Why are we campaigning for an end to hunger in the UK?
The Scandal of Food Poverty
Poverty has been on the rise in the UK in recent years. Despite living in the seventh richest country in the world, there are now two million people estimated to be malnourished in this country, with a further three million in danger of becoming so; parents are regularly skipping meals to feed their families; and 500,000 people are now dependent on food bank parcels to survive. Click here for more.
It is a cliché to say it, but the amount of people living in poverty, unable to feed themselves properly, is a scandal in such a rich country, and one which could be avoided with the right policies from our government. It is also illegal, because in 1976, the UK government made ‘a binding commitment under international human rights law to secure the human right to adequate food for everyone’. This is why Church Action on Poverty has partnered with Oxfam, FareShare, the Trussell Trust and many others to campaign for an end to hunger in the UK.
Our Christian Calling
In John’s Gospel, Jesus asks Peter three times ‘Do you love me?’ and then says ‘Feed my sheep’ (John 21:16-17). The number three is important in the Bible- the cock crows three times when Peter disowns Jesus; Jesus rises on the third day; and so on. When the number three is used, we need to sit up and listen. Jesus’ command here is not just for Peter; it’s for all of his disciples, including us. If we love Jesus, we must feed his sheep- both spiritually and physically.