items or personal care items. A truck will be available for items to be dropped off at the following times and locations:
• March 8 – 11 from 3:00 – 7:00 pm at Aquinata Hall East Parking Lot (off Lakeside Drive)
• March 12 from Noon – 7:00 pm at Aquinas College Sturrus Sports & Fitness Center (off Fulton Street)
Monetary donations, which will be used to purchase items, can be sent to: Dominican Sisters~Grand Rapids, Food Drive, 2025 Fulton East, Grand Rapids, MI 49503-3895. Please mark gift, ‘Food Drive’.
Find more information about needed items at https://www.grdominicans.org/food-pantry-collection-for-st-alphonsus-and-st-joseph-the-worker-march-8-12-2021/
Note: Read Sister Margaret Anderson’s reflection Worrying Can Help, Until it Hurts, Mar 1, 2017 https://ophope.org/spirituality/lenten-reflection-worrying-can-help-until-it-hurts/
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