"Shaking someone's hand, looking into their eyes, offering a friendly presence, saving a person from loneliness--these should be the concern of Caritas," said Cardinal Pietro Parolin during a homily at a Mass for Caritas clergy and staff.
Cardinal Turkson spoke about some of the most far-reaching changes facing the world today, looking at trends in climate change and its huge effect on human development, especially the poor who suffer the most from the consequences of climate change.
“We must keep the poor at the centre of our work as Caritas,” said outgoing Caritas president Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez Maradiaga at a press conference in Rome that opened the Catholic humanitarian network’s 20th General Assembly.
In 2015, Caritas welcomes South Sudan as its newest member. The small African country gained independence in 2011, and its people are experiencing the joys and struggles that come with creating a nation.
The Caritas Internationalis General Assembly (12-17 May) is on the theme of ‘One Human Family, Caring for Creation’. Over 300 delegates will set plans for the next 4 years aimed at improving the lives of those living in poverty and misery.
Caritas thinks ahead, helping local communities alongside displaced ones to prevent conflict beginning between the two. Caritas provides skills training, education and housing – helping people get back home together, back to working and learning.