Among the poor

Henri Perrin, who died on October 25, 1954, was one of the worker priests, an experiment of priests who lived and worked with the poor working class in Europe. They lived in working class districts and had jobs among workers, especially in factories.

The movement was subsequently suppressed by the hierarchy who was afraid and scandalized that the priests were involved in unions and some were even asked to be part of the leadership. The problem for the Vatican was that some unions were allied with Marxists and Communists.

Yet the movement opened up the masses to the church, for a while.

Henri Perrin expressed the charism of the movement:

“The presence of priests really living among the masses seems to me a necessary condition of reform and progress.”

Thanks be to God, after Vatican II many priests and religious moved from their rectories and convents and lived and worked among the poorest, especially in Latin America.

Now there may be fewer  who do this, but there are always those who live the radical poverty of the Gospel and share the lives of the poor, imitating poor God-man of Nazareth.

I am not among those who live this radical poverty, but they challenge me.



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