6.1 Should I give money to a beggar? How can I respect the dignity of the needy? Should I give without questioning? Why does God not act?
Solidarity means sharing the material and spiritual goods of the earth fairly among all people. Giving, sharing with others from what we have is a Christian duty (Mt 5:42; Lk 6:30). It is a response to the commandment to love our neighbour (Mk 13:29-31). Human dignity is a fundamental principle of Christian life. You are not superior because you happen to have something you can give away. In every human interaction, the other deserves your respect and your love.
When you encounter a homeless person, look them in the eye and show that you see them as a human individual. You may wish to respect their will by giving them what they ask. You also have a responsibility not to give something that can be harmful. You will need to discern in conscience how you can best help them. God acts to help the poor through you! If you place your mind, hands, and possessions at his disposal, he can do very much to help people in need around you.
By what is love for the poor inspired?
Love for the poor is inspired by the Gospel of the Beatitudes and by the example of Jesus in his constant concern for the poor. Jesus said, “Whatever you have done to the least of my brethren, you have done to me” (Matthew 25:40). Love for the poor shows itself through the struggle against material poverty and also against the many forms of cultural, moral, and religious poverty. The spiritual and corporal works of mercy and the many charitable institutions formed throughout the centuries are a concrete witness to the preferential love for the poor which characterizes the disciples of Jesus [CCCC 520].
How is human solidarity manifested?
Solidarity, which springs from human and Christian brotherhood, is manifested in the first place by the just distribution of goods, by a fair remuneration for work and by zeal for a more just social order. The virtue of solidarity also practices the sharing of the spiritual goods of faith which is even more important than sharing material goods [CCCC 414].
The needs of the poor must take priority over the desires of the rich; the rights of workers over the maximisation of profits; the preservation of the environment over uncontrolled industrial expansion; production to meet social needs over production for military purposes
[Pope John Paul II, To Christian communities, 14 Sept. 1984, 5].