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Rome Reports

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Pope Francis presents new and improved World Day of the Poor

The Vatican has presented the second annual World Day of the Poor, scheduled to take place this year on Sunday, November 18. 

The slogan for this edition is a Psalm verse: “This poor man called out, and the Lord heard him.” Pope Francis is urging all Christians to combat indifference to the suffering and marginalization of the most needy. 

President, Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelization
“It's a cultural aspect in which we view ourselves narcissistically, that affects us and doesn't lead to an existence of joy, participation or responsibility.”

There are a few changes this year. First, in the week leading up to the celebration, the poor will once again be offered free medical assistance in St. Peter's Square. However, in an effort to reach more people, the tent hospital will remain open later into the evening. 

President, Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelization
“Many poor people live at night, they're the people of the night. Thus, we have to reflect this in our tent hospital to provide them with a unique experience of participation and attention.”

In addition, following a Mass with the poor in St. Peter's Basilica, Pope Francis will have lunch with some of them in the Paul VI Audience Hall. This year, the Holy Father has doubled the number of invitees, as 3,000 needy are being welcomed to share a meal with him. 

The World Day of the Poor was instituted by Pope Francis in 2017 to provide aid for the disadvantaged in the Eternal City and spread awareness worldwide.