Wellington Cardinal John Dew called on the faithful to heed the words of Nano Nagle “who was giving her all to the poor long before Pope Francis began this day to remember the poor”.
Cardinal Dew celebrated an archdiocesan Mass on the occassion of the World Day of the Poor at St Michael’s church in Taita on November 18.
The celebration coincided with the 300th anniversary of the birth of Nano Nagle, founder of
the Presentation Sisters.
“From the time when she was living in Paris and was on her way home from a ball and saw poor people gathering around a church in search of food and shelter, she knew she had to do something to help the poor . . . and she did,” he said.
“She didn’t wait until she had a grand plan and the money to finance it, she made a start by stepping out into the community and doing what she could to help the poor,” he added.
Cardinal Dew said Nano Nagle’s quote “Go out, you may not rest secure for need calls loudly you must seek God there. Loving shall be your flame”, is essential for us today.
He said Pope Francis reminds us that God listens to the cry of the poor.
“[Jesus] wants us to have confidence that we are never alone . . . even in the midst of poverty, struggles, problems and crises,” Cardinal Dew said.
In the light of these promises, he said, “we can be courageous”.
“That is exactly what Nano Nagle did. She didn’t ‘calculate’ what this or that act of love would ‘cost’ her. In faith, she knew that as Jesus has assured us that the secret to happiness is that we will really find ourselves when we lose ourselves in love,” Cardinal Dew stressed.
Wellington archdiocese was one of the 12 dioceses around the world that served as pillars
of the second World Day of the Poor celebrations, led by Catholic charity Fratello.