6/7/17

Greed, Avarice, Lust, and Gluttony

From Fr. Richard this morning:

Voluntary Poverty


"... [Francis] own father was one of the first generation of propertied businessmen in the new trading class of Europe. One biographer found city records of twelfth century Assisi showing that Pietro De Bernadone, Francis’ father, was indeed buying up the lands of the poor. Francis recognized that his father’s obsession with money had in many ways destroyed his father’s soul. And so, in some ways overreacting to his father, Francis set out on a radically different path.

Francis concluded that the only way out of such a world was to live a life of voluntary poverty, or what he called a life of “non-appropriation,” and to simply not be a part of the moneyed class. Franciscans wear a rope around their waist as a sign that they carry no money, since the leather belt in Francis’ time also served as a wallet. Francis knew that once you felt you owned anything, then you would have to protect it and increase it. That is the inherent nature of greed—there is never enough. For some reason this is no longer considered a capital sin in our capitalist society. In fact, I have never heard anyone confess an offense against the tenth commandment. “Coveting our neighbor’s goods” is the very nature of our society.

Today the need for simplifying goes beyond an avoidance of violence. Our planet is in grave peril largely due to greed, overconsumption, and reckless exploitation. While most of us are not like Francis, willing to dive into a life of voluntary poverty, we must all make choices and decisions to do our part to follow these wise words of an unknown speaker: “live simply so that others may simply live.”


That isn't going to happen so long as we have the very personification of greed, lust, and avarice - and a bit of gluttony - sitting there in the Oval Office. He represents Greed; he revels in Greed; he thrives on Greed.

No wonder those prosperity preachers love him like a Savior.

But it doesn't say much for the 'Christian' state of the evangelicals who put him in office, does it.

An immoral man cannot provide moral leadership. A 'moral' majority that embraces such a man is hardly 'moral,' other than in a self-righteous, self-defeating, self-serving Pharisaic way.