Has the Christian church failed the poor?

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by Gina B, Jan 7, 2003.

  1. Gina B

    Gina B
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    As Christians, why does it seems that groups we generally view as not part of the church seem to have much better organized efforts in caring for the poor or widowed?
    The Catholic Charities
    The LDS church has it's own system (an amazing one IMO in comparison to the rest, and the most biblical one I've seen in action)
    The Masons if represented accurately on the thread
    and many others.

    Why does it seem that the best a true Christian church in most instances can do is have a food parlor stuffed with outdated cereal and canned cranberry sauce, while the rest have whole systems set up to help each other out? :confused:
    Gina
     
  2. Johnv

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    Also the Elks, Moose, and like organizations have significant outreaches to the poor.

    But the most notable the most notable charitable organizations that reach out to the poor are Christian organizations: Habitat for Humanity and the Salvation Army.
     
  3. Kiffin

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    Good question. The Churches I have been part of have helped people pay their utily bills, rent and at my last church we fed a low rent federal housing apartment complex once a month.

    Part of the problem is Money. Churches can only do so much. This requires a commitment of the membership to financial support the Church. The first priority of a Church is using money for Missions and Evangelism and everything else follows Caution must be used however in helping people. Many poor people are poor because they choose to be that way and seek to mooch off of Churches, Federal government and charities and other poor people are poor because of bad financial descions or being layed off work and really need the help. A social worker told me how that in one Catholic Diocese, the funds were exhausted by many who take advantage of good will. In order for Christian Churches to help the poor, we must have members who financialy support the Church and the Church needs a heart for the downtrodden (But beware of moochers who misuse charity!)

    Voice of the Martyrs has a Blankets for Sudan ministry that is easy for a Church to simply give blankets to the downtrodden Christians there with very little financial burden.

    [ January 07, 2003, 03:14 PM: Message edited by: Kiffin ]
     
  4. donnA

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    For one thing the type of system you are talking about is much more costly then the average church can afford. We looked at a program and it was more then we had available, and took a lot of physical work, during hours most men are already at work. We haven't totally said no to the idea, but want to know more about what we are getting into, and for God's leardeship, we aren't even sure He is leading our particular church to this type of ministry.
     
  5. donnA

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    Oh yah, we do do omething. We do help pay bills,a nd buy food, and since we are right on the interstate, we help provide for people coming of the interstate who have no money, and need shelter or food, diapers maybe whatever.
     
  6. stubbornkelly

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    It also seems that most of the things you mentioned, Gina, are highly organized, and have a central leadership that the Christian "church" does not. We are so factionalized. I mean, how often do you really hear the phrase "the Christian church" anyway? I hear "the SBC" or "the Methodists" or "PCUSA," but never "the Christian church." So, it's not surprising that you can't find good numbers like you can for the Catholic charities and LDS and the like. It seems more likely that, particularly among Baptists, charity is going to come from a specific local congregation, rather than a larger organized foundation.

    [ January 07, 2003, 07:40 PM: Message edited by: stubbornkelly ]
     
  7. massdak

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    i believe the main stay of the new testament church is to teach disciples for spreading the gospel mainly outside of the church, if churches make their main for social benefit then you will have nothing but liberal religionist that care little about the gospel.
    churches that dwell on the needy for social needs tend to start all sorts of deviant things such as methodist and they promote laws that are not favorable to Christians
     
  8. stubbornkelly

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    And then there's that. [​IMG]

    We create requirements for our help. Help given with strings attached is no help at all.

    My home church liked to focus on the idea that with Christ, the people that needed help would be able to help themselves. Which may be true, but it doesn't solve the immediate need many of our local neighbors had. Thankfully, they had the Catholic churches to help out.
     
  9. Gina B

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    Kelly, one of the things the LDS church does is have members with a two year stock of necessities, so that 1. a member isn't in need and 2. if someone is in need it's there.
    Also, they maintain their own orchards and such, and those that receive help are asked to work in them.
    Next, I suppose the first question begs the reverse question.
    Have the Christians failed the church? Eek!
    Gina
     
  10. Jim1999

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    As a minister with a few years of experience, I always carried some cash to assist people where I thought there was a need.....without any questions asked.

    I taught, in each church, that it was our collective responsibility to care for all in OUR congregation, members and regular adherents. This was our ministry. I never had an argument from any of the churches on this point.

    As far as outreach is concerned, there are plenty of Christian organizations set up for the very purpose of dealing with the poor and needy folks. Perhaps, as a local church, we ought to consider these a mission and provide some funds in that direction.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  11. Tentmaker

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    I have always believed this is a tremendous area the church has missed out on. What a great witness and opportunity to win souls: through orphanges,hospitals, etc. Yes, I know Jesus' Great Commission, but what we view today as "social work", is what I believe Jesus taught us to do by His many examples. Also 1 Corinthians 13 the great charity (which is simply love in action) chapter. James 1:27 teaches this also. In Isaiah 58 the Jews are rebuked for their lack of love and consideration for their fellows. We missed the boat. And unfortunately to get back on takes considerable expense. In the meantime let us not forget the orphaned, the widowed, the homeless, and infirm. Just because their pockets are not so deep, their souls are just as lost.
     
  12. donnA

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    Are you talking about food banks/ food pantries?
    I don't see anything worng with them. People can go there and get items they could never afford otherwise, like cereal, fruit and cereal bars, poptarts, name brand caned goods. These are mainly items given by companies for distribution to the poor through feeding programs. I once had to regularly visit these places,and I was very thanksful they exsisted. And I got more then out dated cereal and cranberry sauce.
     
  13. Aaron

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    If a rich man can hardly enter the Kingdom of Heaven, how can the true church have failed the poor?
     
  14. mark

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    For one thing the type of system you are talking about is much more costly then the average church can afford. We looked at a program and it was more then we had available, and took a lot of physical work, during hours most men are already at work. We haven't totally said no to the idea, but want to know more about what we are getting into, and for God's leardeship, we aren't even sure He is leading our particular church to this type of ministry.

    I think if Christians tithed across the board, there would be plenty of money to help the poor.
     
  15. Rick Sr.

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    If our churches can't take care of the poor, what is the faith-based idea on social security supposed to accomplish? Or has the present government give up on this? I apologize for "chasing rabbits". Rick Sr. :confused:
     
  16. Dr. Bob

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    What greater way to "take care of the poor" than to share the Gospel with them?
    We HAVE an obligation to minister to people's physical needs as well as their spiritual paucity. I think every church in our town has food pantries, funds for emergencies, clothing etc.

    We do it and meet needs regularly. And we have the car-care clinic where 100+ cars are worked on by our men to "winterize" them for single moms.
     

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