Brendan’s story provided many challenging moments for those gathered. Among his most challenging points was that all Christians need to be advocates for the poor and downtrodden and to journey with them towards a hope-filled future. By virtue of our faith, we are motivated to action. He also said that as a Catholic agency, Caritas seeks to bring about lasting change and opportunity − justice − as well as meeting the immediate needs of the poor − charity. One cannot be without the other.
Advocacy is an important role within Social Justice agencies in terms of issues such as climate change, asylum seekers and refugees, food security, reconciliation with our indigenous peoples and poverty as they are competing for our politicians’ time and increasingly limited aid funding. Brendan outlined some of the creative methods used to advocate for the poor.
Brendan expressed appreciation for the generosity towards Project Compassion during Lent over the last 50 years. He mentioned that the small change given in school, home and parish Project Compassion boxes and fund raising events has made such a difference to the people assisted by the projects conducted by Caritas in communities around the world.
Pints with a Purpose is a monthly event facilitated by the Diocesan Council for Ministry with Young People on the first Monday of each month at the Northern Star Hotel, Beaumont St Hamilton.
Please check the DCMYP Facebook page for the next Pints with a Purpose on Monday, 4 April.