A citation from Pope John Paul II on “the imagination of charity” blends with a call for the parish church to be on the watch for every possible opportunity to present itself and its members as agents for Christ in a world that too often rejoices in the suffering of the majority of human beings.
176. The Eucharist, sign of unity with all, which extends and makes present the mystery of the Son of God made man (cf. Phil 2:6-8), poses for us the need for comprehensive evangelization. The vast majority of the Catholics of our continent live under the scourge of poverty. It has different expressions: economic, physical, spiritual, moral, and so forth. If Jesus came so that we might have life in fullness, the parish has the wonderful opportunity of responding to the great needs of our peoples. To do so it must follow the path of Jesus and become good Samaritan like Him. Each parish must come to embody in specific signs of solidarity its social commitment in the various settings in which it moves, with all “the imagination of charity.”(Novo Millennio Ineunte 50) It cannot stand apart from the great suffering endured by most of our people often in the form of hidden poverties. Any authentic mission combines concern for the transcendent dimension of human beings and for all their concrete needs, so that all may reach the fullness offered by Jesus Christ.
For a deeper look, remember to check the English translation of the 2007 document from the Aparecida Conference.