Number of "food insecure" rises
The church world-wide deals with hunger, though some places more than others. But even in the U.S. you don't need to look far to see that hunger is a growing problem right at home.
The USDA released a report this month showing that the number of households that are food insecure increased to almost 15% in 2008. To be a food insecure household means that "the food intake of one or more household members was reduced and their eating patterns were disrupted at times during the year because the household lacked money and other resources for food."
Last year, a classmate of mine who organized his parish's food pantry told me that he had to do some campaigning for more donations because they couldn't keep up with the number of families seeking help. And earlier this fall, Rev. Larry Snyder, President and CEO of Catholic Charities USA, attested to the nationwide trend. "More people are turning to us in our local agencies and operations than ever before and while our resources are strained beyond compare, we nevertheless are there for them."
With the jump in numbers of those needing help just to put food on the table, and organizations' ever-increasing struggle to meet those needs I'm inclined to see the boycott of the CCHD collection this month as a bad idea, to say the least.