October 27, 2006

Matthew 25:31-46

Recently, I have noticed an increase in the numbers of people standing at off-ramps near local freeways with crude cardboard signs saying: "Homeless, need money" "Homeless, will work for food" "Just lost job, need money".

Years ago, I turned my back on giving these people money because I once observed an individual near the Broadway Avenue freeway exit leave his "station" and get into a nice looking van. "Ah-ha, this proves that these people are all scammers! Never again, will I give any of them money. No matter how pathetic they look."

It bothers me to see them. But I have remained firm in my judgement and I have kept my money.

Yesterday, I blogged about my own distressing financial situation. How much seperates me from having to stand on an off-ramp asking for money or food? One major disaster and that could be me out there.

I'm fasting today. I just had my midday snack and I pulled out my October 26th issue of the Catholic Spirit (the Archdiocesan newspaper). Archbishop Flynn's column is a reprint from last year. I must have had a hard heart last year because I don't remember the column.

The Archbishop writes about the people on the street corners and the doubts we have if they are "legit" or not. The Archbishop says:

"I decided that if I died that night and met Jesus Christ, I would rather have Jesus Christ say to me: "You were a victim of a scam," rather than, "You passed someone by who was really hungry and needed your help."

I'm ashamed. I'm so ashamed. Please forgive me.

3 Comments:

Blogger Angela Messenger said...

I would rather give them something to eat or whatever they needed rather than money. In my neighbourhood you can bet if you gave someone cash they would spend it on drugs. It's such a hard call to make though, isn't it.

October 27, 2006 3:46 PM  
Blogger :o) said...

Don't be ashamed. Be happy your heart is tender to be touched by what Flynn wrote.

October 27, 2006 5:23 PM  
Blogger Terry Nelson said...

I like this post so much. I like the Archbishop's charity.

I'm so much thinking on how good it is to lose, to be taken advantage of. Giving one's coat when asked for one's shirt...

I've been chided for giving to people who may use the money for alcohol or drugs - I'm with the Archbishop.

I always think the kindness shown the stranger will remin in his heart, and after the brief joy of whatever the money is spent on, he may remember that.

I love the foolishness of God.

October 30, 2006 3:17 PM  

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