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Papa Francis The First | His Holiness Papa Francisco

Feeding the Hungry...

Today’s guest blogger is Nick Luken, a second-year student at The Ohio State University, majoring in English and minoring in professional writing. Nick graduated from Roger Bacon, a Franciscan high school in Cincinnati, in 2012.

When I talk about how college is different from home, I usually only talk about three things: the college party culture, the independence I have living on my own, and the responsibility I have to take care of myself.  I guess this makes sense, because these three things represent the biggest changes I’ve gone through since I went away to college.

But I tend to overlook one big change–that for the first time in my life I’m living in an urban area.  I grew up in the suburbs of Cincinnati, so living within walking distance of downtown Columbus is a completely new experience for me. One of the more striking things about living near the city is the high number of extremely poor people I see every day.

Just about every time that I leave my dorm to walk to class, I see at least one person dressed in dirty clothes standing by a street corner, asking for spare change.  At least once a week, I see a man sifting through the dumpster in our parking lot, looking for pop cans to turn in for cash.  Not a day goes by that I’m not somehow reminded that right next to the eight million dollar Evans Scholars House where I live, there are people who are just barely getting by.

The hardest part about it is interacting with these poor people.  When I see someone begging for change, I usually want to help, but I can’t always give them anything. But even when I can’t give, I try to give them what I think they need even more than money: love.  If I can’t give them anything, I tell them sympathetically, “I’m sorry, I don’t think I can give you anything,” instead of just passing by and pretending not to notice them.  Sometimes I’ll stop to have a nice conversation with one of them.  They seem to appreciate that even more than spare change.

As Christians, we are called to love our neighbor as ourselves, so even when I can’t give money to these people, I do my best to give them the eternally more valuable peace and love of Christ.

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Featured Photo: Freedigitalphotos.net

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"And now let us begin this journey, the Bishop and people, this journey of the Church of Rome, which presides in charity over all the Churches, a journey of brotherhood in love, of mutual trust. Let us always pray for one another. Let us pray for the whole world that there might be a great sense of brotherhood.

I will now give my blessing to you and to the whole world, to all men and women of good will."

-Papa Francis quote

He does not know you, yet he prays for you.
He will most likely never meet you, yet he loves you.

This is your chance to show your love, for as the Bible teaches, "Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven."