200. Since this Exhortation is addressed to members of the Catholic Church, I want to say, with regret, that the worst discrimination which the poor suffer is the lack of spiritual care. The great majority of the poor have a special openness to the faith; they need God and we must not fail to offer them his friendship, his blessing, his word, the celebration of the sacraments and a journey of growth and maturity in the faith. Our preferential option for the poor must mainly translate into a privileged and preferential religious care.
Say what you will about the charitable work being usurped by governments (and I don’t really think there’s much substance to the complaint) but Evangelii Gaudium suggests we miss five major points of openness:
- God’s friendship
- God’s blessing
- God’s Word
- A faith journey
In essence is the journey of conversion to Christ. All elements of the Rite of Christian Initiation. All elements needed for those who were once with the Church but are inactive. All elements each of us believers needs to renew and permit Christ to renew us. Daily.
Do efforts at charity and justice touch on these? If not, why not?