CCC 517 Christ’s whole life is a mystery of redemption. Redemption comes to us above all through the blood of his cross,1 but this mystery is at work throughout Christ’s entire life:
– already in his Incarnation through which by becoming poor he enriches us with his poverty;2
– in his hidden life which by his submission atones for our disobedience;3
– in his word which purifies its hearers;4
– in his healings and exorcisms by which “he took our infirmities and bore our diseases”;5
– and in his Resurrection by which he justifies us.6
CCC 1083 The dual dimension of the Christian liturgy as a response of faith and love to the spiritual blessings the Father bestows on us is thus evident. On the one hand, the Church, united with her Lord and “in the Holy Spirit,”7 blesses the Father “for his inexpressible gift”8 in her adoration, praise, and thanksgiving. On the other hand, until the consummation of God’s plan, the Church never ceases to present to the Father the offering of his own gifts and to beg him to send the Holy Spirit upon that offering, upon herself, upon the faithful, and upon the whole world, so that through communion in the death and resurrection of Christ the Priest, and by the power of the Spirit, these divine blessings will bring forth the fruits of life “to the praise of his glorious grace.”9
CCC 1351 From the very beginning Christians have brought, along with the bread and wine for the Eucharist, gifts to share with those in need. This custom of the collection, ever appropriate, is inspired by the example of Christ who became poor to make us rich:10
Those who are well off, and who are also willing, give as each chooses. What is gathered is given to him who presides to assist orphans and widows, those whom illness or any other cause has deprived of resources, prisoners, immigrants and, in a word, all who are in need.11
CCC 2122 “The minister should ask nothing for the administration of the sacraments beyond the offerings defined by the competent authority, always being careful that the needy are not deprived of the help of the sacraments because of their poverty.”12 The competent authority determines these “offerings” in accordance with the principle that the Christian people ought to contribute to the support of the Church’s ministers. “The laborer deserves his food.”13
CCC 2407 In economic matters, respect for human dignity requires the practice of the virtue of temperance, so as to moderate attachment to this world’s goods; the practice of the virtue of justice, to preserve our neighbor’s rights and render him what is his due; and the practice of solidarity, in accordance with the golden rule and in keeping with the generosity of the Lord, who “though he was rich, yet for your sake. .. became poor so that by his poverty, you might become rich.”14
CCC 2546 “Blessed are the poor in spirit.”15 The Beatitudes reveal an order of happiness and grace, of beauty and peace. Jesus celebrates the joy of the poor, to whom the Kingdom already belongs:16
The Word speaks of voluntary humility as “poverty in spirit”; the Apostle gives an example of God’s poverty when he says: “For your sakes he became poor.”17
CCC 2636 The first Christian communities lived this form of fellowship intensely.18 Thus the Apostle Paul gives them a share in his ministry of preaching the Gospel19 but also intercedes for them.20 The intercession of Christians recognizes no boundaries: “for all men, for kings and all who are in high positions,” for persecutors, for the salvation of those who reject the Gospel.21
CCC 2833 “Our” bread is the “one” loaf for the “many.” In the Beatitudes “poverty” is the virtue of sharing: it calls us to communicate and share both material and spiritual goods, not by coercion but out of love, so that the abundance of some may remedy the needs of others.22
1 Cf. Eph 1:7; Col 1:13-14; 1 Pt 1:18-19.
2 Cf. 2 Cor 8:9.
3 Cf. Lk 2:51.
4 Cf. Jn 15:3.
5 Mt 8:17; cf. Is 53:4.
6 Cf. Rom 4:25.
7 Lk 10:21.
8 2 Cor 9:15.
9 Eph 1:6.
11 St. Justin, Apol. 1, 67: PG 6, 429.
12 CIC, can. 848.
13 Mt 10:10; cf. Lk 10:7; 2 Cor 9:5-18; 1 Tim 5:17-18.
14 2 Cor 8:9.
15 Mt 5:3.
16 Cf. Lk 6:20.
17 St. Gregory of Nyssa, De beatitudinibus 1: PG 44, 1200D; cf. 2 Cor 8:9.
18 Cf. Acts 12:5; 20:36; 21:5; 2 Cor 9:14.
19 Cf. Eph 6:18-20; Col 4:3-4; 1 Thess 5:25.
20 Cf. 2 Thess 1:11; Col 1:3; Phil 1:3-4.
21 2 Tim 2:1; cf. Rom 12:14; 10:1.
22 Cf. 2 Cor 8:1-15.