“No justification whatsoever for lack of housing”— Pope Francis
Symbolism is such a powerful force in education and in life. Now Imagine the spiritual discipline, fortitude, and the foresight to teach a powerful lesson to the “powerful”. A rejection and an acceptance, to be able to reject lunch with the legislative captains of an ineffective and inept government; and instead share a meal with the homeless; the victims of that same ineffective and inept government. Why celebrate with these politicians who make so much noise, and produce so little positive results on behalf of those who are the most in need in our nation. Not daring to “speak” for the Pope; but my imagination and interpretation of his decision is this:
Why should I celebrate and eat with you folks, when in the very capital, of the richest and most powerful nation on earth, and in the shadow of the capital, in the very center of your collective and individual powers; why on earth are people homeless, and why are they eating in a non-governmental St. Maria’s Meals program sponsored by catholic charities, instead of eating in their homes?
And my final take-away-lesson is this: I am sure that the feelings of the congressional legislative leaders were “hurt”; but as witnessed by Dr. King in his letter from his Birmingham jail cell; if in an unjust society you are not making the powerful leaders uncomfortable, and even causing them to perhaps have hurt feelings, then you are in solidarity and agreement with them, and against truth and justice. It is not enough to only “speak truth to power”; we must also act in truth on behalf of those who are the victims of unprincipled power.