Hot lunches will be served to hundreds of Sydneysiders “doing it tough”, in response to Pope Francis’ call to celebrate the World Day of the Poor. Source: Sydney Archdiocese.
More than 30 organisations that feed, shelter and clothe thousands of Sydney’s poor and marginalised every day will converge on St Mary’s Cathedral forecourt today to serve and share meals with the homeless as part of the second annual Street Feast.
About 300 homeless people attended a similar luncheon last year, with the City of Sydney estimating that up to 400 people sleep rough each night in central Sydney.
In 2017, the Pope called on all Catholics to acknowledge a World Day of the Poor on the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time each year. The Third World Day of the Poor is on Sunday, 17 November.
Fr Peter Smith from the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney’s Justice and Peace Office said the Sydney Street Feast is a practical way for Catholic charities to put Pope Francis’ message into practice.
“The Pope has called us to reach out to those on the margins, recognising the face of Christ in everyone and through this special event, we are going beyond simply feeding the poor, but are really identifying with them as our sisters and brothers”, Fr Smith said.
Charities who will serve meals at the Street Feast include Vinnies Night Patrol, which prepares 84,000 meals each year, and St Canice’s Kitchen in Elizabeth Bay, which serves about 50,000 meals to the homeless each year.
For the first time, a separate Street Feast will also be held in Parramatta on Tuesday, November 20, involving charities providing outreach to the homeless across the Parramatta Diocese, which covers large areas of western Sydney and the Blue Mountains.
Sydney’s Street Feast will start at midday and run until 2pm.
Hundreds of homeless supported through Sydney Street Feast (Sydney Archdiocese)