Day 238 – Mrs. Flusche’s Super Basic Primer on the Seven Corporal Works of Mercy (Part II)

Monday, November 9, 2020 –

Today we will be diving into our first of the seven Corporal Works of Mercy: to feed the hungry.

Again, these seem super easy and straightforward, but given our current state of the Union, it would do us some good to see what Bishop Morrow has to say in My Catholic Faith: a Catechism in Pictures. You remember Bishop Morrow, right? Good guy from the 50s who made an awesome book that we routinely pull from for this blog. Yeah, THAT guy!

Anyhoo, let’s crack open our copy of My Catholic Faith:

Which are the chief corporal works of mercy? – The chief corporal works of mercy are seven:
1. To feed the hungry.–We must never turn away anyone who is hungry. Those in authority should prevent unemployment. Giving work is the best means for removing the necessity of feeding the unemployed.
St. Louis of France provided daily food to the poor, and often served them himself. Many charitable people today, especially the religious institutions, feed the hungry. Lay people can help out best by giving work to all they can afford to hep; work is better for the able-bodied than direct alms-giving. (Bishop Morrow, My Catholic Faith, p. 180)

To be clear, Bishop Morrow is saying that we ALL—even the King of France—have an obligation to feed the hungry! AND, those who happen to be in positions of authority (ahem, like the King of France) have an additional obligation to remove or prevent the barriers that lead to hunger, like unemployment.

NO, Bishop Morrow is NOT advocating for communism or socialism. Rather, he is advocating for the government to get out of the way so those who need work can work and those who can hire do hire. Look, we could take a sharp turn down a dark political alley, but I’d rather not given the current state of affairs. I’m just all politicaled out at the moment.

Just know that it is far better to abate long-term hunger by helping someone work rather than simply handing out government “bennies.” However, there are indeed those times where you simply need to hand over the granola bar and abate someone’s immediate hunger vs. getting into a polemics about who has what job or the cost of living or the minimum wage.

Got it? GOOD!

Now, on to our example…

Let’s say you are living in a world that has lost its fuzzin mind and elected someone who brings about the fall of western civilization. Thankfully, you had time to adequately prepare your home and hearth with a lovely supply of bacon and coffee…and other things like a garden and a horde of chickens, of course. Unfortunately, your neighbor was too busy drinking champagne in the street celebrating the demise of society to realize they also needed to go to the store.

A couple of days goes by and said neighbor is at your door, hungry. You should absolutely help them! You have two options: 1) hand over your supplies; or 2) teach them to garden and hunt.

Both, in fact, are correct and viable options. With #1 you do run the risk of running out of your own food, but assuming you can ration yourself, then you can and should abate the immediate hunger. The second option gives them not just “stuff” but teaches them how to help themselves in the long run.

P.S. The story, all names, characters, and incidents portrayed in this blog post are fictitious. No identification with actual prepper hordes, persons (living or soon to be deceased), places, buildings, and products is intended or should be inferred.

Sancte Raphael, ora pro nobis!

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