Bishop Llanos becomes fourth bishop of St John’s-Basseterre*
February 6, 2019
Changing our narrative
February 8, 2019

As Venezuela faces humanitarian crisis: “Respond as Christ would”

As the mountains surround Jerusalem, So the LORD surrounds His people from this time forth and forever.’ (Psalm 125:2)

We are experiencing a time as never before in our region with the humanitarian crisis in our neighbouring Venezuela and the implications of this situation for us as a nation…we are also experiencing in our own country, violence, crime, corruption and poverty, also probably as never before. How do we as Christians respond to this?

I often quote the Vatican Document, ‘Church in the Modern World’. It reads: “The joys and the hopes, the griefs and the anxieties of the men of this age, especially those who are poor or in any way afflicted, these are the joys and hopes, the griefs and anxieties of the followers of Christ.”

It is quite clear that as Christians we have to respond as Christ would in these situations, with mercy, understanding, love and all the attributes of Jesus himself. Of course, this may be a challenge for all of us, but it doesn’t take away the responsibility of a baptized Christian, to be an instrument of giving life to all in need.

Pope Francis recently wrote in his letter; ‘The Human Community’ that The human community is God’s dream even from before the creation of the world (cf. Eph 1:3-14). In it, the eternal Son begotten of God the Father has taken flesh and blood, heart and emotions. Through the mystery of giving life, the great family of humanity is enabled to discover its true meaning.

Yes, we will only discover the true meaning of being a part of the human family in these challenging situations that are before us when we choose to give life, to be that presence of love and mercy to those in need.

For this, dear sisters and brothers, we need to be people of the sacraments and prayer. To awake in the morning and to know that we have prayer as part of our day. Whether early as we awake or another time more suitable. To make that journey of Faith with the Lord day by day, week by week, month by month. To know that God’s Spirit will guide us and give us what we need to be his disciples and live out the gift of our baptism.

These challenging days demand from us a commitment like never before to be Christ’s presence in the world so that the light of Christ that we bear could push back the darkness around us. Are we willing to respond to God’s call is the question that each one of us must answer.

Pope Francis, also says in ‘The Human Community’ that “Christians, hearing the cry of suffering peoples, need to react against the negativity that foments division, indifference and hostility. They must do so not simply for their own sake, but for that of everyone. And they need to do so now, before it is too late”.

Thanks be to God that as mountains surround Jerusalem, The Lord surrounds his people …both now and forevermore. Let’s live in the joy and knowledge of this.

Rhonda Maingot, Living Water Community Director