Solidarity embodies Christ’s commandment to love our neighbors as ourselves. Solidarity says that we are all members of the human race, no matter our ethnicity, religion, gender, health, or wealth. It also says we are responsible for each other’s well-being.
Pope John Paul II described solidarity as the following:
“This then is not a feeling of vague compassion or shallow distress at the misfortunes of so many people, both near and far. On the contrary, it is a firm and persevering determination to commit oneself to the common good, that is to say, to the good of all and of each individual because we are all really responsible for all.”
Like all the themes in Catholic Social Teaching, solidarity has its roots in scripture. Psalm 82 tells us to “Defend the lowly and fatherless; render justice to the afflicted and needy; rescue the lowly and poor; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”
Practicing solidarity may feel overwhelming in a world with over seven billion people. But as individuals we don’t have to help everyone in the world to practice solidarity. We can practice solidarity in the following simple ways:
  • Visiting a neighbor or parishioner who is homebound or in a nursing home.
  • Supporting our mission parishes financially, with prayers and by sharing their story with others.
  • Donating to and volunteering a day at St. Basil’s food pantry or the Cleveland Foodbank to help hungry people.
  • Making an effort to buy products that are manufactured and supported by fair trade practices; i.e., with fair wages and human dignity.
“The Gospel calls individual Christians to live lives of honesty, integrity and concern for the common good… to create circles of integrity…, networks of solidarity which can expand to embrace and transform society by their prophetic witness.”                                                                                                                           Pope Francis