Giving to the needy is not just an act of generosity, it is a tangible sign that the thoughts and feelings of Christ have entered the heart of the giver, it is a proof of true faith, it is a manifestation of gratuitous love, it is a proof of faith lived.

From the 2. letter of S. Paul to the Corinthians (2Cor 8,7.9.13-15)

Now as you excel in every respect, in faith, discourse, knowledge, all earnestness, and in the love we have for you, may you excel in this gracious act also. For you know the gracious act of our Lord Jesus Christ, that for your sake he became poor although he was rich, so that by his poverty you might become rich. And I am giving counsel in this matter, for it is appropriate for you who began not only to act but to act willingly last year: complete it now, so that your eager willingness may be matched by your completion of it out of what you have. For if the eagerness is there, it is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have; not that others should have relief while you are burdened, but that as a matter of equality your surplus at the present time should supply their needs, so that their surplus may also supply your needs, that there may be equality. As it is written: “Whoever had much did not have more, and whoever had little did not have less.”

The purpose of this chapter is to encourage us to live our lives for the glory of God and not for the glory of ourselves.

God is our providence, often giving us more than we need so that we can use what we have for the poor and destitute. This brings glory to God.

The community of believers was of one heart and mind, and no one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they had everything in common.

In the years 41-54 AD, various famines occurred in several provinces of the Roman Empire, so Palestine was not spared either. Paul pledged to help and also called on Christian communities to take up collections to help the destitute, including the communities he had founded.

Paul needs to justify the meaning of his request – so demanding – when it comes to money and material goods, then as now, one is always tempted not to see and not to feel the needs of others… and for a more or less valid reason one is always tempted to closure.

Offering for those in need is not simply an act of generosity, it is a tangible sign that the thoughts and feelings of Christ have entered into the heart of the giver, it is proof of genuine faith, it is the manifestation of gratuitous love, it is proof of lived faith. Paul wants to stimulate the Corinthians to want to give. What we do for the Lord we must season with a greater love, that is, do it from the heart.

God looks into the heart, where no one can see, only he scrutinises and knows our heart!

The sharing of goods is an evangelical value, it becomes a requirement for those who live by faith.

Only through that poverty that chose the son, in the flesh of Jesus, is it possible for all of us to enjoy the greatest wealth: that of being ‘heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ’, that is, truly, without doubt, his children!

Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord. Therefore, I myself, with my mind, serve the law of God but, with my flesh, the law of sin! (Rm 7,25)