Pope Asks Church To Care For The Poor Top story

2012 Views Kampala, Uganda

In short
Pope Francis tells the church they cannot stand by and close their ears to the needs of the poor.

Pope Francis has urged Catholic parishes and Christians, to take care of the poor and elderly.

Speaking at the Bakateyamba House of Charity in Nalukolongo, Francis appeals to all parishes and Ugandans not to forget the poor.

"As Christians, we cannot afford to stand by, our parishes cannot close their ears to the cry of the poor," says Pope Francis.

The Bakateyamba House of Charity, a home for the elderly and sick, currently has 102 inhabitants. 64 of them are Catholics, 35 Anglicans and 3 Muslims.

The Pope praised the sisters running the house for their "immense efforts to serve those who suffer AIDS."

He says as Christians, "we cannot simply stand by. Something must change; our families must remain a living symbol of love and hope."

Pope Francis challenged all saying the service to the poor is a role of Christian discipleship. He decried the growing disregard for the elderly and needy.

Among the practices castigated by the Pope is a throw-away culture, which breeds contempt towards the unborn, the young and the elderly.

The Pope also spoke against exploitation of children, terming it "modern day slavery by way of child trafficking."

Pope Francis then left for Rubaga Cathedral, where he will meet Ugandan bishops before speaking to priests and seminaries.