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454 • Part III. Christian Morality: The Faith Lived

what it is to struggle against selfishness and greed, and we real-

ize that it is harder for many today to accept the challenge of

being a Christian steward.

It is essential, therefore, that we make a special effort to

understand the true meaning of stewardship and live accordingly.

A Steward’s Way

The life of a Christian steward models the life of Jesus. It is

challenging and even difficult in many respects, yet intense joy

comes to those who take the risk to live as Christian stewards.

Women and men who seek to live as stewards learn that “all

things work for good for those who love God” (Rom 8:28).

After Jesus, we look to Mary as the ideal steward. As the

Mother of Christ, she lived her ministry in a spirit of fidelity and

service; she responded generously to the call.

We must ask ourselves, do we wish to be disciples of Jesus

Christ and Christian stewards of our world and our Church?

Central to our human and Christian vocations, as well as

to the unique vocation each one of us receives from God, is

that we be good stewards of the gifts we possess. God gives us

this divine-human workshop, this world and Church of ours.

The Spirit shows us the way. Stewardship is part of that jour-

ney. (USCCB, “To Be a Christian Steward,” in

Stewardship: A

Disciple’s Response

[Washington, DC: USCCB, 2002], 45ff.)


Some say that helping the poor involves only making sure that all their

physical or material needs are addressed. But is this enough? Should we

not also focus on helping people to develop to their utmost potential?

The first step in helping the disadvantaged is to acknowledge the

sacred dignity and image of God found in each person. What is also

required is a conscience formation from which flow the beliefs, attitudes,

and actions that will help the poor. Having more is never enough. Being

more is paramount.

Christian discipleship means, among other things, working to ensure

that all people have access to what makes them fully human and fosters

their human dignity: faith, education, health care, housing, employment,