Basil Caeserea: Hoard Money for Poor

Posted by admin on Thursday, April 6, 2017

Basil the Great Money Quote saying the obvious about distribution of wealth – that is, no one who is poor should go without needs being met. Basil Caeserea said:
 
The bread in your cupboard belongs to the hungry; the coat unused in your closet belongs to the one who needs it; the shoes rotting in your closet belong to the one who has no shoes; the money which you hoard up belongs to the poor Quote
 

“The bread in your cupboard belongs to the hungry; the coat unused in your closet belongs to the one who needs it; the shoes rotting in your closet belong to the one who has no shoes; the money which you hoard up belongs to the poor” — Basil of Caeserea

 

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In this quote, St. Basil of Caesarea is emphasizing that those who have excess wealth and possessions have a moral duty to help those who lack life’s basic necessities. The best interpretation is:

  • St. Basil viewed food, clothing and other resources that go to waste or go unused by the wealthy as rightfully belonging to the hungry, naked and poor instead.
  • He believed anything beyond what was strictly needed by the rich to live comfortably should be redistributed to meet the essential needs of the disadvantaged.
  • St. Basil also saw hoarded money that just sits idle as effectively belonging to the poor who could put it to use ensuring their survival and well-being.
  • The overall message is one of economic justice – that in St. Basil’s thinking, the privileged have a moral obligation to share unneeded wealth and goods with the less fortunate, who have a greater claim to such resources in times of scarcity and suffering.

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