Aleteia logoAleteia logoAleteia
Thursday 02 February |
The Feast of the Presentation of the Lord
Aleteia logo
Spirituality
separateurCreated with Sketch.

How St. Peter Claver shows us that charity does not require a degree

ŚWIĘTY PIOTR KLAWER

Public Domain

Philip Kosloski - published on 09/09/22

When visiting Colombia in 2017, Pope Francis pointed out how St. Peter Claver's example can inspire us today.

You can get Aleteia inspiration and news in your inbox. Our specially curated newsletter is sent each morning. The best part? It's free.

Sign up here

In 2017, Pope Francis made an apostolic trip to Colombia, and while there, celebrated Mass in the port area of Cartagena. He did so recalling the massive slave trade that had been centered there, looking to St. Peter Claver for inspiration.

In particular, Pope Francis explained in his homily how charity towards another person doesn’t require any “qualification,” but can be practiced by anyone.

Alongside Saint Peter Claver were thousands of Christians, many of them consecrated … but only a handful started a counter-cultural movement of encounter. Saint Peter was able to restore the dignity and hope of hundreds of thousands of black people and slaves arriving in absolutely inhuman conditions, full of dread, with all their hopes lost. He did not have prestigious academic qualifications, and he even said of himself that he was “mediocre” in terms of intelligence, but he had the genius to live the Gospel to the full, to meet those whom others considered merely as waste material.

St. Peter Claver’s example highlights for us that charity towards our neighbor does not need an academic degree or qualification.

Charity simply requires an openness to God’s will and a willingness to imitate Jesus’ love in the Gospel.

St. Peter Claver explained in a letter that the missionaries wanted to treat everyone with dignity and care.

Then we sat, or rather knelt, beside them and bathed their faces and bodies with wine. We made every effort to encourage them with friendly gestures and displayed in their presence the emotions which somehow naturally tend to hearten the sick.

As we strive to live a Gospel-filled life, may we recognize that we don’t need any qualifications to be charitable, but can love our neighbor with the grace of God.

Tags:
Pope FrancisSaints
Support Aleteia!

Enjoying your time on Aleteia?

Articles like these are sponsored free for every Catholic through the support of generous readers just like you.

Thanks to their partnership in our mission, we reach more than 20 million unique users per month!

Help us continue to bring the Gospel to people everywhere through uplifting and transformative Catholic news, stories, spirituality, and more.

Support Aleteia with a gift today!

jour1_V2.gif
Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Entrust your prayer intentions to our network of monasteries


Top 10
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here. It's Free!